The superintendent of Oxford High School, Tim Throne, published a statement on the school’s website in order to address rumors that have been made public by the prosecution in a school shooting that took place on November 30, 2021.
Some of these rumors include a baby bird’s head that was left in a jar in the school’s bathroom and a severed deer head that was found on the lawn of the school. They also addressed concerns that school officials were fully aware that suspected school shooter – 15-year-old sophomore Ethan Crumbley – was a threat to students from threatening social media posts.
The school has received widespread criticisms and lawsuits after it was made public that Ethan Crumbley had been pulled out of class early that morning to talk about a drawing Ethan drew of a gun, a bullet, and a bleeding figure. His parents, James Crumbley and Jennifer Crumbley, refused to take him home after the meeting and he was sent back to class.
Later that day, Crumbley reportedly pulled a gun out of his backpack and opened fire on his classmates. Students Hana St. Juliana, 14, Tate Myre, 16, Madisyn Baldwin, 17, and Justin Shilling, 17, were killed in the shooting.
Crumbley is now facing 24 charges, including one count of terrorism causing death. It is possible that school officials may also face charges after being accused of not doing enough to protect the student body.
Superintendent Tim Throne Addresses Concerned Parents And Students
Tim Throne began the letter by addressing the “Wildcat Nation.”
“We were excited to see so many OHS students at the middle school the past two weeks,” he continued. “We have heard a lot of positive feedback and have also heard that students need a venue to share their opinions.”
“To that end, Principal Steve Wolf and OHS staff are working to identify the best forum to ensure students have a voice and can share their needs in a safe space amongst trusting adults,” he added.
“Unfortunately, there have been numerous irresponsible and false allegations as well as inaccurate claims regarding Oxford Community Schools,” he went on. “Additionally, we have received several inquiries related to the events leading up to the tragic incident on November 30. We feel it is important to clarify the details we can address at this time.”
Tim Throne Addresses Allegations Leading Up To School Shooting
The first point Throne addressed was the deer head incident that had happened earlier that month.
“The deer head incident that occurred on November 4 was investigated by law enforcement and was in no way related to the perpetrator of the November 30 incident,” he wrote. “Social media posts students shared after this event with OHS were also investigated and shared with law enforcement. They were also in no way related to the perpetrator of the November 30 incident.”
The second point was the bird’s head that was found in a jar in a school bathroom. Prosecutors seemed to suggest that video footage led them to believe that it was left by Ethan, who was said to have kept the bird’s head on his bedroom floor for a time.
“On November 11, the head of a bird was found in a jar in a student restroom at OHS,” he explained. “It was brought to the attention of and investigated by law enforcement. In addition to school personnel reviewing video footage over two days and interviewing several students, law-enforcement investigated the bird head incident before November 30 and determined there was no threat to the high school.”
“They were unable to determine when or how the jar was delivered,” he added. “No threat or other content accompanied the strange act.”
Tim Throne Calls Allegations That Ethan Crumbley Brought Bullets To School ‘Completely False’
Prosecutors had alleged that Ethan Crumbley had brought bullets to class and kept them out in plain sight for anyone to see. The school superintendent vehemently denied those allegations.
“Allegations regarding live ammunition being discovered at school are completely false,” he wrote. “We have no record or report of live ammunition ever being reported at any school and we have strict protocols and procedures in place when it comes to weapons on school grounds.”
“All OK2SAY tips from that time period (11/01/21-11/30/21) were forwarded to law enforcement,” he added. “Each tip was fully investigated by law enforcement. The only actionable information received was on November 17 from an anonymous tip stating that a student, who is no longer a student of Oxford High School and not the perpetrator from November 30, was responsible for the bird head.”
He also denied that the school had any knowledge of threats that Ethan Crumbley made on social media and said that “the high school administration and Pam Fine did not interact with [Ethan Crumbley] on November 30 prior to the incident. The meeting with [Ethan Crumbley] only included the counselor and dean of students.”
‘Our Student And Staff Should Be Proud’
Throne said that “our students and staff should be proud” that the emergency response team responded so quickly to the situation.
“Our high school administration, including Principal Steve Wolf, Kristy Gibson-Marshall, and Kurt Nuss ran toward the incident to effectively save children, administer aid to injured parties, and to locate the perpetrator, putting themselves in harm’s way,” he added. “As an administrative team, we are extremely proud of their brave efforts that day.” He added that the Oakland County Sherrif’s Office “secured the scene” and limited “administrators’ ability to share information.”
“We have always taken threats very seriously and will continue to listen to students and parents who report threats to the district,” he continued. “In reminding everyone to ‘say something if you see something’ we are in no way suggesting that our community has ever hesitated to do so in the past.
Throne Alleges ‘False Allegations And Reckless Statements’ Were Made By The Prosecution
“The school district will respond in detail to the false allegations and reckless statements made by Mr. Fieger,” he continued. The County Prosecutor has asked that the school district not unduly comment upon the details surrounding the case in order to avoid any interference with the criminal proceedings.”
“Their efforts to seek justice for the victims of these criminal acts takes priority at this time,” he added. “Your many questions will be answered in short order as the criminal prosecution moves forward and the school district responds to the inaccurate filing by Mr. Fieger.”
“These false allegations should not diminish the exemplary actions of our school staff on Nov. 30. Principal Wolf, school administrators, teachers, and support staff followed their training and implemented our District’s detailed emergency plans and protocols,” he went on. “More to the point, they put the safety of our students above their own safety when the criminal conduct forced our community to endure this unimaginable tragedy.”
“We look forward to our return to school next week and we look forward to letting the truth and the facts prevail through the course of the criminal investigation and any subsequent legal process,” he concluded. “As a community, we will get through this with love and grace for one another.”