Oxford High School shooting suspect Ethan Crumbley's mother Jennifer had allegedly sent him text messages as the 15-year-old he unleashed a barrage of gunfire that killed four students and wounded at least seven others. Prosecutors have revealed that while Crumbley as spraying bullets inside the Michigan High School, his mother sent him a text saying "Ethan, don't do it."
The shocking revelations prove that the teen's parents may have anticipated or were aware that Crumbley could take such a horrifying step. Crumley's parents are suspected to be on the run now and are being hunted by state and federal authorities after a prosecutor announced involuntary manslaughter charges against them on Friday.
Prosecutors revealed on Friday that Crumbley's mother Jennifer sent him texts warning him not to get caught after he was found reading about ammunition on his phone while in class and telling him "don't do it" after initial reports of shots fired at the school became public.
Jennifer sent this text at 1.22 pm on that day. However, Crumbley had reportedly already opened fire at 12.51 pm.
That isn't just one of the texts that Jennifer sent. She had sent multiple texts to her son that speaks a lot about the mental state of Crumbley before the shooting. Lieutenant Tim Willis said that Crumbley was searching for ammunition on his cell phone in class and got caught by a teacher, who reported it. The school called and emailed his parents, but did not receive a response.
However, detectives said that Jennifer texted her son: "LOL I'm not mad at you. You have to learn how to not get caught."
This means the parents, at least the mom, was well aware of their son's intentions. Crumbley used his father's handgun to carry out the shooting in his school, which was bought on Black Friday.
On Friday, prosecutors revealed that the gun was a Christmas gift to Crumbley by his parents and his father, James had gone with him to buy it on Black Friday. Crumbley subsequently posted images of the gun on social media with the caption: "just got my new beauty today [heart emoji] sig sauer 9mm any questions I will answer," she said.
Jennifer Crumbley also posted to social media, "mom and son day testing out his new Christmas present."
Father Suspected Son
After news reports began circulating that shots had been fired at the high school and Jennifer concerns grew and she texted: "Ethan don't do it," James too rushed home looking for the gun. Unable to find the gun, he called 911 to report it missing. He told the dispatcher that he believed his son was the shooter at the high school.
Oakland County Prosecutor Karen McDonald said the parents' actions went "far beyond negligence". "The parents were the only individuals in the position to know the access to weapons", she said, noting that the gun "seems to have been just freely available to that individual", referring to Ethan.
On Friday, Jennifer and James Crumbley were charged with four counts each of involuntary manslaughter, a rare move by prosecutors who said the parents failed to secure their guns and didn't respond to their son's distressing behavior.
However, law enforcement officials said that both Jennifer and James have gone missing now and are now being treated as fugitives. The couple reportedly withdrew $4,000 from an ATM and has not been seen since Thursday night, when they were under surveillance at a motel where they had been staying since the shooting.
The Crumbleys attorneys, Shannon Smith and Mariell Lehman, however, insisted that their clients were not on the lam and were returning to face the charges. Police and FBI are, however, not buying their version. They are now officially considered fugitives. A reward of up to $10,000 was being offered for information leading to the capture of Jennifer and James each, federal agents announced Friday night, as they released "Wanted" posters of the pair.