Highland Park suspect’s online history reveals a fascination

Crimo created rap music underneath the identify Awake The Rapper. In one particular movie, he wears a helmet and vest inside an empty classroom and scatters bullets across the ground.

Screenshot by NPR/AwakeTheRapper


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Screenshot by NPR/AwakeTheRapper


Crimo manufactured rap new music less than the name Awake The Rapper. In one movie, he wears a helmet and vest inside an vacant classroom and scatters bullets across the floor.

Screenshot by NPR/AwakeTheRapper

In the thousands of messages, images, movies and tracks posted on line by Robert Crimo III, the 21-yr-outdated suspected of opening fire on a Fourth of July parade in suburban Illinois, a single summary is clear: Crimo was unusually intrigued in violence.

At minimum two of his songs movies depicted some variety of capturing. On Discord, he shared a picture of Budd Dwyer, a politician who killed himself all through a are living push convention. And he evidently posted countless numbers of occasions to an on line forum focused to sharing violent shots and films of people dying.

“It was pretty obvious that this suspect experienced a background on-line of glorifying and fantasizing about violence, and to me that sends a pink flag on prime of a crimson flag,” stated Jared Holt, a fellow at the Atlantic Council who researches domestic extremism.

Officials are reviewing Crimo’s online activity, explained Chris Covelli from the Lake County Sheriff’s Office at a Tuesday push meeting. Questioned if anybody experienced at any time named neighborhood law enforcement with considerations about Crimo’s on the internet information, Covelli stated no.

Crimo’s new music experienced been listened to millions of moments

Underneath versions on the identify “Awake” – the same word tattooed earlier mentioned his left eye – Crimo posted on a regular basis to YouTube.

On Spotify, Crimo’s new music experienced been listened to tens of millions of moments before the service taken out it right after the shooting. For supporters of his tunes, he hosted a Discord server, the place followers shared memes and hyperlinks to his music.

Holt described Crimo’s on line footprint as in line with movements that try out “to make on their own seem pretty extreme and very violent to accumulate a sure amount of perverted clout among other people in the same on the internet spaces.”

“There are parts of the world wide web that satisfaction on their own on this fetishization of violence, of being as offensive as humanly doable,” he claimed.

Crimo evidently posted in an on the web discussion board for sharing graphic pics

Among the most disturbing is what appears to be Crimo’s activity on a forum known as Documenting Fact, exactly where individuals share graphic pictures and films that demonstrate the aftermath of violence.

There, a user named “Awake47” shared photographs of Crimo and posted a 21st birthday concept that matches info introduced by the FBI. The user frequently handed footage of shootings and other serious-life violence.

He posted there so normally that other forum buyers recognized his encounter when police released a photograph during the manhunt on Monday. “I generally realized there was at least 1 assassin on this website, and I’m not certain he’s the only just one. But Awake? Wow,” wrote one consumer.

An additional of Crimo’s music movies shows a crudely animated college shooter who is in the end apprehended and shot by law enforcement.

Screenshot by NPR/AwakeTheRapper


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Screenshot by NPR/AwakeTheRapper


One more of Crimo’s songs video clips reveals a crudely animated university shooter who is ultimately apprehended and shot by police.

Screenshot by NPR/AwakeTheRapper

Crimo’s fascination with violence also appeared in his tunes, which he printed on Spotify and YouTube below the name Awake the Rapper.

Just one crudely animated video depicts a young man with tactical gear and an assault-type rifle taking pictures people right before law enforcement seem to apprehend and shoot him – all even though a chorus is recurring: “Residing the dream, nothing’s true. I just want to scream ‘fuck this world.'”

And an additional songs online video opens with Crimo sitting by itself in a classroom. Midway by way of the music, he reaches into a backpack – then the video cuts to Crimo carrying a helmet and tactical vest.

Any ideological determination by Crimo is unclear

One particular issue that is challenging to verify from Crimo’s on line footprint is whether or not the shooting may have been ideologically determined. Authorities say they have no indication that the shooting was racially or religiously determined.

Immediately after the capturing Monday, some photographs of Crimo spread promptly on social media, together with a image in which he wore a Trump flag across his shoulders and an additional at a Trump rally. A online video posted by Crimo shows him among the a crowd waiting around outdoors an airport for Trump to land close by in Air Force A person.

But Holt suggests a handful of pictures are not adequate to show some kind of political leaning or right-wing extremism. “I haven’t found everything that actually definitively locations this in the politically determined violence bucket just nonetheless,” he stated.

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