Advance Notice: Briefs

Nessel ‘disappointed’ Oxford school officials rejected her independent review offer

By: - December 7, 2021 11:47 am

Oxford High School, Dec. 3, 2021 | Allison R. Donahue

Oxford school officials rejected Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel’s offer to review last week’s shooting that killed four students and injured seven other people, she announced late Monday.

Nessel made the offer Sunday, saying her department was the “perfect agency” to investigate the circumstances surrounding the shooting at Oxford High School.

The idea was to conduct an independent investigation.

“I am extremely disappointed that the school district chose to decline my offer to devote the full resources of the Department of Attorney General to review the events leading up to and on November 30th,” Nessel said in a statement. “This tragedy demands a united effort from all of us who serve the Oxford community.”

Many questions have been raised about how Oxford High School officials handled warning signs about Ethan Crumbley, the 15-year-old accused of opening fire at the school. The day before the shooting, Crumbley was caught searching for ammunition on the internet. The next day, a teacher discovered Crumbley had made a disturbing drawing of a bloody figure, gun and bullet, along with the words, “The thoughts won’t stop. Help me.”

School administrators allowed Crumbley to stay in school and also failed to check his backpack, where he had a semiautomatic handgun that he would use hours later.

“Despite this outcome, my department will continue to support the ongoing criminal investigation in Oakland County and looks forward to meeting with parents, students and teachers when they are ready to share their thoughts,” Nessel said. “To that end, we also remain committed to evaluating opportunities for our department to ensure that students in Oxford – and across Michigan – receive the protection they deserve and that guns are kept out of our schools.”

This story first ran in the Detroit Metro Times. Subscribe to their newsletters, and follow them on Google News, Apple News, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or Reddit.

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Steve Neavling
Steve Neavling

Steve Neavling is an award-winning investigative journalist with the Detroit Metro Times. He operated Motor City Muckraker, an online news site devoted to exposing abuses of power and holding public officials accountable. Neavling also hosted Muckraker Report on 910AM from September 2017 to July 2018. Before launching Motor City Muckraker, Neavling was a five-year veteran of the Detroit Free Press, covering Detroit’s city hall.