Status: 04.12.2021 11:10 a.m.
The 15-year-old suspect’s parents were arrested after the fatal shooting at a school in Michigan. They are accused of negligent homicide in four cases – they are said to have bought the son’s weapon.
The parents of the alleged gunman at a school in the US state of Michigan have been caught. “The two fugitives were located and arrested. Compliments from the Detroit Police Department,” the Oakland Sheriffs Office wrote on Facebook. James and Jennifer C. were discovered on the first floor of a factory building in Detroit, a police spokesman told CNN. According to the police, the arrest was uneventful.
According to CNN, the couple withdrew $ 4,000 from an ATM on Friday and switched off their cell phones. The two stayed gone all day. The police offered a $ 10,000 reward for clues about their whereabouts. The parents’ lawyers said they had left the city “for their own safety” and wanted to face the authorities. Shortly before the arrest, according to the police, the couple’s vehicle was found in Detroit, which had brought the authorities on the trail of the two.
Charges against parents are very rare
According to District Attorney Karen McDonald on Friday, James and Jennifer C. are each charged with negligent homicide on four counts. The parents bought the murder weapon, gave their underage son access to the gun and ignored warnings, McDonald said, according to CNN. Charges against the parents of a perpetrator in such an act of violence in schools are very rare, but in this case the facts are “outrageous,” said the prosecutor. “What I’m trying to do is promote a policy of deterrence.”
The 15-year-old opened fire on Tuesday at his school in the small town of Oxford, north of Detroit. He killed four classmates between the ages of 14 and 17 and injured seven other people. After the fact, he was arrested without resistance and was subsequently charged, among other things, with quadruple murder and terrorism. According to adult criminal law, the teenager should be tried. He faces life imprisonment.
“Christmas present” for the son
The mother of the perpetrator is said to have described the weapon, a semi-automatic pistol, on online platforms as a “Christmas present” for her son, according to McDonald. According to the police, the 15-year-old had recorded a video on his cell phone the evening before the crime, in which he announced the attack for the next day. The next morning the school administration asked him to talk to his parents because drawings depicting violent fantasies had been discovered on his desk.
“The thoughts don’t stop. Help me,” read a picture of a pistol next to it. In addition, the student had drawn a cartridge and a corpse, along with the message: “My life is useless.” However, the parents refused to bring their son home. The 15-year-old then returned to class. Later he took out the pistol he had hidden in his backpack in the school toilet and opened fire.
Message to gun owners
“The idea of parents reading these words and knowing at the same time that their son had access to a lethal weapon they gave him is outrageous and I think it’s criminal,” said McDonald. She also accused the parents of not checking that the teenager had the gun with him. The indictment against James and Jennifer C. seeks to “hold accountable those who contributed to this tragedy and send a message to gun owners that they have a responsibility”.
Fatal incidents continue to occur in the United States because shooters open fire in schools. Gun law in the United States differs from state to state, but firearms such as pistols and assault rifles are usually relatively easy to come by. Stricter gun laws usually fail because of the Republicans in Congress and the powerful gun lobby.
After gun violence in Michigan: parents of the 15-year-old perpetrator are charged
Claudia Sarre, ARD Washington, December 4th, 2021 6:16 am