Mother of an Oxford student that was shot reacts to guilty plea

‘It was really hard to see him cry today because he doesn’t do that a lot’

The mother of Aiden Watson, a student that was shot in the Oxford High School shooting, reacts to Crumbley's guilty plea.

OXFORD, Mich. – The mother of an Oxford High School shooting survivor spoke Monday after Ethan Crumbley’s guilty plea.

The hearing on Monday proved so emotional as many parents did not make themselves available to talk about it.

But Aiden Watson’s mother, Linda Watson, talked about what it’s been like these past 11 months.

Linda Watson said a particularly chilling moment for her occurred at Monday’s (Oct. 24) hearing.

Lawyer: “You assaulted Mr. Aiden Watson by shooting him with a 9mm handgun, and it was your intention to kill him?

Ethan Crumbley: “Yes.”

“The hardest thing to hear is your child’s name and then to have him say yes, that he did shoot my son with the intent to murder him,” said Linda Watson. “I can’t even describe that emotion.”

Read: Sheriff: Oxford High School shooter used 9 mm pistol recently purchased by father

Local 4 first brought you Watson’s story the days after the shooting, where a wounded Watson was hopping out of an SUV owned by a nearby piano moving store owner.

The store owner helped bandage the through-and-through gunshot to Watson’s leg, and then Watson’s mother burst in and bear-hugged him in a highly emotional moment.

Yet Monday’s hearing brought on stronger emotions.

“It was hard, and he squeezed my hand so hard,” Linda Watson said.

Crumbley’s guilty plea meant no trial and brought out crucial new evidence.

“It’s hard to hear it, but it’s good to hear it,” Linda Watson said. “He had the gun with him in his backpack, and now we know that if anyone would’ve checked it, they would have found it, and it never would have happened. Four kids would be here.”

The four kids that are not here are what’s leaving lasting emotional and physical scars.

“It was really hard to see him cry today because he doesn’t do that a lot,” Linda Watson said. “He’s trying to be very tough. But physically, he has things that he has to deal with and that he didn’t have to before. Emotionally absolutely, we’re trying to work through a lot of that trauma.”

During the shooting, Aiden Watson was shot in the leg while standing in the hallway. He hobbled into a classroom, where his friend grabbed him and ran out of the front door, where they later met up with the piano mover for assistance.

Read: Here’s what’s next for Oxford High School shooter after pleading guilty during Monday’s hearing

About the Authors:

Rod Meloni is an Emmy Award-winning Business Editor on Local 4 News and a Certified Financial Planner™ Professional.

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.