School Shooting in Oxford is Changing History

Oxford High School lost four students to a tragic shooting by a fifteen-year-old student.

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Harper Wagner

Lafayette High School hallways are representing how the Oxford High School hallways are isolated in the event of the shooting. The ominous fluorescent lighting and empty hallways are intimidating as the shooter walks through them banging on doors and aiming for them.

Doors at Lafayette have the windows covered with paper. This safety technique is so that, in the case of a threat, no one would be able to see into the classroom.
An intruder will not see in the classroom because of the safety precautions taken to ensure there is paper on every door of every classroom.

Classroom doors slammed shut.

Desks being shoved against doors.

Feet shuffling across classrooms.

The flurry of people through the hallways of Oxford High School was put to a halt on Tuesday, November 30, 2021, when a school shooter began firing.

CNN‘s article reported that four students were killed in this attack: Madison Baldwin, Tate Myre, Hana St. Juliana, and Justin Shiling. Four innocent lives were lost because of a student who had access to firearms and parents who assisted in the premeditated attack.

The bell had just rung to switch blocks and as students were walking into their next class, shots were heard puncturing the ears of all students in the hallways. According to CNN, Oxford High student Ander Cumbey stated, “My teacher, he walked into the classroom; he locked the door, and he told us to call 911. And then we heard the rest of the gunshots go off, and more screams.” The authorities, according to CNN,¬†stated that at least 30 shots were fired from the fifteen-year-old student, and those shots killed four students, wounded six others, and wounded one teacher. This is the worst school shooting on a K-12 campus in the United States since May of 2018.

Students are startled from an intruder in their building and gunshots. Luckily, students and teachers knew to lock everything, go in the corner, and build a barricade.

The time in which the shots were fired may have been brief, however the planning that went into this attack was far from brief. According to CNN, prosecutor Marc Keast said, “A preliminary review of the defendant’s social media accounts, his cellphone, as well as other documented evidence recovered on scene showed that this defendant planned this shooting, he deliberately brought the handgun that day with the intent to murder as many students as he could.”

The accused student is facing first-degree murder charges, terrorism, and more. However, his lawyer is proceeding to enter a not-guilty plea and claiming that his client will not speak. The student’s parents were charged with involuntary manslaughter because of their connection to the incident and they are currently being held on a bond at half a million each.

Looking in hindsight, it is clear that the shooting was premeditated. James Crumbley, the father of the accused shooter, purchased the gun supposedly used in the attack the previous weekend. The alleged shooter posted a photo with the gun on his social media and his mother did, too. Over that weekend, his mother took him to a shooting range.

Officer McLaughlin is Lafayette’s school resource officer and works to provide safety to all students and staff. Schools need more police officers and safety measures taken to ensure security on campus.

The red flags prior to the shooting begin in class after Thanksgiving Break. CNN reports that a¬†teacher spotted Ethan Crubley, the alleged shooter, searching up ammunition on the internet. This caused the teacher to notify school officials and they were put in contact with the parents, who did not respond. Later in the day, CNN reported that his mother sent him a text saying, “LOL I’m not mad at you. You have to learn not to get caught.” Additionally, there were two videos found on Crumbley’s phone where he discussed shooting and killing his fellow students at the high school. Evidence was also found by investigators, according to CNN, in his backpack where a journal with his passions about attacking students at the school were written.

The next day, a teacher found a drawing on Crumbley’s desk which basically illustrated a shooting. The picture showed a semiautomatic handgun with bullets drawn and he had written the words, “blood everywhere,” “my life is useless,” and “the world is dead,” according to CNN. The drawing also depicted a person who had been shot twice and a laughing emoji was located below that sketch. This picture led to a meeting between school officials, the accused shooter, and his parents. The parents were told to provide counseling to their son within 48 hours, and during the meeting, the alleged shooter had the gun in his backpack the entire time. Taking their son out of school was out of the question for them and they resisted the idea. Crumbley had no other disciplinary issues, so he went back to class after careful consideration from the staff.

Procedures at Lafayette High School are taken to ensure safety of students and faculty. Monthly, students participate in lockdown drills to practice for the event of a threat entering the school.

As reported by CNN, video evidence of the entire event was documented. At 12:51pm, Crumbley was seen with a backpack and right after that, he left the bathroom with no backpack and a gun in his hand. He walked through the hallways and aimed and shot at his fellow students. Students did begin to run away; however, he still managed to shoot inside classrooms of people who had not gone into lockdown yet. This horrible shooting went on for another four or five minutes before he went to another bathroom and surrendered when the deputies arrived. Over 100 calls were made to 911 and deputies rushed to the school at 12:52pm to help the scene.

Around 1:15pm, the news emerged about the shooting at Oxford High School. At 1:22pm, a text from Jennifer Crumbley came on his phone writing, “Ethan don’t do it.” At 1:37pm, a call from James Crumbley was made to 911 to report a missing gun from the household and to explain that he thought his son might be the shooter.

The shooting at Oxford High School will go down in history as one of the deadliest K-12 shootings in the history of the United States of America. The teachers had locked up and barricaded their classrooms in record time and the shooter was unable to reach any classroom after the first he attempted. The importance of practicing lockdown drills is for events like these. This tragedy will go down in history, and peace is wished for all the families who lost loved ones to this horrific shooting.