Oxford School Shooter Parents Sentenced to 10 to 15 Years

Both parents were found guilty of four counts of involuntary manslaughter and faced up to 15 years in prison for each count.

Oxford School Shooter Parents Sentenced to 10 to 15 Years

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The parents of a teen who shot and killed four people at Oxford High School in 2021 were sentenced to 10 to 15 years in prison Tuesday.

Jennifer and James Crumbley were both found guilty of four counts of involuntary manslaughter, making them the first parents in the U.S. to be held responsible for their child carrying out a mass school shooting. They both faced up to 15 years in prison for each count.

Prosecutors say 45-year-old Jennifer Crumbley was “grossly negligent” in giving a gun to her then-15-year-old son and that she had a duty under state law to prevent him from harming others. Killed in the shooting were 17-year-old Madisyn Baldwin, 16-year-old Tate Myre, 14-year-old Hana St. Juliana, and 17-year-old Justin Shilling.

Prosecutors maintained throughout James Crumbley’s trial that he should have reasonably foreseen that his son was troubled and may resort to violence. Prosecutors said Crumbley purchased the gun used in the shooting for his son during a time when he was struggling emotionally after his best friend moved away.

Judge Cheryl Matthews said each action or inaction created a ripple effect and that she believes the sentences are “in the best interests of justice and are reasonable and proportionate.”

“Parents are not expected to be psychic, but these convictions are not about poor parenting. These convictions confirm repeated acts, or lack of acts, that could have halted an oncoming runaway train — about repeatedly ignoring things that would make a reasonable person feel the hair on the back of their neck,” she added. “Guidelines in this manner do not capture of the catastrophic impact of the acts or in the action. And in these matters, the guidelines do not take into account the complete lack of insight both defendants have for their behavior to this very day.”

Both Crumbleys have already served 858 days in jail while awaiting trial, according to Yahoo, and those days served will be deducted from their sentence.

Jennifer Crumbley’s attorneys requested she be sentenced to time served and house arrest. James Crumbley’s lawyers asked for 28 months in prison with credit for time served as well as the maximum period of supervised release.

James Crumbley apologized to the victims’ families during his statement.

“I really want the families of Madisyn Baldwin, Hana St. Juliana, Tate Myre and Justin Shilling to know how truly sorry I am and how devastated I was when I heard what happened to them. I have cried for you and the loss of your children more times than I can count,” he said. “I cannot express how much I wish that I had known what was going on with him or what was going to happen, because I absolutely would have done a lot of things differently.”

Jennifer Crumbley previously said during her testimony that she would not have done anything different had she been given the chance.

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About the Author

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Amy is Campus Safety’s Executive Editor. Prior to joining the editorial team in 2017, she worked in both events and digital marketing.

Amy has many close relatives and friends who are teachers, motivating her to learn and share as much as she can about campus security. She has a minor in education and has worked with children in several capacities, further deepening her passion for keeping students safe.

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