Oxford school shooting: Cops say Ethan Crumbley didn't knock on door to lure students out

Oxford freshman Mark Kluska's viral video suggested that Ethan Crumbley knocked on their locked classroom door, pretending to be a sheriff's deputy

                            Oxford school shooting: Cops say Ethan Crumbley didn't knock on door to lure students out
Sheriff says Oxford High School shooting suspect Ethan Crumbley, 15, never knocked on classroom door during rampage (Twitter, Oakland County Sheriff's Office)

Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard cleared up the confusion about a viral video that appeared to suggest that 15-year-old Oxford High School shooting suspect, Ethan Crumbley, knocked on the door of a barricaded classroom, while pretending to be a sheriff's deputy, in order to make the students come out. 

Ethan Crumbley was arrested at the suburban Detroit school on Tuesday, November 30, and has been charged as an adult with 24 criminal counts, including four charges of murder and terrorism. During a press conference on Wednesday, Bouchard refuted the "false information," which according to him social media have been "ginning up." He addressed the depiction of a cellphone recording made by Oxford freshman Mark Kluska, which showed students huddling inside a classroom when someone knocked on the door during the shooting which left four students and seven others wounded. 


Ethan Crumbley’s history of trouble: Teen called in twice in two days over behavior

Ethan Crumbley: Suspect recorded videos about killing students night before attack

"A video was disseminated rather widely that showed the students in the classroom and depicted someone knocking on the door, and pretty much the allegation was that was the suspect," Bouchard told reporters. "We've now been able to determine that was not the suspect. More than likely it was one of our plainclothes detectives, and he may have been talking... in a conversational manner to try to bring them down from the crisis, to say, 'Come on, bro, let's get out of the classroom, let's get you outside.' The suspect, we have now confirmed by analyzing all of the video from the time [the shooting] began to the time we took him into custody, never knocked on a door."

‘Bro’ red flag



Kluska, who had shared the video with his father, before posting it online, had told CNN he was in his sign-language class when an active shooter lockdown was announced. It prompted his teacher, Moises Cortez, to shut the classroom door and secure it with a metal doorstop so that no one could kick it in from the outside. "I started realizing it was real when I began to hear yelling," the freshman told the network. 

The students were told by the teacher, who switched off the lights to huddle in a corner "because this might not be a drill and he wants to be safe." Kluska's video shows someone who was previously thought to be the shooter raps on the door. The 52-second video showed horrified students sitting near each other after closing the doors as an unidentified voice says from the other side, “Sheriff's office. It’s safe to come out.” But a student replied, “We're not willing to take that risk right now.” To which the unknown person said, “I can't hear you.”


Again when the student insisted that “we’re not taking that risk right now,” the person added: “Okay come to the door... bro,” which made the students hiding inside the classroom more suspicious about the person’s intentions. The video showed students talking to each other and showing their suspicion that the unknown person said “bro,” hinting at the fact that it’s very unlikely for a sheriff to talk like that. One student said: “He said ‘bro’... red flag.”

Moments later, someone whispered “window” and the students began evacuating the classroom by climbing out. They were seen running across a walkway towards another part of the building, where a sheriff opened the door for them and asked them to calm down. Kluska said they ran across the snow-covered courtyard to another part of the building, where a cop led them to safety. 

'Why did the cop say bro?'

Social media users who had previously seen the video, were confused by the sheriff's clarification. "How is that possible?" one of them asked, while another enquired, "Why did the cop say bro." A third noted, "That's the guy who said 'look at my badge bro'? Something doesn't smell right." Another quipped, "My son is a high schooler in Michigan. We were talking about this today & he said they were taught in active shooter drills to NOT open the door. A legit officer would be accompanied by someone w/ keys, would have keys, or the teacher would be notified that the lockdown had ended." The next remarked, "Slide your badge under the door then bro." A commenter tweeted, "Well he didn’t know the password though did he?" One more commented, "'He said bro, that's a red flag' These kids aren't dumb."







If you have a news scoop or an interesting story for us, please reach out at (323) 421-7514