A celebratory Fourth of July parade in a suburb outside of Chicago, Highland Park, ended in a mass shooting that left six people dead and dozens injured. The suspect is now in custody, but his YouTube page and previous videos have been wiped from the internet.
Highland Park's Fourth of July parade started as a family event as usual. Soon enough, a gunman fired a rifle into a crowd from a rooftop, aiming at adults and children of all ages. Spectators report that the gunshots sounded like fireworks. All six people who were killed have been identified, including Nicolas Toledo, a grandfather in his 70s.
Highland Park Shooter's YouTube Wiped from Internet
The 22-year-old suspect, Robert E. Crimo, is now in custody; his arrest wasn't a difficult one. Police said he was “taken into custody without incident” on U.S. 41 at Westleigh Road in Lake Forest. Authorities are examining the ownership history of the rifle used for the shooting. In the meantime, his old videos have generated much interest.
An old video of his has surfaced that is particularly haunting. In November 2021, he shared a video of himself reciting a poem in which he called himself a "sleepwalker" that "can't be stopped."
"Like a sleepwalker, I am breaking through no matter what. Like a sleepwalker, unable to stop and think, my actions will be valid, and my thought is unnecessary."
"I know what I have to do. I know what's in it, not only for me, but for everyone else. Where am I going? I don't know, I don't care. There is no past or future, just the now."
"It is more abstract than I could ever have imagined. I can feel the atmosphere pushing me in. It's unstoppable. Like a wave pulling me under, I can't breathe without it. I can't see or hear what I don't want. I need to leave now, I need to just do it."
"It is my destiny. Everything has led up to this. Nothing can stop me, not even myself. Is there such a thing as free will? Or has this been planned out, like a cosmic recipe, it is what I've been waiting for in the back of my head, ready to be awakened. It's what I was sent here to do, like a sleepwalker, walking steady with my head held high, like a sleepwalker, walking blindly into the night."
Crimo goes by the stage name "Awake" and shortly after his YouTube page was discovered, the whole thing was wiped from the internet, including the video in which he referred to himself as a "sleepwalker."
One Twitter user gathered an archive of footage before Crimo's YouTube was completely deleted, but much of the thread has been removed by Twitter already.
Many people are noticing how strange and suspicious it is that Crimo is being entirely scrubbed from the internet.
Crimo is currently in custody.