Charges filed against parents of suspect in Michigan school shooting

Karen McDonald, the Oakland County, Mich., prosecutor, announced that involuntary manslaughter charges have been filed against the parents of the 15-year-old suspect in Tuesday’s deadly shooting at Oxford High School, which left four students dead.

Video transcript

- While the shooter was the one who entered the high school and pulled the trigger, there are other individuals who contributed to the events on November 30, and it's my intention to hold them accountable as well. It's imperative we prevent this from happening again. No other parent or community should have to live through this nightmare.

I have shared previously and I will reiterate today that gun ownership is a right. And with that right comes great responsibility. Based on the information and evidence I have received, today, I'm announcing charges against the shooter's parents, Jennifer and James Crumbley. The charges are as follows.

James Crumbley is charged with four counts of involuntary manslaughter. Jennifer Crumbley is also charged with four counts of involuntary manslaughter. I will now publish the details that led to that decision and have already previously been made public, which allows me to comment on them in a swear-to that had just taken place in the district court by Officer Tim Willis-- Detective Tim Willis.

The investigation into the school shooting incident at Oxford High School, which occurred on November 30, 2021, has revealed that James Crumbley purchased a SIG Sauer 9 millimeter model SP 2022 from Acme Shooting Goods in Oxford, Michigan on November 26, 2021. A store employee confirms that Ethan Crumbley was present with James at the time of the purchase. For statute, James Crumbley completed ATF form 300-9A-- 5300-9A.

On or about November 26, 2021, Ethan Crumbley's social media posts reveal photos of the semi-automatic handgun along with the caption, "just got my new beauty today, including an emoji with hearts, SIG Sauer 9 millimeter. Any questions I will answer," end quote. Subsequent to the purchase of that weapon, one of Jennifer Crumbley's social media posts on about 11/27/21 read, quote, "Mom and Sunday testing out his new Christmas present," end quote.

On November 21, '21, a teacher at the Oxford High School observed Ethan crumbly searching ammunition on his cell phone during class and reported the same to school officials. Jennifer Crumbley was contacted via voicemail by school personnel regarding that son's inappropriate internet search. School personnel indicate they followed that voicemail up with an email, but received no response from either parents.

Thereafter, Jennifer Tremblay exchanged text messages about the incident with her son on that day, stating, quote, "lol I'm not mad at you, you have to learn not to get caught," end quote. On November 30, '21, the morning of the shooting, the next day, Ethan Crumbley's teacher came upon a note on Ethan's desk which alarmed her to the point that she took a picture of it and her cell phone. The note contained the following. A drawing of a semi-automatic handgun pointing at the words, quote, "the thoughts won't stop, help me," end quote. In another section of the note was a drawing of a bullet with the following words above that bullet quote, "blood everywhere," end quote.

Between the drawing of the gun and the bullet is a drawing of a person who appears to have been shot twice and bleeding. Below that figure is a drawing of a laughing emoji. Further down the drawing are the words, quote, "my life is useless," end quote. And to the right of that are the words, quote, "the world is dead," end quote.

As a result, James and Jennifer Crumbley were immediately summoned to the school. A school counselor came to the classroom and removed the shooter and brought him to the office with his backpack. Counselor obtained the drawing, but the shooter had already altered it.

The drawings of the octagon and the bloody figure were scratched out along with the words, help me, and my life is useless, the world is dead, and blood everywhere. Those were all altered by him. As the meeting-- at the meeting, James and Jennifer Crumbley were shown the drawing and were advised that they were required to get their son into counseling within 48 hours. Both James and Jennifer Crumbley failed to ask their son if he had his gun with him or where his gun was located and failed to inspect his backpack for the presence of the gun, which he had with him.

James and Jennifer Crumbley resisted the idea of then leaving the school at that time-- of their son leaving the school at that time. Instead, James and Jennifer Crumbley left the high school without their son. He was returned to the classroom.

When the news of the active shooter at Oxford High School had been made public, Jennifer Crumbley texted to her son at 11:22-- I'm sorry, at 1:22 PM, quote, "Ethan, don't do it," end quote. At 1:37 PM, James Crumbley called 9-1-1, reporting that a gun was missing from his house, and he believed his son may be the shooter. Further investigation revealed that the SIG Sauer hour 9 millimeter handgun purchased by James Crumbley restored unlocked in a drawer in James' and Jennifer's bedroom. The gun recovered from the shooter at the school after the shooting was the same gun that was purchased by his father James Crumbley, on November 26, 2021 in the presence of his son.

Based upon the foregoing, the Oakland County Prosecutor's Office requested and received, authorized, we charge four counts of involuntary manslaughter as to James Crumbley and four counts of involuntary manslaughter as to Jennifer Crumbley.

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