The 15-year-old suspect in Tuesday’s school shooting at Oxford High School in Michigan is being charged with one count of terrorism, four counts of first-degree murder and seven other counts of attempted murder, and Oakland County, MI Prosecutor Karen C. McDonald used an afternoon press briefing to call for stricter gun control.
The suspect was identified only once by name as Ethan Crumbley. According to the Daily Mail, the suspect lives in Oxford with his parents, James and Jennifer Crumbley. They have hired an attorney while he is being held in a juvenile facility. The Detroit Free Press said McDonald will prosecute the teen as an adult.
The Daily Mail has published images of the suspect from social media. He is a bespectacled, baby-faced teen who allegedly may have been bullied. He allegedly used his father’s recently-purchased Sig Sauer SP2022, a 9mm semi-auto pistol that takes a 15-round magazine. Responding police seized the handgun when they took the suspect into custody inside the school. There were seven live rounds in the magazine.
The gun could become the focus of this case, at least temporarily, after McDonald, a Democrat, called for tougher gun control laws, including a hint at mandatory safe storage requirements.
“We know that owning a gun means securing it properly,” she stated, “locking it and keeping ammo separate and not allowing access to others, particularly minors.
“We have to hold individuals accountable,” she added, adding that more charges may be coming.
Responding to questions from reporters, McDonald observed, “If the incident yesterday of four children being murdered is not enough to revisit our gun laws, I don’t know what is.”
Killed in the shooting were Hana St. Juliana, 14, Tate Myre, 16, and Madisyn Baldwin, 17. Wednesday morning, 15-year-old Justin Shilling died from his wounds. There is a movement to name the high school’s football stadium in honor of Myre, a member of the football team who was mortally wounded when he apparently tried to disarm the shooter.
Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard estimated more than 30 rounds were fired, meaning the suspect would have had to reload more than once. The suspect’s father reported purchased the handgun last Friday, and he also apparently purchased at least one additional magazine. The pistol comes from the factory with two magazines.
During her remarks, prosecutor McDonald indicated the deadly shooting had been planned ahead of time. She would not tell whether the victims were specifically targeted, however.
“Facts in the shooting suggest this was not an impulsive act,” McDonald said.
Still, she repeatedly contended the shooting is justification for additional gun controls.
“Responsible gun ownership is imperative, it’s critical,” she insisted.
In addition to the other charges, McDonald is also charging the teen with a dozen counts of possession of a firearm in the commission of a felony.