Attorney for the mom of a 15-year-old school shooter opened her manslaughter trial by quoting Taylor Swift's 'Bad Blood'

Attorney for the mom of a 15-year-old school shooter opened her manslaughter trial by quoting Taylor Swift's 'Bad Blood'
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Jennifer Crumbley enters the courtroom of Oakland County, Michigan for her involuntary manslaughter trial.
Jennifer Crumbley enters the courtroom for her involuntary manslaughter trial.Associated Press
  • Jennifer and James Crumbley are facing manslaughter charges for their son's school shooting.

  • The case against against the parents is the first of its kind.

  • In her opening remarks on Thursday, Jennifer Crumbley's attorney quoted Taylor Swift's "Bad Blood."

In a fist-of-its-kind case, the parents of a 15-year-old school shooter in Michigan are facing manslaughter charges, accused of making a firearm too easily accessible and ignoring warning signs.

And as the high-profile trial got underway on Thursday, the attorney for the mother — in a surprising choice — warmed up the jury with Taylor Swift Lyrics.

Jennifer Crumbley and her husband James are both charged with involuntary manslaughter after their son carried out a school shooting in Oxford, Michigan in 2021 that left four dead. Both parents face up to 60 years in prison if convicted.

The Crumbleys originally planned to stand trial together but in November requested separate trials after prosecutors claimed in court filings that Jennifer Crumbly blamed her husband for the shooting.

Shannon Smith, an attorney for Jennifer Crumbley, began her opening statement to the jury by reciting a Taylor Swift song. Smith told the jury she had "blasted" Swift's music in the car on the way to court in the morning in an effort to "calm her nerves."

Smith said the quote, "Band-Aids don't stop bullet holes" perfectly "summarized what this case is about." She appeared to be quoting Swift's 2014 smash hit "Bad Blood," which says "Band-Aids don't fix bullet holes, you say sorry just for show."

"It's about the prosecution attempting to put a Band-Aid on problems that can't be fixed with a Band-Aid," Smith told the jury.

Smith went on to say that prosecutors had charged Crumbley in an effort to make the community feel better, to send a message to gun owners, and to make it "feel like somebody is being held responsible," none of which can be accomplished by convicting Crumbley, she said.

"In this case, a Band-Aid will never bring back the lives that were lost," Smith said.

Smith told the jury that much of the evidence they would hear and see is "horrific" and would scare them. But she urged the jurors to focus their frustration on Crumbley's son.

Crumbley's son pleaded guilty in October 2022. A judge sentenced him to life in prison without the possibility of parole in December.

Smith also appeared to begin laying some of the blame on the husband, James Crumbley, saying Jennifer didn't keep track of the family's guns. According to Smith, Jennifer Crumbley did not know where the family's gun was kept or "how to put it in the car." Smith told the jury that the family kept the gun in a locked box in the parents' bedroom and that James Crumbley kept the key.

Prosecutor Marc Keast, meanwhile, described Jennifer Crumbley as an unaware mom who had several opportunities to intervene before her 15-year-old murdered his classmates.

Keast presented a math worksheet on which Crumbley's son wrote disturbing messages like "the world is dead" and "my life is useless" that school counselors showed to both parents on the morning of the shooting in an emergency meeting. Keast told the jury that Jennifer Crumbley "abruptly" ended the meeting after just 11 minutes and did not take her son home.

Smith said in court that Jennifer Crumbley intends to take the stand in the trial. Opening statements for James Crumbley's trial are scheduled to begin on March 5.

Read the original article on Business Insider