Parents of Michigan school shooting suspect are charged with involuntary manslaughter

A memorial outside of Oxford High School, where four students were killed in a mass shooting Tuesday.
A memorial outside of Oxford High School, where four students were killed in a mass shooting Tuesday.
Scott Olson/Getty Images

Prosecutors have charged Jennifer and James Crumbley, the parents of the 15-year-old accused of murdering four students at a high school in Michigan, with four counts each of involuntary manslaughter.

The 9mm Sig Sauer SP 2022 pistol used in Tuesday's shooting at Oxford High School in Oxford Township, a small community north of Detroit, was purchased by James Crumbley at a local gun shop on Black Friday, authorities said Friday.

A store employee told authorities that Crumbley's son was with him at the time of the purchase, Oakland County prosecutor Karen McDonald said at a press conference Friday, who cited multiple social media posts by Ethan Crumbley and his parents afterward.

"While the shooter was the one who entered the high school and pulled the trigger, there are other individuals who contributed to the events of November 30, and it's my intention to hold them accountable as well," McDonald said.

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"Gun ownership is a right. And with that right comes great responsibility," McDonald said.

Ethan Crumbley, a sophomore at Oxford High, currently faces 24 felony counts, including four counts of first-degree murder, seven counts of assault with intent to murder and one count of terrorism. He will be tried as an adult and faces life in prison if convicted.

Authorities on Wednesday said his parents had been called to the school earlier Tuesday to discuss a behavior issue with their son.

Afterward, without leaving the school grounds, Crumbley entered a bathroom wearing a backpack, then came out with the pistol in his hand and began shooting.

Four students have died: Tate Myre, 16, Hana St. Juliana, 14, Madisyn Baldwin, 17, and Justin Shilling, 17. Authorities did not believe any students were targeted in particular.

Six other students and a 47-year-old teacher were wounded, authorities said.

Prosecutors' decision to charge the younger Crumbley with terrorism is unusual in Michigan. The criminal complaint accuses Crumbley of "intending to intimidate or coerce" the high school community.

"What about all the children who ran, screaming, hiding under desks? What about all the children at home right now, who can't eat and can't sleep and can't imagine a world where they could ever step foot back in that school? Those are victims, too, and so are their families and so is the community," McDonald said at a press conference Wednesday. "The charge of terrorism reflects that.”

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