Public Defender Appointed for Oxford Shooter, Parents Hire High Priced Legal Team
Accused Oxford High School shooter Ethan Crumbley has been assigned a public defender while parents James and Jennifer Crumbley have retained the services of a high-profile legal team to represent themselves.
Who Has Been Hired to Represent the Crumbleys?
Paulette Michel Loftin has been appointed by the court to represent the 15-year-old who has been charged as an adult with 24 counts, including terrorism and murder charges. The Crumbleys have employed Shannon Smith and Mariell Lehman to represent them on charges related to the mass shooting on November 30. The high-profile legal team was retained before they were charged with four counts each of involuntary manslaughter.
Smith has taken on highly publicized cases in the past, representing disgraced Michigan State University gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar in 2017.
Analyst Says Parents May Face a Tougher Battle
Criminal Defense Attorney Bill Swor tells the Detroit Free Press that the parents may be facing a more intense legal battle than their son.
“They’re adults and he’s a child, and the father bought the gun. The mother made the (social media) postings, and public officials... made public statements that are very prejudicial,” he said, referring to Oakland County Prosecutor Karen McDonald's implication that the Crumbleys ignored warning signs that their son may have exhibited.
The Independent reports that the boy's parents' decision not to hire a lawyer for their son may be an attempt to distance themselves from any culpability they may face for their son's alleged crimes.
All three Crumbleys are currently being held at the Oakland County Jail.