The person standing accused of carrying out the shooting of over a dozen people who were enjoying an Independence Day parade in Illinois was allowed to buy the firearms used in the attack due to his father choosing to co-sign his Firearm Owners Identification (FOID) card, which is a document required for all gun owners in the state.
This discovery took place in the wake of local law enforcement agencies unveiling earlier in the day that the alleged suspect had already been on the radar of police officials because of a pair of incidents that took place back in 2019, including the suspect attempting suicide being followed by an alleged threat to “kill everyone” just a scant few months after.
“At the time of the incident, [the suspect] did not have a FOID card to revoke, and did not have a pending FOID application to deny,” read a report from Fox 32. “Then, in December 2019, at 19, [the suspect] applied for a FOID card and was sponsored by his father. At the time, [Illinois State Police] said there were insufficient bases to establish a clear and present danger and deny the application.”
Monica Eng, a reporter for Axios, stated that ISP did not have a strong enough reason to deny the suspect the FOID card due to the suspect’s family not pressing charges against him in the wake of his alleged threat to “kill everyone.”
Christopher Covelli, the Public Information Officer for the Lake County Sheriff’s Office, stated as part of a press conference earlier in the day the ordeal that took place in 2019 that forced a response from law enforcement officials.
“I’m going to relay some information from two prior instances that occurred here in Highland Park,” explained Covelli. “The first was in April of 2019. An individual contacted Highland Park Police Department a week after learning of [the suspect] attempting suicide. This was a delayed report, so Highland Park still responded to the residence a week later, spoke with [the suspect], spoke with [the suspect’s] parents, and the matter was being handled by mental health professionals at that time, there was no law enforcement action to be taken. It was a mental health issue and handled by those professionals.”
“The second occurred in September of 2019,” added Covelli. “A family member reported that [the suspect] said he was going to kill everyone and [the suspect] had a collection of knives. The police responded to his residence, the police removed 16 knives, a dagger, and a sword from [the suspect’s] home. At that time, there was no probable cause to arrest, there were no complaints that were signed by any of the victims. The Highland Park Police Department, however, did immediately notify the Illinois State Police of the incident.”