School chief: Discipline not needed for boy before shooting

  • A well wisher kneels to pray at a memorial on the sign of Oxford High School in Oxford, Mich., Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021. A 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at the school, killing several students and wounding multiple other people, including a teacher.

    A well wisher kneels to pray at a memorial on the sign of Oxford High School in Oxford, Mich., Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021. A 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at the school, killing several students and wounding multiple other people, including a teacher. Associated Press

  • Students hug at a memorial at Oxford High School in Oxford, Mich., Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021. Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at Oxford High School, killing four students and wounding seven other people on Tuesday.

    Students hug at a memorial at Oxford High School in Oxford, Mich., Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021. Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at Oxford High School, killing four students and wounding seven other people on Tuesday. Associated Press

  • An Oakland County Sheriff's deputy hugs family members of a student in the parking lot of Oxford High School in Oxford, Mich., Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021. A 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at the school, killing several students and wounding multiple other people, including a teacher.

    An Oakland County Sheriff's deputy hugs family members of a student in the parking lot of Oxford High School in Oxford, Mich., Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021. A 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at the school, killing several students and wounding multiple other people, including a teacher. Associated Press

  • People attending a vigil embrace at LakePoint Community Church in Oxford, Mich., Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021. Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at Oxford High School, killing several students and wounding multiple other people, including a teacher.

    People attending a vigil embrace at LakePoint Community Church in Oxford, Mich., Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021. Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at Oxford High School, killing several students and wounding multiple other people, including a teacher. Associated Press

  • Joshua McDade, a former student at Oxford High School, attends a vigil at LakePoint Community Church in Oxford, Mich., Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021. Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at Oxford High School, killing several students and wounding multiple other people, including a teacher.

    Joshua McDade, a former student at Oxford High School, attends a vigil at LakePoint Community Church in Oxford, Mich., Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021. Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at Oxford High School, killing several students and wounding multiple other people, including a teacher. Associated Press

  • Emerson Miller, right, leans on her friend Joselyn's shoulder as they listen to Jessi Holt, pastor at LakePoint Community Church, during a prayer vigil at the church after the Oxford High School school shooting, Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021, in Oxford, Mich. (Jake May/The Flint Journal via AP)

    Emerson Miller, right, leans on her friend Joselyn's shoulder as they listen to Jessi Holt, pastor at LakePoint Community Church, during a prayer vigil at the church after the Oxford High School school shooting, Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021, in Oxford, Mich. (Jake May/The Flint Journal via AP) Associated Press

  • Aiden Watson, who was injured at Oxford High School, attends a vigil with his mother at LakePoint Community Church in Oxford, Mich., late Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021. Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at Oxford High School, killing three students and wounding several others, including a teacher.

    Aiden Watson, who was injured at Oxford High School, attends a vigil with his mother at LakePoint Community Church in Oxford, Mich., late Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021. Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at Oxford High School, killing three students and wounding several others, including a teacher. Associated Press

  • Oxford High School sophomore Allison Hepp, 15, holds a candle as she bows her head in prayer during a vigil after the Oxford High School school shootings, Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021, at LakePoint Community Church in Oxford, Mich. (Jake May/The Flint Journal via AP)

    Oxford High School sophomore Allison Hepp, 15, holds a candle as she bows her head in prayer during a vigil after the Oxford High School school shootings, Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021, at LakePoint Community Church in Oxford, Mich. (Jake May/The Flint Journal via AP) Associated Press

  • Michael Roper, an Oxford High School sophomore, listens to prayers during a vigil after the Oxford High School school shootings, Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021, at LakePoint Community Church in Oxford, Mich. (Jake May/The Flint Journal via AP)

    Michael Roper, an Oxford High School sophomore, listens to prayers during a vigil after the Oxford High School school shootings, Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021, at LakePoint Community Church in Oxford, Mich. (Jake May/The Flint Journal via AP) Associated Press

  • Parents walk away with their kids from the Meijer's parking lot, where many students gathered following an active shooter situation at Oxford High School, Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021, in Oxford, Mich. Police took a suspected shooter into custody and there were multiple victims, the Oakland County Sheriff's office said. (Eric Seals/Detroit Free Press via AP)

    Parents walk away with their kids from the Meijer's parking lot, where many students gathered following an active shooter situation at Oxford High School, Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021, in Oxford, Mich. Police took a suspected shooter into custody and there were multiple victims, the Oakland County Sheriff's office said. (Eric Seals/Detroit Free Press via AP) Associated Press

  • Aiden Watson, who was injured at Oxford High School, attends a vigil with his parents at LakePoint Community Church in Oxford, Mich., Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021. Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at Oxford High School, killing three students and wounding several others, including a teacher.

    Aiden Watson, who was injured at Oxford High School, attends a vigil with his parents at LakePoint Community Church in Oxford, Mich., Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021. Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at Oxford High School, killing three students and wounding several others, including a teacher. Associated Press

  • Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at his Michigan high school, killing three students and wounding six other people, including a teacher.

    Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at his Michigan high school, killing three students and wounding six other people, including a teacher. Associated Press

  • People attending a vigil embrace at LakePoint Community Church in Oxford, Mich., Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021. Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at Oxford High School, killing three students and wounding several others, including a teacher.

    People attending a vigil embrace at LakePoint Community Church in Oxford, Mich., Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021. Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at Oxford High School, killing three students and wounding several others, including a teacher. Associated Press

  • Students attend a vigil at LakePoint Community Church in Oxford, Mich., Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021. Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at Oxford High School, killing several students and wounding multiple other people, including a teacher.

