In a unanimous decision, Jennifer Crumbley has been convicted of involuntary manslaughter in connection with her son Ethan’s deadly school shooting in 2021. Her conviction — as the mother of a convicted shooter — sets a new precedent for prosecuting school shootings.
In 2021, a then-15-year-old Ethan Crumbley opened fire in a hallway at his high school in Oxford, Michigan, killing four of his classmates. Ethan pleaded guilty to 24 charges including first-degree murder, and in December he was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
His parents, Jennifer and James Crumbley, faced charges stemming from the fact that they bought a gun for Ethan mere days before he took it to school. The prosecutors claimed they were aware of Ethan’s deteriorating mental state and yet did not inform the school about the weapon. The case gained national headlines because rarely, if ever, do prosecutors attempt to hold the parents of school shooters accountable for their children’s actions. Both parents pleaded not guilty to four counts of involuntary manslaughter, one for each of the students killed.
On Tuesday, Jennifer was found guilty on all four charges, each of which carries a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison. She will be sentenced on April 9. Her husband’s trial is scheduled to begin in March.