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US Marshals search for school shooter’s parents; attorney says they’ll turn themselves in

Ethan Crumbley. (Oakland County Sheriff’s Office/TNS)

The search for James and Jennifer Crumbley has been taken over by the U.S. Marshal Service, authorities announced Friday evening.

Working with the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office, marshals are continuing an hours-long manhunt for the parents of Ethan Crumbley, the 15-year-old student who is accused of the Oxford High School shooting that killed four fellow students and injured seven others. The search for the couple comes hours after charges were pressed against them in connection with the incident.

Oakland County Prosecutor Karen McDonald announced four involuntary manslaughter charges each for the Crumbleys earlier Friday and they were expected to be arraigned by video Friday in 52-3 District Court in Rochester Hills.

During a hearing that started around noon before Judge Julie Nicholson, a lieutenant with the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office said the parents were not in custody. The Oakland County Fugitive Team, along with several agencies, are searching for the couple as of Friday afternoon.

“The action of fleeing and ignoring their attorney certainly adds weight to the charges,” Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard said in a release Friday. “They cannot run from their part in this tragedy.”

However, the Crumbleys’ attorneys, Smith and Mariell Lehman, said that despite reports, the couple is not on the run and will be returning to the area to be arraigned.

“The Crumbleys left town on the night of the tragic shooting for their own safety,” they said in a message to the Free Press:

“On Thursday night we contacted the Oakland County prosecutor to discuss this matter and to advise her that James and Jennifer Crumbley would be turning themselves in to be arraigned. Instead of communicating with us, the prosecutor held a press conference to announce charges.

“The Crumbleys left town on the night of the tragic shooting for their own safety. They are returning to the area to be arraigned. They are not fleeing from law enforcement despite recent comments in media reports.”

FBI officials in Detroit said they are not involved with the search for the Crumbleys Friday afternoon.

“At this time, we are not assisting with the search for Ethan Crumbley’s parents,” a statement to the Free Press reads. “However, we are prepared to provide any assistance requested by the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office.”

Police released an alert to be on the lookout for the parents, who drive a 2021 black Kia Seltos SUV with the license plate DQG5203 and own a white Kia Soul station wagon with the plate DZH8994, according to Secretary of State records and the Oakland County sheriff’s office.

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