By FOX 2 Staff
On Day 3 of the trial, the defense cross-examined a mental health expert to decide whether or not the Oxford High School Shooter deserves life without parole.
The meeting was adjourned by Judge Kwame rowe, who intends to reconvene it on August 18. The next day, a rebuttal will be presented.
Miller Hearing was the name of this hearing. It is named after the U.S. Supreme Court decision Miller v. Alabama from 2012.
This ruling prohibits the imposition of a mandatory sentence for life without parole on children. The court still allows for such sentences to be imposed, but they must first undergo a hearing to decide if the sentence is appropriate. The shooter who was only 15 years old at the time the crime occurred cannot automatically be sentenced to life in prison without parole.
After the shooting on Nov. 30 2021, the gunman pleaded guilty for four counts of murder, one count of terrorism, seven counts of assault with the intent to kill, and twelve of possessing a weapon. He cannot be sentencing before the judge has considered his cages.
Dr. Colin King, who evaluated the shooter in several sessions over a period of time, testified on his findings.
King emphasized the childhood of the gunman.
He said, “I noticed problems at age 10, and as young as 6.”
King found out from a neighbour that a shooter who was left all alone at the age of six had asked for assistance when he felt scared. In 2010, King texted his mom to ask when she was returning home. The texts King sent were not answered.
While his parents were on vacation, the shooter watched violent videos and played violent games online. The shooter then started fantasizing that he was in the scenes.
The family was in constant turmoil while the parents of the shooter were at home. They discussed divorce, and who he’d choose as his parent, if they separated.
King said that the shooter had high levels of depression, anxiety and a test classified him with the highest anxiety level. The shooter, according to King, has obsessional thoughts that he can’t shut off. These findings are consistent with King’s journal entries.
The search history and journal of the Oxford High School Shooter reveal meticulous planning
King claims that the school at the time did not have adequate resources to support mental health for either the student who shot the gun or any other students. At any one time, the school employed a social worker to help between 900 and 1,000 students. It is suggested that one social worker should be assigned to every 250 students.
King, in addition to his expertise on mental health and brain injuries is also a specialist on brain trauma. Attorneys for the shooter argued that their client had suffered brain trauma.
Loftin mentioned the shooting in 2020. He said that the shooter had collapsed at his workplace and hit his head. The shooter also collapsed while picking up fruit according to King, although there is no proof that he was treated.
King compared the softness of a brain with that of an egg by comparing it raw or soft.
The expert also stated that it will be years before the brain of the defendant is fully developed. He believes the defendant could still be rehabiliated.
During King’s cross-examination, the prosecution asked King to explain the difference between the two reports on the shooter. King was asked about the differences between two reports on the shooter during his cross-examination by the prosecution.
The Adverse Childhood Experiences Questionnaire, a 10-question questionnaire that uses the experiences of the child to predict the future health trajectory and well-being for a child, also included questions about King’s determination that the shooter had mental illness.
King claimed that he had used 22 hours worth of interviews, as well as other evidence in order to reach his conclusion. However, he did not administer the questionnaire to the gunman.
The prosecution asked King if he thought the shooter criminally accountable for the incident of 2021, given that he had admitted to his crimes and dropped his insanity defence. According to my knowledge, I do not believe that King had been found criminally crazy.
King testified that the defendant expressed sadness, nightmares and depression during their interviews. King stated that the shooter was “coming to terms” with his actions. He said that the defendant suffered from post-traumatic disorder.
The defendant also asked God, “Why did this happen?”
The prosecution pointed out that in King’s report only a couple of lines are devoted to defendant’s diary, even though they show text messages which, according to them, reveal the motives behind the shooting.
In his messages, the defendant explains why he does what he does. “He wanted to become famous,” stated Prosecutor David Williams.
Last Thursday was the first hearing day. It included graphic information and testimony, including recordings of the killer hours before the attack predicting that he’d be the next shooter.
Amy Hopp moved on Friday to remove the testimony of Oxford high school teacher Molly Darnell who was killed in 2021.
Hopp claimed that Darnell’s testimony was not appropriate for the Miller Hearing, but was suitable for sentencing because she spoke about how she communicated and felt with her own family. We are not in this room for a sentence.
Hopp said that it was not appropriate.
Karen McDonald believes that the testimony is accurate and shows the intent of the shooter to cause pain. She also feels it is unfair to not allow those who were involved to give testimony.
McDonald stated that McDonald’s statement was true. The defendant’s actions, what he said he would do, and the way he actually did it were all relevant in this case. We are all here due to the defendant’s action, what he stated he intended and how he carried it out. He shot students in the face. “He wrote how he planned to execute it.”
McDonald stated that if the attorneys for the defendants badger witnesses, she will not bring two minor students on the stand.
They don’t even know the background of the defendant. She explained that they didn’t know the Miller factors.
Kwame Rowe has said that he will be paying attention to the Miller factor and take it into consideration.
Rowe, despite Darnell’s demand to strike Darnell’s testimony from the record, said that both defense and prosecution must treat every witness with respect.
Rowe stated that neither side should harass witnesses. Let’s respect each other. “Let’s finish this hearing today.”
The defense had to conduct a cross-examination of Det. Edward Wagrowski’s Thursday testimony.
Paulette Loftin, at 8:48 pm on November 29, asked about the gunman’s Google history. This included the question’should I do anything that would imprison me?’ He had searched for information on mental illnesses such as anxiety, depression and insanity a week earlier. On the 21st November, he had looked for information about Army issues and attendance at school. He also asked ‘am i a sociopath?’, what is a psychopathic’ and how do you know when you’ve gone crazy’.
She also discussed with her mother the exchanges of text messages between the shooter and his parents in the weeks leading up to this shooting. This included when the gunman was discovered searching for ammo at the school.
