Replay: Parents of Oxford school shooting suspect back in court

James and Jennifer Crumbley are back in court Thursday morning for the continuation of their preliminary exam, which will help a judge decide whether to order the couple to stand trial for their alleged roles in the Oxford school shooting.

The hearing is scheduled to resume at 8:30 a.m. as the prosecution lines up more witnesses to bolster their claims that the Crumbleys are responsible for the deaths of four students who were killed in the massacre, allegedly at the hands of their son.

An Oakland County sheriff's deputy instructs Jennifer Crumbley to put her mask back up. The parents of accused Oxford High School gunman Ethan Crumbley, Jennifer and James Crumbley are in the 52-3 District Courtroom of Judge Julie Nicholson in Rochester on Dec. 14, 2021.

Multiple witnesses have already testified for the prosecution, who allege the Crumbleys missed many red flags about their troubled son, bought him a gun instead of getting him help, failed to secure that gun, and never told the school about the gun when they had a chance.

More: Testimony: Ethan Crumbley asked dad for help. He told him to 'suck it up'

More: Student from Oxford High School seeks gun reform: 'We deserve to feel safe'

The texts were disclosed at the end of a nearly eight-hour preliminary examination, which is the stage when the prosecution tries to convince a judge that it has enough evidence to take the case to trial.

So far, five witnesses have testified, including:

  • A horse farm owner who said Jennifer Crumbley expressed concern to her that her son was "weird" for not having any friends — except for one who moved away — and for playing on the internet or video games most of the time. On the day of the shooting, she said, Jennifer Crumbley texted her "My son ruined so many lives today."

  • Jennifer Crumbley's boss, who testified that Jennifer Crumbley expressed concern that she had failed her son as a mother after seeing a picture he had drawn in class of a gun, with the words: "The thoughts won't stop. Help me." On the day of the shooting, he said the mother texted him late that night: "I need my job, please don't judge me for what my son did." He was perplexed. “I was surprised she was worried about her job at that point; I thought she would be more concerned about what was going on," he testified.

  • Jennifer Crumbley's co-worker, who testified that Jennifer Crumbley confided that that she was having an affair, that she and her husband were having marital issues, that both were seeing other people, and that she sometimes left work to spend time with the man she was seeing.

The prosecution may call as many as 30 witnesses to help push the case to trial.

The Crumbleys, who are facing involuntary manslaughter charges, have denied wrongdoing and say they had no way of knowing their son would carry out a mass shooting that day and that they properly secured the gun.

Ethan Crumbley, 15, is facing terrorism and first-degree murder charges.

Please return to for full coverage of Thursday's hearing involving the parents.


This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Oxford school shooting: Parents Jennifer, James Crumbley back in court