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James Crumbley says he hasn't paid attorney since he sold Oxford house in 2022: affidavit

Kara Berg, The Detroit News on

Published in News & Features

DETROIT — James Crumbley has not paid his attorney for nearly two years, since his Oxford home was sold, according to an affidavit he filed with the court.

The father of the Oxford High School shooter, who is set to go on trial starting Tuesday for four counts of involuntary manslaughter, has been in custody in the Oakland County Jail since his arrest Dec. 4, 2021. He has not been able to convince judges in Oakland County to reduce his bond, and he cannot afford his $500,000 bond, Crumbley wrote.

"I have not paid my attorney additional funds since the funds provided after the sale of my home," Crumbley wrote.

The Crumbleys' East Street home in Oxford was sold in March 2022 for $150,000, according to county records.

Crumbley faces four counts of involuntary manslaughter in connection with the November 2021 mass shooting his son committed at Oxford High School that killed four students — Hana St. Juliana, 14; Madisyn Baldwin, 17; Justin Shilling, 17; and Tate Myre, 16.

His wife, Jennifer, has already been convicted of the same manslaughter charges. And his son, Ethan Crumbley, was sentenced to life without parole in December.


Mariell Lehman, James Crumbley's attorney, cannot speak about the case because of a gag order put in place by Oakland County Circuit Court Judge Cheryl Matthews.

Crumbley filed the affidavit in connection with a request for free transcripts of his wife's trial, which concluded in February.

Matthews ruled that Crumbley is indigent and has no assets or way to earn money, as he has been in jail for more than two years. Crumbley said in the affidavit that he has no access to additional assets or money to pay for litigation costs, including the cost of transcripts.

The request may be a moot point, as Crumbley's trial is set to begin Tuesday and the transcripts had not been put into the court record as of Friday.

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