Michigan school shooting: teenager, parents back in court

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Two parents charged with their son in a fatal shooting at a Michigan school are returning to court asking for a lower bond to get out of jail.

James and Jennifer Crumbley have been locked up since December 4, unable to meet $500,000 bond. They hope a judge will be willing to reduce it to $100,000 on Friday.

The Crumbleys are charged with manslaughter in the Nov. 30 shooting at Oxford High School, which killed four teenagers and injured others. They are accused of making a gun accessible to their son Ethan Crumbley and refusing to take him home earlier today when school counselors confronted them with distressing drawings of violence.

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“The last thing they expected was for a school shooting to happen or for their son to be responsible for it,” defense attorneys Shannon Smith and Mariell Lehman said in a court filing.

Separately, Ethan, 15, also faces a hearing on Friday. He is charged as an adult with murder and other crimes.

Prosecutors oppose the parents’ request for a lower bond. They noted the former Crumbleys had been missing for hours when the charges were announced Dec. 3 before police found them miles away at a Detroit art studio early the next morning.

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Smith said they had planned to appear in court on December 4.

The Crumbleys “will run away if given the chance,” prosecutors said in a court filing, noting that they were behind on mortgage payments and had put their home up for sale.

Students at Oxford High are expected to return to school next week for the first time since the shooting, but in a different building. The high school, located about 50 kilometers north of Detroit, could reopen during the week of January 23.

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