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Oxford High School shooting suspect Ethan Crumbley's trial delayed 4 months


The murder trial of school shooting suspect Ethan Crumbley has been delayed by four months as his defense team convinced a judge Thursday that it needed more time to go through the massive amount of evidence in the case.

The decision to move the teenager's murder trial from September to January came one day after another judge ordered the release of all evidence held by the Oakland County Sheriff's Office relating to the Nov. 30 massacre, including surveillance video of the shooting. 

The evidence is being released at the request of the families of two students who died in the shooting, Tate Myre  and Justin Shilling, and three other students who survived but were traumatized. Those families have filed a civil lawsuit over the shooting against various school officials, though Oakland County Prosecutor Karen McDonald has said she plans to intervene in the case to prevent the release of the video, and other evidence.

The prosecutor's office is concerned that the release of the video could encourage other school shootings, and that disclosing other evidence could impact the ongoing criminal cases involving Ethan Crumbley and his parents, Jennifer and James Crumbley, who are charged with involuntary manslaughter for their alleged roles in the shooting.

Prosecutors allege that the Crumbleys ignored warning signs that their son was spiraling out of control, and instead of getting him medical help, they bought him a gun — the same gun that he allegedly used in the Nov. 30 mass shooting.

The Crumbleys and their son are being held in the Oakland County Jail, though they are not allowed to communicate with one another.

Their son's trial was scheduled for September, but has now been pushed to Jan. 17. when a jury will decide the fate of 16-year-old Ethan Crumbley, who is charged in the deaths of four students and the  wounding of six students and a teacher.

More: Judge denies Crumbleys' request to drop involuntary manslaughter charges

More: Prosecution to Crumbleys: You can't censor us. We have a duty to the victims

Ethan Crumbley, who was 15 at the time of the shooting, attended a pretrial hearing Thursday morning via Zoom from the Oakland County Jail. Previous efforts to have him moved to a juvenile facility have failed, with Oakland County Circuit Judge Kwame Rowe concluding jail is the most suitable place for him.

Because he is a juvenile housed in an adult jail, federal law mandates that a hearing be held every month to make sure his physical, educational and emotional needs are met, without compromising his safety.

At Thursday's hearing, the judge concluded that the teen's needs are being met in jail, and that his current incarceration status is appropriate.

Ethan Crumbley's next hearing is scheduled for 9 a.m. July 21. 

Contact Tresa Baldas: [email protected]