Parents of Michigan school shooter Ethan Crumbley appeal order to stand trial


(OXFORD, Mich.) — The parents of Michigan school shooter Ethan Crumbley have filed appeals to the Michigan Supreme Court after a lower court ruled they had to stand trial in the case.

Jennifer and James Crumbley have pleaded not guilty to four counts of involuntary manslaughter in connection with the Nov. 30, 2021, mass shooting at Oxford High School.

Their son, Ethan Crumbley, who was 15 at the time, allegedly used James Crumbley’s semi-automatic handgun to kill four students and injure several others. Last year, the teenager pleaded guilty to all charges against him, including terrorism and murder.

Jennifer and James Crumbley are accused of making the gun accessible at home and failing to recognize warning signs.

Their defense attorneys have meanwhile argued that the Crumbleys can’t be held criminally responsible for their son’s independent actions.

Last year, their attorneys appealed after a district court judge ruled there was sufficient evidence for the parents to stand trial for their alleged role in the attack.

In March, a three-judge panel with the Michigan Court of Appeals ruled that the couple can stand trial. In a written opinion, Judge Christopher Murray said Jennifer and James Crumbley’s “actions and inactions were inexorably intertwined with” their son’s actions.

The parents “provided him with the weapon he used to kill the victims” and “refused to remove him from the situation that led directly to the shootings,” Murray wrote.

The Michigan Court of Appeals’ opinion also noted that the district court didn’t abuse its discretion in determining that the gunman’s decision to shoot his classmates “was not a superseding cause because it ‘was foreseeable based on an objective standard of reasonableness."”

In their appeals, filed on Wednesday, the parents’ attorneys argued that the appeals court’s decision “is clearly erroneous, will cause injustices, and conflicts with Michigan Court of Appeals and Supreme Court precedent.”

They also argued that Ethan Crumbley was the “sole cause of harm” to the victims and that the shooting was “not reasonably foreseeable.”

A trial date has not yet been set in the case.

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