James and Jennifer Crumbley Ask Court to Lower Bond to $100K, Offer to Wear Ankle Monitors

Defense attorney Shannon Smith, who represents James and Jennifer Crumbley, parents of the teenager charged with killing four students at Michigan's Oxford High School, requested Wednesday the court lower their bond to $100,000, offering to wear ankle monitors if released.

"The Crumbleys, like every parent and community member, are devastated by the school shooting," said Smith and co-counsel Mariell Lehman in a court filing. "The last thing they expected was that a school shooting would take place, or that their son would be responsible."

James and Jennifer Crumbley have been charged with involuntary manslaughter and were each jailed on a $500,000 bond after their arrest on Dec. 4. They are accused of allowing Ethan Crumbley access to a gun and failing to take him out of school when summoned regarding his writing before the shooting on Nov. 30.

They were arrested at a Detroit art studio they were hiding in around 1:30 a.m. the day after they were charged with four counts of involuntary manslaughter and failed to show in court. Their failure to show resulted in a manhunt, with even the U.S. marshals announcing a maximum reward for $10,000 each for information leading to their arrests, the AP reported.

Smith said they were going to appear the next day at a different court that managed Saturday arraignments and were not attempting to run away. She also said the gun "was locked."

During a hearing on Zoom, James and Jennifer Crumbley pleaded not guilty to the counts of involuntary manslaughter.

Oakland County prosecutor Karen McDonald said she would argue against a lower bond. A spokesperson from McDonald's office said they could be sentenced to up to 15 years in prison each.

Crumbley Parents, Lower Bond Request, Involuntary Manslaughter
This undated combo of photos provided by the Oakland County Sheriff's Office shows James Crumbley, left, and Jennifer Crumbley, the parents of Ethan Crumbley, a teen accused of killing four students in a shooting at Oxford High School, in Michigan. James and Jennifer Crumbley have been charged with involuntary manslaughter and were each jailed on a $500,000 bond after their arrest on Dec. 4. Oakland County Sheriff's Office via AP, File

Smith acknowledged that Jennifer Crumbley sent a text message to her son that day, telling him "don't do it." But Smith said it was a plea for him to not kill himself after the shooting at Oxford High School had already occurred and the gun was missing from home.

Ethan Crumbley, 15, is charged as an adult with murder and other crimes.

"It is clear from the media appearances by Ms. McDonald that this case is one she takes very personally, was filed out of anger and filed in an effort to send a message to gun owners," Smith said of the charges against the parents.

A judge is not expected to consider the new bond request until Jan. 7.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Crumbley Parents, Lower Bond Request, Involuntary Manslaughter
During a hearing on Zoom, James and Jennifer Crumbley pleaded not guilty to the counts of involuntary manslaughter on Dec. 4. In this photo, they appear in 52nd District Court for a probable cause conference in the case of the Oxford High School mass shooting Dec. 14, 2021, in Rochester Hills, Michigan. Bill Pugliano/Getty Images