Detroit — Survivors of the mass shooting at Oxford High School are filing two $100 million lawsuits against the school district and employees, lawyer Geoffrey Fieger said Thursday.
The announcement comes more than one week after prosecutors say Ethan Crumbley, the 15-year-old alleged shooter, killed four students while wounding six other students and a teacher.
Fieger filed one federal lawsuit on behalf of Oxford students and siblings Riley Franz, 17, a senior, and Bella Franz, 14, a freshman. Riley was shot in the neck while next to Bella during the attack.
The lawsuit accuses school officials of failing to stop an attack that inflicted physical and psychological injuries on students. Defendants listed in the federal lawsuit filed early Thursday include Superintendent Timothy Throne, High School Principal Steven Wolf, Dean Ryan Moore and unidentified counselors, teachers and staff members.
The horror of November 30, 2021 was entirely preventable,” Fieger said in a statement Thursday.
Fieger will discuss the lawsuits during an 11 a.m. Thursday news conference at his Southfield law office.
The federal lawsuit Thursday chronicles several ignored warning signs, including threats posted on social media, and faults Wolf for downplaying dangers to students in the days leading up to the shooting.
Multiple parents alerted Wolf to the online threats on Nov. 16, prompting the principal to send an email to parents later that day, according to the lawsuit.
“I know I’m being redundant here, but there is absolutely no threat at the HS…large assumptions were made from a few social media posts, then the assumptions evolved into exaggerated rumors,” Wolf wrote.
The day of the shooting, the principal and superintendent reviewed Crumbley’s social media posts, according to the lawsuit. That included threats to kill people and a sinister quote posted on Twitter the night before the shooting: “Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds. See you tomorrow Oxford.”
“Despite the posts and knowledge of threats of violence, defendant Throne sent correspondence and emails to parents at Oxford High School reassuring them that their children were safe at Oxford High School,” the lawsuit reads. “By virtue of defendant Throne’s actions, he substantially increased the harm to plaintiff’s Minors.”