May 18, 2024

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Parents sentenced to at least 10 years in prison for murder of American teenager

Parents sentenced to at least 10 years in prison for murder of American teenager

The parents of a U.S. teenager sentenced to life in prison for killing four students at his school in 2021 with a weapon they gave him were sentenced Tuesday to 10 to 15 years in prison, a first in the United States.

• Read more: The father of the teenager responsible for the school shooting is convicted of murder

• Read more: The mother of a teenage girl responsible for a mass shooting at a high school has been found guilty of manslaughter

The mother, Jennifer Crumbley, 46, and the father, James Crumbley, 47, were convicted of manslaughter in two separate trials, in February and March, in unprecedented convictions for parents in the country.

“Parents are not expected to be prophets, but these rulings do not punish bad parents. These rulings repeatedly confirm actions or lack of actions that could have stopped an impending disaster,” said Michigan District Court Judge Cheryl Matthews.

Getty Images via AFP

He sentenced them to the same sentence of “10 to 15 years in prison,” having already served two and a half years in pretrial detention. They were sentenced to a maximum of 15 years in prison.

The lawyer asked him to pronounce the harshest sentences possible against the accused “taking into account the impact of their gross negligence”.

Before sentencing, both Jennifer Crumbley and James Crumbley made it clear that they would have acted differently if they had known the signs of the tragedy before the run, contrary to the impression they gave during their respective trials.

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During the events their son Ethan Crumble, 15, killed two girls and two boys aged 14 to 17 on November 30, 2021 and injured six students and a teacher.

One gun, 50 bullets

At her trial, Jennifer Crumbley testified that her husband had brought back a Sig Sauer 9mm pistol as a Christmas present a few days earlier. He said he took his son to the shooting site the next day.

Although the parents were called to school on the day of the tragedy, teachers who discovered the teenager's “horrifying” drawing advised them to psychologically monitor their son and left without bringing him home.

Ethan Crumble was tried as an adult and sentenced to life in prison without parole in Oakland County Court in December.

The teenager pleaded guilty to bringing a gun with 50 rounds of ammunition to his high school in October 2022 and shooting students.

In December, the mother of a six-year-old student who fatally shot his school teacher was sentenced by Virginia state courts to two years in prison for parental neglect.

Earlier in the month, the father of a man accused of shooting and killing seven people during a US National Day celebration near Chicago in 2022 pleaded guilty to reckless conduct for helping buy the weapon used in the killing.