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‘Hearts broken’ after seven die in Independence Day shooting

08 July 2022

ALAMY

A police officer picks up a waterlogged Stars and Stripes on Tuesday, left behind after Monday’s shooting in Highland Park, in a northern suburb of Chicago

A police officer picks up a waterlogged Stars and Stripes on Tuesday, left behind after Monday’s shooting in Highland Park, in a northern suburb...

RELIGIOUS leaders have expressed deep sadness after seven people were reported to have died, and more than 30 to have been injured, when a gunman opened fire at an Independence Day parade in Highland Park, in a northern suburb of Chicago, on Monday.

A 21-year-old man, Robert Crimo, is in police custody. He made his first court appearance via video link on Wednesday, and was denied bail. No plea was submitted, but a county prosecutor told the court that the suspect had confessed to the attack. Police reported they had no immediate evidence of any anti-Semitic or racist motivation for the attack; investigations are ongoing.

Trinity Episcopal Church, Highland Park, hosted an online service of lament on Monday evening. The Bishop-elect of Chicago, the Revd Paula Clark, and the Assisting Bishop, the Rt Revd Chilton Knudsen, issued a pastoral message that said that their “hearts were broken” by the shootings. They drew attention to the continuing plague of gun violence in Chicago.

Resolutions referring to gun violence will be considered at the Episcopal Church’s General Convention, in Baltimore, Maryland, this weekend.

Pope Francis has also spoken out about the shootings. In a telegram to the Archbishop of Chicago, Cardinal Blase Cupich, he said that he was “deeply saddened” to learn “of the senseless shooting”, and expressed support for those affected.

The Pope said he that “joins the entire community in praying that Almighty God will grant eternal rest to the dead and healing and consolation to the injured and bereaved”, and sent his blessing “as a pledge of strength and peace in the Lord”.

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