‘Why here?’ Middleton business owner is shocked after Highland Park shooter’s phone was found on his property

MIDDLETON, Wis. — The alleged shooter who killed seven and injured more than 30 others at a Fourth of July parade in Highland Park, Illinois, considered opening fire at a second holiday event in Madison, and evidence was found at a business in Middleton.

Investigators confirmed that the Highland Park mass shooter’s cell phone was found on the 6500 block of University Avenue on Tuesday morning.

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James Lund is the owner of Jim’s Auto Service Center in Middleton. He said the FBI and other investigators were at his business at 9 a.m. on Tuesday morning, one day after Robert Crimo III opened fire on the parade in Highland Park.

“They were searching for something that a suspect might have left on my property or the next door neighbor’s property,” said Lund.

On the property, they found Crimo’s cell phone.

“(I) never would expect it to happen,” said Lund. “I still wonder… why here? Why did they put it here?”

Jim’s Auto Service Center is next to Dunn’s Import, where the FBI also searched.

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“The local FBI came in and said ‘We have to ask to search the property,’ and they were here for about 4 1/2 hours,” said Jeremy Spann with Dunn’s Import.

Law enforcement didn’t find any items on the property of Dunn’s Import.

“I’m glad nothing else happened from it,”  said Spann. “It’s really unfortunate, even the potential for it to happen is unnerving.”

Lund of Jim’s Auto Service Center says he can’t believe the investigation to find Crimo came to the backyard of his own workplace.

“Middleton has a parade here, and it starts right outside of my station,” said Lund. “I’m nervous and afraid.”