James and Jennifer Crumbly Sentenced in School Shooting

(RightWing.org) – There have been hundreds of school shootings over the past few decades, with thousands of students and teachers wounded. Typically, the law only punishes the shooter for the crime, if they are alive in the aftermath. However, prosecutors decided to charge one criminal’s parents for their negligence.

The Shooting

On November 30, 2021, 15-year-old Ethan Crumbley opened fire at Oxford High School in Michigan. He ended up killing four students and injuring seven people. He was later convicted and sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for the crime. However, prosecutors weren’t done.

They took into consideration how the school called Crumbley’s parents, James and Jennifer Crumbley, in to discuss their son’s violent drawings on the day of the shooting. Not only did the parents not address the drawings with their son, but they left him in school because they had to return to work. Nobody searched his backpack, either, which contained the handgun he used to carry out the attack. The shooting took place just hours later.

Authorities also reportedly uncovered other signs that Ethan Crumbley needed help for mental health issues that also went unnoticed or ignored.

Crumbleys Tried and Convicted

In a landmark case, the prosecutors decided to try Jennifer and James Crumbley, who fled after their son was arrested, charging them with four counts of involuntary manslaughter. They went on trial separately, a move their attorneys insisted was necessary to “promote fairness” and “avoid prejudice,” but both were found guilty of all four counts. A jury took just 11 hours to convict Jennifer and just over a day for James. It marked the first time parents were being held responsible for their child carrying out a school shooting.

Then, on Tuesday, April 9, they were both sentenced to 10 to 15 years in prison, the maximum allowable. The sentencing hearing was especially emotional for the victims’ families, who gave impact statements and accused the Crumbleys of a lack of remorse for their son’s actions, blaming them for not getting their son help despite the numerous red flags.

Nicole Beausoleil, mother of 17-year-old Madisyn Baldwin, one of the teens killed, held no punches back when she told the Crumbleys they “failed as parents” and “the punishment you face will never be enough,” according to Newsweek.

The Crumbleys also gave statements, begging for leniency, saying they had no idea their son was capable of such violence. They will receive credit for time already served.

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