PONTIAC, MI — Although the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office has not been able to locate the parents of 15-year-old Ethan Crumbley who is accused of shooting eleven people, killing four, at Oxford High School on Tuesday, an attorney for the parents told the Detroit Free Press they are not on the run and will return to be arraigned.
“The Crumbleys left town on the night of the tragic shooting for their own safety. They are returning to the area to be arraigned. They are not fleeing from law enforcement despite recent comments in media reports,” according to the report.
Updated at 3:08 p.m.:
PONTIAC, MI — A fugitive search team was searching Friday afternoon for James and Jennifer Crumbley, the parents of 15-year-old Ethan Crumbley who is accused of shooting eleven people, killing four, at Oxford High School on Tuesday, authorities said.
Detectives were informed by an attorney that she would represent both parents and make arrangements for their arrest if charges were issued, Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard said. However, the attorney contacted detectives again and said she was unable to reach them by phone or text, authorities said.
“We have our Fugitive Apprehension Team, the FBI and the U.S. Marshals Service and others actively looking for them and have every expectation we’ll have them in custody soon,” Bouchard said. “The action of fleeing and ignoring their attorney certainly adds weight to the charges. They cannot run from their part in this tragedy.”
The couple may be driving a black 2021 Kia Seltos SUV with the Michigan license plate number DQG 5203, the office said. Anyone with information about the couple’s whereabouts should call the Sheriff’s Office at 248- 858-4911.
Oakland County Prosecutor Karen McDonald charged both parents with involuntary manslaughter Friday. The charges come as Oakland County Prosecutor Karen McDonald revealed new details about the parents’ role leading up to the massacre, including their resistance to removing the teen from school even after teachers found “alarming” drawings and text that included a gun and a figure who was twice shot and bleeding.
The teen’s parents were each charged with four counts of involuntary manslaughter, officials said at a news conference Friday. An involuntary manslaughter conviction carries a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison under Michigan Penal Code Act 328.
“It’s been a devastating week for all of us,” McDonald said during a news conference. “The facts of this case are so egregious.”
McDonald said that on the morning of Nov. 30, the day of the shooting, Crumbley’s teacher became alarmed after seeing a note on Ethan’s desk written by him that contained a drawing of a semiautomatic handgun pointed at the words: “The thoughts won’t stop. Help me.” In another section of that note, he drew a bullet with the words: “Blood everywhere.”
Between the drawing of the gun and bullet was a picture of a person who was twice shot and bleeding, prosecutors said. Below that was a drawing of a laughing emoji, and further down were the words “My life is useless.” To the right of that read the words: “The world is dead.”
It “alarmed [the teacher] to the point she took a picture of it on her cell phone,” McDonald said.
The charges for the parents come after authorities charged the 15-year-old sophomore with terrorism and first-degree murder in connection with the shooting Tuesday at Oxford High School. Four students died and seven others were wounded.
Charges Filed Against Ethan Crumbley’s Parents
Four days before the shooting, Crumbley’s parents bought him a gun as a Christmas present, prosecutors said. The teen then boasted about the gift on Instagram, and his mother described the gun in a social media post as a “Christmas present” for her son.
Crumbley was caught Monday, the day before the massacre, searching online for ammunition during class, prosecutors said. The high school sent a voicemail and email to his parents about the ammunition search, and his mother then sent a text message to her son that read: “LOL, I’m not mad, you have to learn not to get caught,” McDonald said.
Furthermore, a teacher also found a note in Ethan’s desk the morning of the shooting that contained a drawing of a gun, bullet and person bleeding, prosecutors said. That’s what led the school to pull the boy out of class and summon his parents. There, they were shown the drawings and instructed to get their son into counseling within 48 hours, McDonald said.
“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,” she said.
The teenager’s parents had been storing the newly purchased 9 mm Sig Sauer pistol unlocked in a bedroom drawer, McDonald said.
The parents also resisted the idea of having Ethan leave the school with them, McDonald said. The parents ultimately left the school, and Ethan Crumbley returned to class. He later opening fire at 12:51 p.m.
About a half-hour after the gunfire began, prosecutors said, Jennifer Crumbley texted her son: “Ethan, don’t do it.” Upon hearing there was an active shooter that day, James Crumbley drove straight home to look for his gun, McDonald said.
When a reporter asked whether school officials could also face charges, McDonald said the investigation remains ongoing.
“There are a lot of things that could have been so simple to prevent,” she said.
Oxford Superintendent: No Discipline Needed Before Shooting
Oxford Community School District Superintendent Tim Throne said Thursday in a short video that the accused shooter at Oxford High School was called into the school’s office before the shooting, but said “no discipline was warranted.”
“I want you to know that there’s been a lot of talk about the student who was apprehended, that he was called up to the office and all that kind of stuff,” Throne said. “No discipline was warranted. There are no discipline records at the high school. Yes this student did have contact with our front office, and, yes, his parents were on campus Nov. 30.”
Funerals dates for Oxford High School shooting victims
Tate Myre, Madisyn Baldwin, Hana St. Juliana and Justin Shilling were shot to death inside Oxford High School.
With many communities grieving their loss, funeral arrangements have been made for the victims.
Visitation for Tate Myre will be held from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday and 10 a.m. to noon Tuesday. His funeral is set for noon Tuesday. The services will take place at Kensington Church in Lake Orion.
As of Friday afternoon, funeral arrangements for Madisyn Baldwin have been made but are not public.
Hana St. Juliana
Visitation for Hana St. Juliana is set for Wednesday between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. at Lakepoint Community Church in Oxford. Her funeral will be the same day.
As of Friday afternoon, funeral arrangements for Justin Shilling have been made but are not public.
Wolverines To Honor Slain Oxford Victims With Jersey Patch
When the University of Michigan Wolverines take the field for their first-ever Big Ten championship game appearance, the team will wear a special jersey patch honoring the Oxford shooting victims.
The octagonal maize-and-blue patch will be on the players’ right chest and feature the letters “TM,” and the number “42,” which was worn by shooting victim Tate Myre, who was an Oxford football player. The patch also features four hearts, one each for the four slain students.