James and Jennifer Crumbley charged with involuntary manslaughter in Oxford High School shooting after their son, Ethan brought gun from home to school as prosecutors reveal startling revelations and complicity.
The parents of the alleged Michigan school shooter will be charged with involuntary manslaughter in connection to Tuesday’s school mass shooting at Oxford High school carried out by their 15 year old sophomore student son.
James and Jennifer Crumbley were booked after prosecutors during a Friday morning press conference said the parents purchased the murder weapon for their teen seen in the days ahead of Tuesday’s deadly shooting. The alleged gunmans’ parents were charged with four counts each of involuntary manslaughter, which carries a sentence of up to 15 years in prison.
Ethan Crumbley is already being held without bail on murder and terrorism charges over Tuesday’s shooting rampage that left four dead and seven injured in the deadliest US school shooting of the year.
Officials had alluded in prior days that the parents could face charges after failing to secure the gun used in Tuesday’s bloodbath. At the time it remained unclear whether their teen son had taken the weapon without their parent’s consent.
During Friday press conference, prosecutors revealed Jennifer Crumbley had texted her son after the rampage, saying, ‘Ethan, don’t do it,’ and that her husband James called 911 to report that his gun – a 9 mm Sig Sauer SP 2022 – was missing and that Ethan was likely the shooter.
JUST IN: Jennifer and James Crumbley, the parents of Oxford High School shooting suspect Ethan Crumbley, are being charged with multiple counts of involuntary manslaughter pic.twitter.com/1WcyIm7tBd
— NowThis (@nowthisnews) December 3, 2021
Inappropriate internet search
The dad had bought the semi-automatic pistol his son allegedly used just four days earlier, on Black Friday, officials previously revealed. Prosecutors allege that the parents ignored multiple warning signs and refused to take their son out of school just hours before the shooting.
‘These charges are intended to hold the individuals who contributed to this tragedy accountable and also send the message that gun owners have a responsibility,’ Oakland County prosecutor Karen McDonald said. ‘When they fail to uphold that responsibility, there are serious and criminal consequences.’
The prosecutor revealed that James Crumbley, who, like his wife, had a prior criminal history in Michigan, bought the murder weapon from a retailer with his son there on November 26.
The father, according to McDonald, stored the 9mm handgun in an unlocked drawer in his bedroom.
A day later, Ethan’s mother posted a message on social media that read: ‘mom and son day testing out his new Christmas present.’ Jennifer’s Instagram account has since been taken down.
Less than a week before the gun was purchased, on Nov 21, McDonald said that a teacher at Oxford High School observed Ethan searching ammunition on his cell during class and reported it to school officials.
Jennifer was contacted via voicemail by the school about her son’s inappropriate internet search, and officials followed up with an email but received no response.
Day before shooting, “teacher had seen suspect searching online for ammunition for the gun….After being informed by the school about their son’s behavior, Jennifer Crumbley texted her son: ‘LOL, I’m not mad at you. You have to learn not to get caught.’” https://t.co/X25fibCC0E
— Connie Schultz (@ConnieSchultz) December 3, 2021
‘lol, I’m not mad at you, you have to learn not to get caught.’
The mother exchanged texts with her son on that day stating: ‘lol, I’m not mad at you, you have to learn not to get caught.’
On the morning of the shooting, a teacher found a chilling note on Ethan’s desk, which featured disturbing drawings depicting a semi-automatic gun, a bullet, blood everywhere, a shooting victim and a laughing emoji.
According to the prosecutor, the note included the words: ‘Thoughts won’t stop, help me’; ‘my life is useless’ and ‘the world is dead.’
Jennifer and James were immediately summoned to the school to discuss their son’s worrying behavior. A school counselor was able to obtain the note with the drawing, but McDonald said by then the noted had been ‘altered.’
The doodles of the gun and the bullet-ridden figure were ‘scratched out,’ as well as Ethan’s writings.
During the meeting, the Crumbleys were shown the note and were advised that they were required to get Ethan into counselling within 48 hours.
Weapon was freely available to teen
According to the prosecutor, the mother and father failed to ask Ethan if he had his gun with him, or where his gun was, and did not inspect his backpack.
McDonald said the parents ‘resisted’ the idea of pulling their son out of the school at that time and left without him.
The second-year student in the days before Tuesday’s mass shooting had posed with the weapon on social media, which suggested it was ‘freely available’ in the family home before the slaughter, prosecutors said.
Oakland County Prosecutor Karen McDonald had said Thursday that the ‘actions on mom and dad’s behalf go far beyond negligence.’
‘You have a right to possess a gun, but with it comes responsibility,’ she told a press conference. ‘Allowing it in the hands of somebody that shows signs that they may hurt somebody is not OK, and those people should be held accountable.’
Sheriff Michael Bouchard speaking to media also stressed that it is ‘illegal for someone’ aged 15 to ‘possess or carry a handgun.’
‘So if they participated in that, that’s clearly a crime,’ he stressed.
The accused mass-shooter — who is charged as an adult — was on Wednesday ordered held without bond at the Oakland County Jail.
In addition to four counts of first-degree murder, the alleged teen shooter faces one count of terrorism causing death, seven counts of assault with intent to murder and 12 counts of possession of a firearm in the commission of a felony.
Bought the handgun to school to deliberately murder as many students as he could
Investigators said the teen had recorded videos the night before detailing his plans, along with writing in a journal about ‘his desire to shoot up the school to include murdering students,’ Lieutenant Tim Willis of the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office told the arraignment.
McDonald, the prosecutor, said the attack was ‘absolutely premeditated.’
‘I am absolutely sure after reviewing evidence that it isn’t even a close call,’ she said.
Assistant prosecutor Marc Keast told the court that Crumbley ‘deliberately brought the handgun that day with the intent to murder as many students as he could.’
He was found with an additional 18 rounds of ammunition when he was arrested, the court was told.
Officials have said Crumbley did not appear to have specific targets nor a clear motive, seemingly refuting claims that he was being bullied.
Tuesday’s school shooting was the deadliest school shooting since 2018 when 10 were killed in a high school in Santa Fe, Texas, 2018, according to The Associated Press/USA TODAY/Northeastern University Mass Killings database. The US has had 31 mass killings this year of which 28 involved firearms.