James, Jennifer Crumbley heading to trial for involuntary manslaughter charges

Oxford counselor Shawn Hopkins discusses what happened the day of the shooting

ROCHESTER HILLS, Mich. – The parents of Tate Myre heard Thursday for the first time from Oxford High School counselor Shawn Hopkins.

Hopkins took everyone inside the meeting that had taken place just hours before the school shooting.

“I asked if he was a threat to himself or others,” said Hopkins.

Hopkins had Ethan Crumbley in his office, along with his violent drawings and words, “My life is useless,” written on a math assignment during class.

More: Counselor’s perspective, disturbing journal, ‘messy’ home: New evidence revealed in Oxford shooting case

On Thursday (Feb. 24), we heard from the school counselor who confronted suspected Oxford High School shooter Ethan Crumbley about those troubling drawings on a math assignment. The counselor's testimony comes as James and Jennifer Crumbley stand charged with involuntary manslaughter in the case. The school counselor went step by step through what happened that day.

Ethan Crumbley sat with the alleged gun inside his backpack. Moments later, Ethan’s parents, James and Jennifer Crumbley, then arrived.

“What happened when they walked in?” a prosecutor asked Hopkins.

“It was different than other meetings that I’ve seen,” Hopkins said.

“Why is that?” a prosecutor asked.

“They were not friendly or showing care to their son,” Hopkins said.

“Did they greet him?” a prosecutor asked.

“No,” Hopkins said.

“Did they touch him?” a prosecutor asked.

“No,” Hopkins said.

“Did they hug him?” a prosecutor asked.

“No,” Hopkins said.

Hopkins says his risk assessment of Ethan Crumbley told him that he was suicidal. He told the parents that they needed to immediately get their son professional help.

“I am concerned that he needs somebody to talk to for mental health support,” Hopkins said.

“What was their response?” a prosecutor asked.

“(They said) ‘today was not an option’ because they had to return to work,” Hopkins said.

“I wrote Ethan (Crumbley) a pass back to class,” Hopkins said. “I thought it was a really rough situation to be showing signs of needing help, of needing support, and it felt like he (Ethan Crumbley) got the opposite.”

James and Jennifer Crumbley currently face a trial and a jury on four counts of involuntary manslaughter each. Their lawyers asked Thursday for a lowered bond for the Crumbley parents, which the judge denied.

The father of Tate Myre is saying that Oxford schools owes him and the Oxford families an apology.

More: Complete Oxford High School shooting coverage

About the Authors:

Local 4 Defender Shawn Ley is an Emmy award-winning journalist who has been with Local 4 News for more than a decade.

Brandon Carr is a digital content producer for ClickOnDetroit and has been with WDIV Local 4 since November 2021. Brandon is the 2015 Solomon Kinloch Humanitarian award recipient for Community Service.