Loftin told Wagrowski she has no more questions about the texts or searches that were sent to her by the shooter.
Mark Keates said that Loftin didn’t go over the other wishes of the shooter.
The night before the Oxford High School Shooting, a shooter stated that he was shooting ‘for humanity’
The Oxford Shooting witnesses testify
Minors who are not allowed to be photographed or recorded cannot appear before the prosecutor.
Heidi Allen, a survivor of the attack, testified to having attended Oxford Schools since she was in kindergarten. She had been in Oxford until 2021 and in her 10th grade when it happened.
She stated in her testimony that the gunman was walking out of the next-door boys’ restroom when she was heading for the bathroom.
Since middle school, we had been going to school. Allen said, “He was always a fellow student but we only talked to each other once or twice.” He was quiet. “He didn’t respond when people talked to him.”
Allen claims that the gunman opened fire, but didn’t shoot Allen. The shooter shot multiple people in the school and then turned away.
She had learned how to lock the classroom door with a nightlock during a drill she attended earlier this year.
She said she was there for a specific reason. Both girls called home to tell their parents what happened.
She took off her sweatshirt in order to stop the bleeding and keep Arthur talking.
As she kept zoning off, Allen kept talking to her.
When she heard the police walking down the hall, she opened the door to call for assistance.
She saw that two of the victims had blood and wounds. They were Hana St. Julina and Madisyn Bliss.
Allen was removed from the stand as a witness because she wasn’t cross-examined by the defence.
Keegan Gregory (16 years old) was a ninth grader in November 2021. After a short recess, he came to the hallway after eating his lunch.
Gregory and Justin Shilling were in the bathroom when he heard shots. Shilling, he said, encouraged Gregory to enter the bathroom with him. Shilling told him to sit on the toilet so that the shooter could not see him. Shilling placed himself behind a wall behind the door of the bathroom to prevent the shooter from seeing him.
Karen McDonald displayed the group text he sent to his family, in which he explained what had happened and expressed how terrified he felt. His father told him to remain calm and stay on the ground.
Gregory sent a text to his father at 12:55 pm, telling him that the gunman was inside the building.
Gregory sent a text saying he had seen us after the gunman kicked the door of the bathroom.
He said, “He looked at us.” I don’t recall anyone having said anything in that particular moment.
Shilling said that they’d run if they heard shots further away. The shooter never left the bathroom. The shooter remained inside, while two of the boys were hiding.
Justin was to go out when Justin returned. He said to me, “Stay put.”
Gregory claims that the gunman never appeared aggressive or panicky.
He said, “He (seemed) to be a bit blank and cold.”
Gregory heard the gunshot after Shilling had been told by the shooter to leave the toilet stall. Gregory was able to see Shilling with blood all over his body. When the shooter came back and asked him to leave, Gregory’s body signaled that it was time to go.
Gregory ran after him as soon as Gregory signaled with his gun. When I saw the body of my friend, I knew I would die.
Gregory saw Tate Myre’s body when he exited his bathroom.
To lose him, the man ran as fast as possible. He ended up in a office, and an officer escorted him out.
The shootings at Oxford High School were foretold by a text message
Gregory claimed he’d be dead without Shilling.
Gregory, like the other students in his class, was dismissed.
After a 10-minute break, McDonald called Christy Gibson Marshall, assistant principal of Oxford High School.
She was eating lunch in the Commons when the children began to run through the school on November 30, 2021 and the announcement about the ALICE Protocol was made.
Gibson-Marshall, as she was walking down the hall, noticed the gunman and sent a radio message that she had “eyes on him” after checking several doors and smelling the powder. When she first saw him she said that he had a weapon and ran to assist a student on the ground. Tate Myre, the student who was on the floor at that time, was identified later.
Myre was given CPR while she called for assistance.
Gibson-Marshall’s testimony was never questioned by defense counsel, so she was fired.
The court was adjourned after lunch until 1:10 p.m. when Dr. Kenneth Romanowski, an expert witness, was called by the defense.
Dr. Romanowski is a social worker licensed in the state of California. She works with prisoners to learn about their past, involvement in programs for court, and accomplishments.
Due to the fact that this suspect is still awaiting sentencing, Dr. Romanowski said the case was unique. He provided information on the shooting suspect’s stay in the Oakland County Jail. This included the medication prescribed to him, the counseling he received while incarcerated, as well as the suicide watch that he had been placed on.
Both the suspect and Dr. Romanowski were in good standing before 2023. Dr. Romanowski studied for his GED using a tablet while in jail.
He said he could take (tests), however, they had to be proctored and jail staff couldn’t do that.
He also discussed with the prisoner the possibility of rehabilitating and gaining an education as well as the possible process for a parole hearing.
He said that they look first at whether the inmate would be a threat to society if he were released. They’ll look at his participation in prison programs and his crimes. “All these factors will be taken into consideration.”
If he does not cooperate while in prison, it is less likely that he’ll be released. Inmates who commit major infractions while they are incarcerated can also have time added to their sentence.
The psychiatrist of the shooter, Dr. Fariha Qadir testified regarding the mental health of the shooter.
Qadir began seeing the gunman a few weeks after the shooting. She diagnosed him as having severe major depression disorder, adjustment disorder with anxiety and severe depressive disorder.
Qadir stated that the gunman is taking sleep medicine, antidepressants and mood stabilizers for angry episodes.
Rowe, during the Miller hearing will take into account factors like the age of the shooter, his life situation, and the crime. Rowe will make his decision and then sentence the shooter.
Despite a ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court in 2012 that banned such punishments, children can be given life sentences. At a hearing, juveniles with severe sentences may argue that they deserve to be released into the community.
Rowe has refused to take away the option of life imprisonment from the sentence for the gunman.
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