PONTIAC, Mich. (FOX 2) - Ethan Crumbley pled guilty to all 24 counts against him, withdrawing an insanity defense and instead accepting guilt for his involvement in the mass shooting at Oxford High School in 2021.
The 16-year-old accepted guilt to four counts of murder, one count of terrorism, seven counts of assault with intent to murder, and 12 counts of possession of a firearm while in the commission of a felony.
Crumbley signed his plea agreement last week, giving up his right to a trial which was originally scheduled for January.
Oakland County Prosecutor Karen McDonald said no plea negotiations, offers, agreements, or sentencing reductions were offered.
"Sir on that Nov. 30, 2021 in Oakland County Michigan, did you bring a 9mm Sig Sauer handgun and 50 mm rounds of ammunition to the Oxford high school?" asked Prosecutor Marc Keast.
"Yes sir," Crumbley responded.
Crumbley answered "yes" to all questions from the assistant prosecutor, including admitting he killed four people and attempted to kill several others.
"We are not aware of any other case anywhere in the country where a mass shooter has been convicted of terrorism on state charges. No one has ever been convicted of similar charges under these circumstances in acts of targeted violence like this," McDonald said after Crumbley's plea.
A tentative court date is scheduled for Feb. 9, 2023, which will precede a sentencing hearing. Factors will be considered before it will be decided if he gets life without parole.
Sheriff Michael Bouchard, who wants Crumbley to receive life without parole, thanked McDonald and her team for "holding, in my opinion, what is truly a twisted and evil person accountable."
McDonald said that the plea will allow all people who were inside Oxford High School that day to speak about how the shooting impacted them if they want to.
"Today is about some small closure that this is not going to be a trial," McDonald said. "This is hard for them (the victims), but it’s a step forward."
More Oxford School news:
- James and Jennifer Crumbley request release from jail as Oxford High School shooting cases progress
- Ven Johnson says Oxford High School missed 'stop signs' before shooting
- Prosecutor Karen McDonald seeks to curb gun violence by reporting advanced warning signs
The hearing follows months of court dates and evidence hearings as both Crumbley's case and the case against his parents have proceeded. Crumbely originally filed a defense of insanity earlier this year. He's been incarcerated in adult jail in Oakland County since his arrest Nov. 30.
Originally we filed a notice of insanity but based on the conversations we have had and the review of the discovery we felt like withdrawing that," Crumbley's attorney Paulette Loftin said.
Questions surrounding that day and the days and weeks leading up to the mass shooting have been the subject of court hearings involving both the Oxford School district and cases against James and Jennifer Crumbley.
That includes entries in the 16-year-old's diary that discussed his mental state and plans to carry out the largest mass shooting in Michigan history.
There has also been witness testimony about meetings between Ethan Crumbley and school officials following several troubling reports that he had expressed a fascination for violence, guns, and had been isolated.
During his plea hearing, Crumbley said he obtained a handgun after asking his parents to buy him one. He also picked out the gun, gave his dad the money to purchase it, and obtained it while it was unsecured.