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April 02, 2022
On November 30, 2021, 15-year-old sophomore Ethan Crumbley of Oxford Highschool, Michigan, opened fire in the school hallways, killing four students and injuring several others, including two teachers, in the deadliest shooting at a US K-12 campus since 2018. After firing over thirty rounds, he gave himself over to police and was quickly arrested and taken into custody and is being held at Oakland County Jail.
Four days before the shooting, on Black Friday, November 26, 2021, Ethan’s father, James Crumbley, took his son to purchase a 9mm Sig Sauer SP2022 pistol. Ethan Crumbley later posted a picture of his new firearm to social media with the caption: “Just got my new beauty today. SIG SAUER 9mm.”
Soon thereafter, Ethan's mother, Jennifer Crumbley, made a post to her social media profile, captioning the image: “Mom and son day testing out his new Christmas present.”
A couple of days later on November 29, 2021, the day before the shooting, officials at Ethan’s school attempted to contact his parents after one of his teachers caught him searching for ammunition on his cell phone. His parents did not respond to the school, but a text exchange between Jennifer Crumbley and her son read: “LOL I’m not mad at you. You have to learn not to get caught.”
Neither Jennifer nor James made an attempt to contact the school regarding the matter.
The following day, November 30, 2021, the day of the shooting, one of Ethan’s teachers discovered a disturbing doodle and demanded his parent’s come to the school to have an emergency meeting about it. The drawing featured a semi-automatic handgun, much like the one Ethan had received from his parents for Christmas, with the words: "The thoughts won’t stop. Help me," scrawled above it. Ethan had also drawn a bullet, as well as a person with two bullet wounds and the words: “blood everywhere,” “my life is useless," and "the world is dead" written on the page. Disturbed by the drawing, the teacher took a picture of it.
By the time Ethan and his parents were in the office together, Ethan had edited the drawing. His parents were informed that they had 48 hours to organise counselling for their child.
They refused to take him out of school that day. They did not check his backpack for the gun they had bought for him just days ago, nor ask him of its whereabouts, and Ethan was sent back to class.
The school shooting began around 1pm.
At 1:22 Ethan’s mother sent him an SMS that read: “Ethan, don’t do it.”
At 1:37pm Ethan’s father made a 911 call saying his son may be the shooter. He admitted that the semi-automatic handgun they had purchased from him was missing from an unlocked drawer in their bedroom where they had been keeping it.
Police believe Ethan Crumbley had the gun on him the whole time he was at school that day.
“We have to believe that he had the weapon either on his person in his backpack or somewhere secreted in that travel route and because the process never had him leaving the school,” reported Sheriff Michael Bouchard.
Among the dead was junior honour student and varsity football player 16-year-old Tate Myre, Madisyn Baldwin, 17, who planned to study art in college and had already been accepted for several placements, first-year student and member of the Oxford basketball team, Hana St. Juliana, 14, and co-captain of the Oxford high bowling team, Justin Schilling, 17, who had been awarded a university scholarship placement.
Ethan Crumbley is being charged as an adult with one count of terrorism causing death, seven counts of assault with intent to murder and twelve counts of possession of a firearm. Ethan Crumbley appeared in court this week where he pleaded not guilty. He was denied bond.
A video of the suspect walking down the school hallway, aiming and firing at his fellow students (close range firing at their heads and chests) was shown at the recent court hearing. According to reports, digital records show that the attack was premeditated. Oakland Country Prosecutor, Karen McDonald, stated: “We've charged four counts of first-degree murder, which requires premeditation, and I am absolutely sure after reviewing the evidence that it wasn't even a close call. It was absolutely premeditated."
Prosecutor Marc Keats described the video of the shooting as: “Methodical and deliberate” and described how the suspect exited a school bathroom before open firing on the other students.
According to reports, police found videos on Ethan Crumbley's phone made the night before the shooting, in which he talked about shooting and killing his fellow students. A journal was also reportedly recovered, written in it was the suspects desire to shoot kids at school.
Ethan Crumbley had eighteen rounds on his person remaining, however, gave himself up to police where he was subsequently arrested and taken into custody.
In Michigan, police cannot talk to a juvenile without permission from the parents. Crumbley’s parents denied permission and requested representation. James and Jennifer Crumbley were both arrested after attempting to evade the law by hiding in an abandoned art warehouse in Detroit after their vehicle was spotted outside. Both were charged with four counts of involuntary manslaughter and both parents, along with their son, are being held separately and in isolation at the Oakland County Jail. Both pleaded not guilty to the involuntary manslaughter charges and are each being held on a bond of $500,000 each.
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