Michigan School Shooting: Law To Punish Parents Over Children Firing Guns Considered By More States
More states are considering a law that will punish parents if a child uses their gun.
The law would require gun owners to keep their weapons safely stored, with the owners potentially facing criminal charges if the weapon is used by a child committing a crime.
The news comes after 15-year-old Ethan Crumbley allegedly shot and killed four people at Oxford High School, Michigan, on Tuesday, November 30.
Crumbley is being charged as an adult with murder, terrorism and other crimes in relation to the tragic case. However, he is not the only one facing charges.
In a decision that was announced Friday, December 3, the prosecutor handling the Oxford High School case has decided to file charges against Crumbley’s parents, James and Jennifer.
The prosecutor said:
While the shooter was the one who entered the high school and pulled the trigger, there were other individuals who contributed to the events.
A safe storage law was supposed to be passed in Michigan last spring but was held up due to lack of support.
Despite this, Crumbley’s parents will still face charges.
There are many states, like Michigan, that have no safe-storage law despite evidence to suggest it could prevent similar crimes.
The Washington Post conducted a review of 145 school shootings after the Columbine High School massacre, and the weapon’s source had been identified in 105 of these cases.
The review found that of those 105 cases:
In total, the guns those children used were taken from their own homes or those of relatives or friends 80 percent of the time.
This adds weight to the case for safe-storage legislation acting as a deterrent for school shootings.
The Washington Post went on to find:
That such measures could have a profound impact, since more than half of the country’s school shootings since 1999 could have been prevented if the children who killed their classmates did not have access to firearms.
Michigan may introduce the law in the wake of the Oxford High School shooting, with Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel backing the move. Other states may also follow suit.
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