The man suspected of shooting dead six people in Chicago was dressed as a woman to hide his facial tattoos, in a bid to blend in as he escaped the scene, police have said.
Robert E Crimo III, 21, was arrested after the shooting at a Fourth Of July parade in the Chicago suburb of Highland Park.
In an attack that police say had been planned for several weeks, Crimo is alleged to have climbed up a fire escape ladder onto the roof of a business before firing more than 70 rounds at the crowd with a high-powered assault rifle.
Lake County Major Crime Task Force spokesman Christopher Covelli said: “During the attack he was dressed in women’s clothing and investigators do believe he did this to conceal his facial tattoos and his identity to help him during the escape with the other people who were fleeing the chaos.”
Mr Covelli said the suspect had been able to blend in with the crowd as he left the scene and headed for his mother’s home nearby.
Mr Covelli said that the disguise had been captured on video, adding: “I’m not sure what the women’s attire consisted of but it was initially reported that this person had long hair, so a wig isn’t out of the question.”
Crimo was arrested after his vehicle was spotted, and officers at the scene found a second weapon in his car, Mr Covelli said.
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Fourth of July shooting suspect Robert Crimo’s strange and violent online trail
It comes just weeks after 19 children and two teachers were shot dead at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, and 10 people were shot dead at a grocery store in Buffalo, New York.
And just hours after the Chicago shooting, two police officers were shot in Philadelphia, although they have since been released from hospital.
There have been 15 shootings this year in which four or more people have been killed, according to a database maintained by The Associated Press, USA Today, and Northeastern University.