As Monday’s mass shooting unfolded at a Fourth of July parade in the Chicago suburb of Highland Park, one father told The New York Times he put his son in a dumpster to save him.
Alexander Sandoval, 39, had set up chairs along the parade route and was enjoying the Independence Day event with his family when the shots rang out.
“When it started happening, I thought it was the Navy saluting the flag,” he told the Times. “Then I grabbed my kid and we ran and tried to break a store window to get away from it.”
The construction contractor said he then tried to break down the door of a closed business but wasn’t able to get in.
“I was punching the door but couldn’t punch through it,” he said.
Sandoval told the Times he made his move when he thought the shooter stopped to reload.
“That’s when I ran around the corner and put my son and little brother in a dumpster, and his dog,” he said. “I asked someone to watch him because I had to go back for the rest of my family. Then when I ran back to look for them is when I saw people shot on the ground.”
CNN reports that seven people were killed and more than 24 others were injured in the carnage.
A lifelong Highland Park resident, Sandoval said he saw several people who had been shot.
“I also saw a police officer carrying a little boy about the age of my son,” he told the Times. “It’s just emotional.”
The suspect in the shooting, Robert E. Crimo III, 21, was taken into custody Monday after an intense manhunt and brief car chase, according to CNN. Charges had not been filed as of Tuesday afternoon.
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