    Students attend a vigil at LakePoint Community Church in Oxford, Mich., Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021. Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at Oxford High School, killing several students and wounding multiple other people, including a teacher. Associated Press

  • Police are shown in the parking lot of a Meijer store where Oxford High School students were being reunited with parents in Oxford, Mich., Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021. Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at Oxford High School, killing several students and wounding multiple other people, including a teacher.

    Police are shown in the parking lot of a Meijer store where Oxford High School students were being reunited with parents in Oxford, Mich., Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2021. Authorities say a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at Oxford High School, killing several students and wounding multiple other people, including a teacher. Associated Press

 
 
Posted12/3/2021 7:00 AM

OXFORD TOWNSHIP, Mich. -- A teenager accused of killing four students at a Michigan high school was called to the office before the shooting but 'no discipline was warranted,' the superintendent said Thursday in his first extended remarks since the tragedy.

Tim Throne said Oxford High School looks like a 'war zone' and won't be ready for weeks. But he repeatedly credited students and staff for how they responded to the violence Tuesday.

 

'To say that I am still in shock and numb is probably an understatement,' Throne, grim-faced and speaking slowly, said in a 12-minute video.

Ethan Crumbley, 15, has been charged as an adult with two dozen crimes, including murder, attempted murder and terrorism, for the shooting at the Oakland County school, roughly 30 miles (50 kilometers) north of Detroit.

'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. No discipline was warranted,' Throne said. '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.'

Throne said he couldn't immediately release additional details. Sheriff Mike Bouchard said a day earlier that Crumbley's classroom behavior was a concern on the day of the shooting.

In his remarks, the superintendent said he was asking the sheriff's office to publicly release school video from Tuesday.

'... I want you to be as proud of your sons and daughters as I am,' Throne said.

by signing up you agree to our terms of service
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Earlier Thursday, a prosecutor repeated her criticism of Crumbley's parents, saying their actions went 'far beyond negligence' and that a charging decision would come by Friday.

'The parents were the only individuals in the position to know the access to weapons,' Oakland County prosecutor Karen McDonald said. The gun 'seems to have been just freely available to that individual.'


Four students were killed and seven more people were injured. Three were in hospitals in stable condition.

The semi-automatic gun was purchased legally by Crumbley's father last week, according to investigators.

Parents in the U.S. are rarely charged in school shootings involving their children, even as most minors get guns from a parent or relative's house, according to experts.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

There's no Michigan law that requires gun owners keep weapons locked away from children. McDonald, however, suggested there's more to build a case on.

'All I can say at this point is those actions on mom and dad's behalf go far beyond negligence,' she told WJR-AM. 'We obviously are prosecuting the shooter to the fullest extent. ... There are other individuals who should be held accountable.'

Later at a news conference, McDonald said she hoped to have an announcement 'in the next 24 hours.' She had firmly signaled that Crumbley's parents were under scrutiny when she filed charges against their son Wednesday.

Jennifer and James Crumbley did not return a message left by The Associated Press.

Sheriff Mike Bouchard disclosed Wednesday that the parents met with school officials about their son's classroom behavior, just a few hours before the shooting.

Crumbley stayed in school Tuesday and later emerged from a bathroom with a gun, firing at students in the hallway, police said.

'Should there have been different decisions made?" McDonald said when asked about keeping the teen in school. 'Probably they will come to that conclusion. ' I have not seen anything that would make me think that there's criminal culpability. It's a terrible, terrible tragedy.'

William Swor, a defense lawyer who is not involved in the case, said charging the parents would require a 'very fact-intensive investigation."

'What did they know and when did they know it?' Swor said. 'What advance information did they have about all these things? Did they know anything about his attitude, things of that nature. You're talking about a very heavy burden to bring on the parents.'

Just over half of U.S. states have child access prevention laws related to guns, but they vary widely. Gun control advocates say the laws are often not enforced and the penalties are weak.

'Our laws haven't really adapted to the reality of school shootings and the closest we have are these child access prevention laws,' said Kris Brown, president of the Brady gun control advocacy group.

In 2000, a Flint-area man pleaded no contest to involuntary manslaughter and was sentenced to two years in prison. A 6-year-old boy who was living with him had found a gun in a shoebox and killed a classmate at school.

In 2020, the mother of an Indiana teen was placed on probation for failing to remove guns from her home after her mentally ill son threatened to kill students. He fired shots inside his school in 2018. No one was injured but the boy killed himself.


In Texas, the parents of a student who was accused of killing 10 people at a school in 2018 have been sued over his access to guns.

Meanwhile, dozens of schools in southeastern Michigan canceled classes Thursday due to concerns about threatening messages on social media following the Oxford shooting. Some schools stayed open with a larger police presence.

Bouchard said no threats in Oakland County were found to be credible. Just to the north in Genesee County, a Flint teenager was charged with making a false threat when she recorded a video while riding a school bus and posted it online.

'If you're making threats, we're going to find you," Bouchard said. "It is ridiculous you're inflaming the fears of parents, teachers in the community in the midst of a real tragedy.'

___

This story has been corrected to fix the spelling of the superintendent's last name.

___

AP reporters Kathleen Foody and Sophia Tareen in Chicago contributed to this story.

0 Comments
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 
Article Comments
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.