OXFORD TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WXYZ) — The mother of an Oxford High School shooting survivor has filed a federal lawsuit against the school for failing to protect her 14-year-old daughter.
The student suffered multiple gunshot-related injuries and has been working through a long road to recovery.
Phoebe Arthur's mother is sending a powerful message after the Oxford High School mass shooting last November. One is demanding accountability and needing to raise awareness about mental health.
“There was gross negligence — our children. Condolences to the other four families that were not as lucky as us. Our daughter did come home,” Sandra Arthur-Cunningham said.
Breaking her silence with 7 Action News, Arthur-Cunningham is opening up about the ordeal her 14-year-old daughter has been living through in the wake of the shooting.
The deadly attack that left four students dead and others injured has not only fueled criminal charges against the alleged shooter Ethan Crumbley and his parents James and Jennifer, but also civil cases against those who allegedly ignored signs of danger the morning of the tragedy.
Arthur-Cunningham told us she’s made the decision to also pursue legal action after her daughter was shot in the neck and ribs, hospitalized after surgery and forced to undergo extensive physical therapy.
“It was a long fight, but she came home. We know how lucky we are. Paramedics to officers, they worked so diligently. I was able to be on the phone with Phoebe the whole time since she was shot. It also wouldn’t be without help of her friend Heidi Allen,” Arthur-Cunningham said.
There’s also the emotional toll she and other survivors, as well as victims’ families, are left with.
“If someone would have taken this kid more seriously, this could have been prevented. They had so many warning signs to prevent what took place,” Arthur-Cunningham said.
Attorney Wolf Mueller with Mueller Law Firm said, “Importance of this lawsuit is to call attention to need for more and better mental health training of school officials. Had they just followed their practices and training, we wouldn’t be here today. They would have called the school police officer in.”
“We need to fix the problem in the future so this doesn’t happen again to other families,” he continued.
So far, the Oxford school district isn’t commenting, based on pending litigation.