The parents of the Michigan student accused of killing four classmates and wounding seven others during a mass shooting at Oxford High School earlier this week pled not guilty to four counts of involuntary manslaughter charges Saturday morning after they allegedly tried to escape authorities.
James and Jennifer Crumbley appeared for their arraignment at an Oakland court Saturday morning, where a judge set a $500,000 bond for each individual and ordered them to hand over any firearms they have.
The couple's legal team argued during the hearing Saturday that they were not attempting to flee despite reports suggesting that the two were on the run after prosecutors charged them with involuntary manslaughter following revelations that their 15-year-old son, Ethan, took the 9mm semi-automatic handgun he used in Tuesday's mass shooting from their home. The Crumbleys also allegedly ignored signs that their son was planning the shooting.
"Mr. Crumbley, as with Mrs. Crumbley, is not a flight risk. He is not a danger to the community," defense attorney Mariell Lehman said. "There's no risk that they're going to flee prosecution. They were never fleeing prosecution."
The judge said that the couple must wear GPS trackers if they post bond.
The Crumbleys were declared fugitives when they disappeared Friday and failed to appear at an arraignment scheduled for that afternoon. They were apprehended by police in Detroit around 1:45 am Saturday morning.
Defense attorneys said they had told the prosecution that the couple left for their own safety and would be turning themselves in for their arraignment. However, the prosecution, noting that the Crumbleys withdrew $4,000 from an ATM in Rochester Hills, cast doubt on the claim that the two had not attempted to flee.
"They could have turned themselves in with no evidence and no efforts on behalf of law enforcement," lead prosecutor Karen McDonald said. "Instead, they fled."
Ethan Crumbley, who is being held without bond after being charged with several felony counts, including a charge of terrorism, will be tried as an adult for the shooting and, If convicted, faces life in prison.