Santa Fe Shooting Victim’s Mom, Rosie Yanas Stone, Applauds James Crumbley Verdict

Estimated read time 4 min read

The conviction of Oxford High School mass shooter Ethan Crumbley’s father on Thursday came as a relief to the mother of a Texas school shooting victim who wants the parents of her son’s killer to also pay a legal price.

“It’s about time. I was really surprised and excited to see parents being held accountable here,” Rosie Yanas Stone, whose 17-year-old son was killed at Santa Fe High School in 2018, told The Daily Beast. “The thoughts and prayers are not enough after a mass shooting. These trials were a national eye-opener. And that makes me hopeful.”

James Crumbley, 47, was convicted of involuntary manslaughter in connection with Ethan’s 2021 massacre in Michigan—one month after a jury found his wife guilty of similar charges. Prosecutors allege that the Crumbleys neglected their son’s deteriorating mental health and did not properly secure the weapon used in the rampage.

Stone said she watched Jennifer Crumbley’s trial closely as prosecutors laid out their case that Ethan’s parents recklessly ignored his violent journal entries, text messages, and homework doodles that highlighted his deteriorating mental health. She said she could not bring herself to follow James’ trial.

“It was gut-wrenching to watch because, in every way, this kid was failed by his parents,” Stone said.

James Crumbley

James Crumbley, the father of Oxford High School school shooter Ethan Crumbley, was convicted of involuntary manslaughter.

Bill Pugliano/Getty

The convictions mark the most dramatic example of prosecutors seeking to hold parents responsible for violent crimes committed by their children. Legal experts told The Daily Beast that while the Crumbleys’ verdicts are unusual, they could embolden prosecutors in similar cases.

“Prosecutors recognize that community members—who become members of the jury—find these tragic school shootings especially repugnant,” Daniel Fryer, a University of Michigan law school assistant professor and former Philadelphia assistant district attorney, told The Daily Beast. “So, it may not be unreasonable to worry that other prosecutors across the nation will follow suit.”

In the Santa Fe shooting, prosecutors did not bring charges against suspect Dimitrios Pagourtzis’ parents. He is charged with using two of his father’s firearms to murder nine and injure 13. Stone’s son Chris was killed while acting as a human barricade to keep the gunman out of a storage closet where others were hiding, saving at least seven lives.

Pagourtzis, who was 17 at the time, has been deemed incompetent to stand trial. In her quest to hold someone accountable, Stone has sued the parents.

“I want it to be known that if you are going to condone letting your child be around a firearm, you have to parent,” Stone said. “If you are not going to be a parent, and check in with your child and make sure they are safe, then you have to be held accountable.”

Chris Stone

Chris Stone was killed acting as a human shield to protect classmates.

Courtesy Rosie Yanas Stone

Stone noted that in both the Oxford and Santa Fe shootings, the suspects had access to firearms despite warning signs. Her 2018 lawsuit alleges Pagourtzis’ parents ignored red flags such as their son’s fascination with the 1999 Columbine High School shooting, including his donning of a full-length black trench coat with a medallion “identical” to the one a Columbine shooter wore. The teen also followed gun-related accounts online and posted photos of neo-Nazi iconography and a semi-automatic pistol.

“Many of the details of [Pagourtzis’] attack on his classmates and teachers indicate that he took inspiration from the Columbine shooter—down to the details such as how he constructed explosive devices that he planted around the school,” the lawsuit says.

After the shooting, the suspect’s father, Antonios Pagourtzis, told a Greek radio station that he had been worried about his son for weeks “as if I knew something would happen.” The lawsuit states that while Pagourtzis’ parents saw the warning signs, they did not address them. (A lawyer for Pagourtzis and Kosmetatos did not respond to a request for comment.)

The civil case against the Pagourtzises is set for May 28.

“If we win, it shows that we are not going to allow this to happen. If you are not going to be a parent, we are going to hold you accountable. All I want is accountability,” Stone said. “The Crumbley case shows that accountability now can mean criminal charges, which will make parents pay attention.”

“I just wish I could do that in my case, but at least maybe this will make sure there will be fewer parents of mass shooting victims like me.”