Ethan Crumbley trial: What's next for alleged Oxford High School shooter?

Accused Oxford High School shooter Ethan Crumbley will remain in the Oakland County Jail as he awaits trail for the murders of four high school students and the shooting of 7 others, a judge has ruled. But what's next? 

The 15-year-old has already waived his preliminary exam, which is typically when much of the evidence for trial is revealed, and instead is heading straight to pre-trail hearings and, eventually, a trial. But the path there won't be that quick and smooth.

Under state law, the detainment of a minor in an adult facility must be reviewed by a judge every 30 days. The judge must decide if it is still appropriate for the minor to remain in adult custody.

Ethan's first hearing took place in January, was very brief, and involved only attorneys. His second one, on Feb. 22, was an explosive look at what life has been like for accused shooter.

During the hearing, we learned details about his education access while in jail and more including his commissary funds.

However, according to attorney and FOX 2 legal analyst Charlie Langton, don't expect every hearing each month to be of this level. His reasoning is that Crumbley's attorneys wouldn't argue the same issues.

"If there are no changes, I would think Crumbley attorneys would not make the same arguments," Langton said. 

MORE: 'Maybe it’s just my paranoia': Phone records show Jennifer Crumbley ignored texts from Ethan about demons

During the February hearing, the manger of Children's Village discussed issues with staffing at the facility and fears among residents about being around Crumbley. 

Langton said those issues won't change.

MORE: Ethan Crumbley's journal entries laid out teen's shooting plan, path toward his 'dark side'

Ethan Crumbley's next court date

The next time Crumbley is due in court is Thursday, March 24. This in accordance with the law that requires minors held in adult facilities be evaluated each month. Langton said to expect the hearing to be brief. 

RELATED: James and Jennifer Crumbley to stand trial, judge rules

After that, a pre-trial hearing and a trial date must be set. 

A pre-trial hearing is procedural and is more of a check-in to see how both sides are progressing in terms of trail.

Ethan Crumbley's mental health

In late January, it was revealed in court that Crumbley's defense planned to argue an insanity defense. That set into motion a physician's evaluation - which has not yet happened and there is no date set at this time.

Langton said, based on the hearing last week and the judge's ruling, don't expect the insanity defense to play out.

RELATED: Ethan Crumbley told friend prior to Oxford shooting: Parents 'make me feel like I’m the problem'

"He was getting mail, playing games, adjusting to jail life," Langton said. "Indications are that he is not insane."

Now, a judge can contradict all of that but judge Kwame Rowe is not likely to give that great weight.

When will Ethan Crumbley's trial start?

As of March 3, 2022, a trial date has not been set but Langton says we should expect the trial to happen by the end of 2022.

Crumbley has the right to a speedy trial, which means within 6 months, but that can and will likely be waived as evidence and witnesses are reviewed.

Langton explained that criminal cases get priority over civil cases in terms of scheduling. On top of that, suspects in custody get priority over those not detained, meaning Crumbley's case will be a number one priority in terms of scheduling.

Read: Parents ignored signs of violence for months before shooting, prosecutor says

"The judge is likely to clear the docket to make way for the case," Langton said.

How does James and Jennifer Crumbley's trial factor in?

Ethan's parents, James and Jennifer Crumbley, are both charged with four cases of involuntary manslaughter for the shooting. Their case could hinge on Ethan's. If the younger Crumbley is guilty, are they also responsible?

Langton called the case against James and Jennifer novel as they're both being charged for a crime their child allegedly committed. Even if the Crumbley parents were not great parents as the Oakland County prosecutor argued in court, are the liable for the murder of four teenagers?

"The issue for the jury ultimately will be, did the parents' bad actions, negligence - gross negligence cause the murder?" Langton said.

As for when the case will start relative to his parents, Langton said whichever case goes first (Ethan's or James and Jennifer's) could have implications on the other case.