US school shooter Ethan Crumbley’s mum and her married firefighter-chief lover held sex parties at hotels while she ignored her son’s pleas for mental health treatment, prosecutors suggested in court Friday.
Jennifer Crumbley, 45, and lover Brian Meloche would often find strangers on a swingers app called Adult Friend Finder and arrange “meet-ups” with them at a local hotel after work, prosecutors said in the explosive start to their cross-examination of the mum at her trial.
Jennifer, who is charged with involuntary manslaughter over her son’s shooting rampage, admitted to using the app to “arrange for other people to meet us there” but claimed she was going to hotels after work “on business,” the New York Post reports.
“I only met with Brian during work hours,” the mum said, who worked as the marketing director for a real-estate company at the time, according to ABC News.
Both Jennifer and husband James Crumbley, 47, have been charged with four counts of involuntary manslaughter for their son’s deadly high school rampage.
Both have pleaded not guilty.
Ethan, now 17, was sentenced in December to life in prison without the possibility of parole for killing four students and injuring six others and a teacher at Oxford High School in Michigan on November 30, 2021.
Crumbley’s cross-examination came as prosecutors sought to tear into the mother’s claims that she was a “hyper-vigilant helicopter parent” who was “close” to her son before he shot up the school.
Prosecutors claimed in court that Jennifer was instead “grossly negligent” by buying her son a gun and failing to seek mental health treatment for the darkly disturbed teen.
Not only did Crumbley spend her free time having rendezvous with her firefighter boyfriend, but she would be gone for hours each week, either skiing or riding horses.
She argued that her son was “not into horses” and she would therefore not take him with her as she went horseback riding three times a week, ABC News reported.
Prosecutors claimed in court Friday that Crumbley was so preoccupied with her hobbies that she ignored her son.
They showed text-message exchanges between Crumbley and Ethan in which the word “love” only appeared three times over the course of several years.
Prosecutors also showcased excerpts from Ethan’s journal in which he wrote that “my parents won’t listen to me about help or [a] therapist,” and “I have zero help for my mental problems, and it’s causing me to shoot up the f*****g school.”
Those diary entries seemed to have come as a shock to the mother, who said she “felt like I had an open door. He can come to me about anything,” according to the Today show in the US.
She said she had never read her son’s journals before or monitored his internet activity.
Crumbley also claimed it was her husband who decided to buy their son the 9mm gun he would use in the massacre.
She said James and Ethan bought the firearm together on Black Friday while she was out shopping on her own.
When asked whether she objected to the purchase, Crumbley replied, “No.”
“I was more angry that they cut into our Christmas tree time,” she said.
“I usually cut my Christmas tree down right after I get back from shopping, but I had to wait for them, so I was irritated,” the mum said.
This article originally appeared on the New York Post and was reproduced with permission