Michigan prosecutor: There was 'absolute reason to believe' suspected shooter was 'dangerous and disturbed'

·2 min read


The Michigan prosecutor who on Friday announced charges against the parents of a 15-year-old school shooting suspect said there is "absolute reason to believe" that the teen was "dangerous and disturbed."

Oakland County prosecutor Karen McDonald was asked during a news conference on Friday if there was any reason to believe that 15-year-old Ethan Crumbley, suspected of killing four students and injuring seven other people, had a gun on him the day of the shooting.

"I've stated what was known to the individuals, what the search indicated and ammunition, what the document - I stated every single sentence that was on that document. So I suppose you should draw your own conclusion. The conclusion I draw is that there was absolute reason to believe this individual was dangerous and disturbed," McDonald answered.

McDonald announced on Friday that Crumbley's parents had each been charged with four counts of involuntary manslaughter.

She noted that some of the evidence that went into the decision included the fact that the suspected shooter had been with his father, James Crumbley, when the gun he later used in the shooting was purchased. She also said that a social media post from Ethan Crumbley's mother indicated that the firearm was an early Christmas gift for their son.

McDonald said that on Nov. 21, a teacher found the 15-year-old looking up ammunition on his cellphone, and that school personnel had left a voicemail for and sent an email to the teen's mother about the incident.

"Thereafter, Jennifer Crumbly exchanged text messages about the incident with her son on that day, stating, quote, L-O-L I'm not mad at you. You have to learn not to get caught, end quote," McDonald said.

The prosecutor also discussed drawings made by the 15-year-old and found by a teacher on the morning of the shooting, showing a gun pointing at words that read "the thoughts won't stop, help me" and someone being shot twice. The drawings, which were subsequently altered, were shown to the parents prior to the shooting incident where they were told to get their son to counseling within the next two days.

It is unclear at this point if the teen's parents have lawyers representing them.

Some organizations on Friday praised the choice by prosecutors to charge the teen's parents.

"Given the facts shared by Prosecutor McDonald that the firearm used in this shooting was purchased by the father for his 15-year-old son and then kept, unlocked, in a bedside table, it is clear that these parents bear responsibility for creating conditions that allowed the tragic shooting at Oxford High School to occur," Kris Brown, president of the anti-gun violence group Brady, said in a statement.

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