ForumTouchy Subjects ► Michican school shooting - debatable charges
I didn't pay any attention to this school shooting at the time. Another American school shooting, if you've read one you've read them all. But the charges are out, and I find three things debatable about the charges:

1 - The suspect has been charged as an adult, despite being 15. Is this normal? I don't know, but they're reporting it as if it isn't normal. If it's not normal then it seems arbitrary to charge people as adults just because of the type of crime they commit, they're either adults or they're not. Why is he an adult if he kills people but not if he wants to vote, for example.

2 - The suspect has been charged with terrorism. Terrorism in my opinion means violence motivated by a political/religious agenda. There's no evidence of that in this case, the motive is still being determined. The only evidence is sociopathic drawings about killing people and feeling worthless. That's not terrorism. Or has terrorism been redefined to mean anything that causes terror? If so, what's the point of terrorism charges at all?

3 - The suspects parents have been charged with involuntary manslaughter on the grounds that they didn't stop him even though they knew he had drawn pictures about killing people. I'm maybe open to some sort of charge about failure to report or whatever, but charging them with manslaughter seems excessive, like we're trying to blame as many people as we can. His teacher also saw the pictures, so why isn't the teacher being charged.
  
Short answer to all your questions: to satisfy people who see it as a political issue and downplay how there’s murdered kids and one kid troubled enough to make murdered kids.
Normal? Yeah, kind of.
With things like this, it’s for the sake of adding more charges.
Probably because people would rather place the blame on just the parents and absolve the school of any negligence.
  
Read more into the case, the parents did more than just not stop him. Also typically you throw all potentially relevant charges into the mix and then let the jury decide which actually apply or not. That's just how the legal system works.
  
What else more did they do?
  
They gave him the gun and ignored the mandate that he needed to seek counselling w/in 48 hours. The mom also texted him "Don't do it"
  
Nothing I've read says his parents gave him the gun. The father bought the gun, and the son stole it.
  
They bought it for him for Xmas and were keeping in an unlocked drawer.
  
Well that’s just great.
  
From the above article: "Neither federal nor state law requires gun owners to keep their weapons locked away from their children".

Is this correct?
  
Millpond said:
From the above article: "Neither federal nor state law requires gun owners to keep their weapons locked away from their children".

Is this correct?

There's no federal law, and Michigan has no law to this effect. That's why they're not being prosecuted based on the decision to give their child a firearm, but for failing to prevent their child from killing when it's been made clear that they had ample warning and ample reason to believe that this would happen. Even coached the kid not to get caught. They had drawings in-hand of their kid fantasizing about carrying out the exact thing he did. Involuntary manslaughter is often manslaughter brought on by negligence or recklessness. It's plain to see how this charge has the potential to apply. And again, when you think you have a charge you can prove, you press the charge and let the evidence and the jury decide. That is how the legal system operates.
  
And they aren't being charged for not keeping the gun locked, they're being charged for involuntary manslaughter.
  
Also, in response to your first point, an estimated 250,000 youth are tried, sentenced, or incarcerated as adults every year across the United States.
  
And as far as terrorism, read up. Legal definitions of words rarely align perfectly with common usage.

Additional reading specific to this case
  
At least in Michigan, if a minor is being charged with a crime that would be a felony for an adult, it is common practice for the juvenile courts to waive jurisdiction. Considering this is a very serious and premeditated crime involving a firearm, it is entirely expected for him to be tried as an adult here.
  
1. It happens. Particularly with murder.

2. Congratulations on your law degree.

3. Teacher didn't give the kid a gun.
  
If the legal definition of terrorism is "causing terror", then that applies to all public violence, but it's not used for all public violence. The charge is arbitrary and pointless.

I thought supply of the gun wasn't the reason for the charge? From what I've read, this all comes from a social media post where the mother described the gun as his Christmas present at a shooting range. But we don't know to what extent he was given regular access to it, and they did report it missing. If they supplied a gun to an unlicensed person, I'm sure that's its own crime (as it should be).

Also, is it legal for unlicensed people to be at shooting ranges? I've never been to one.
  
Dude, you've been given the info in this thread. You're wrong about the terrorism and about the parents' charge. I invite you to re-read the posts in this thread.

Not all states require licenses to own a gun. Some states only require a permit to purchase them. Michigan's one of those states. That's why, again, that's not what is being brought against the parents. The gun isn't the issue.
  
Two people in this thread said the gun WAS the issue. What have I said about the charge that I'm wrong about?
They gave him the gun
Teacher didn't give the kid a gun.
I've read the two articles you linked:

International and domestic terrorism are defined as violent or dangerous acts that endanger human life, and violate state or federal law. Further, such acts are intended to coerce or intimidate civilians, or are intended to influence government policy or government conduct through mass destruction, kidnapping or assassination.

I can see that a school shooting is intimidating civilians, though whether that's a primary intention or just a by-product of killing them, I'm not sure.

“What about all the children who ran, screaming, hiding under desks? What about all the children at home right now, who can’t eat and can’t sleep and can’t imagine a world where they could ever step foot back in that school? Those are victims, too, and so are their families and so is the community. The charge of terrorism reflects that.”

So the legal definition of terrorism is "causing terror" (with violence), what am I wrong about?
Even coached the kid not to get caught.
They didn't coach the kid not to get caught shooting people. The kid got caught by his teacher browsing an online ammunition retailer on his phone, and they said don't get caught doing that.
  
Maybe next time instead of putting forth your post as a question, have it be a statement and include something like "And no matter how you refute my points, my mind's already made up".
  
It's what the kids these days call JAQing off cause they're "Just Asking Questions!" and to be fair, some of the questions are legitimate. But by forcing people to reanswer things constantly, you get the pleasure of being a gigantic drain on everyone around you.
  
I was also doubtful about the terrorism charge, so I read up on the state statute.

I don't know that the charge will stick, but I don't think it's an inappropriate charge, given the facts.
  
Questions can't be refuted, questions can be answered. Opinions about laws are not refuted by the existence of the law. If someone thinks marijuana should be legal, they have not been refuted by being told it's illegal. What is the point of a discussion if we just discuss what laws are rather than what laws should be?

I asked if it was normal for a 15 year-old to be charged as an adult. The news articles all report him being charged as an adult, as if this is noteworthy. If this is normal then why mention it. They're mentioning it because there's something controversial about it, at least to a layperson. No one's given an opinion on it, they've all just cited the status quo. I accept that, at least according to people here, it's normal in the US.

The layman understanding of terrorism is a political or religious ideology. Basically a large hate crime. This is how it's usually used. Even the articles linked admit it's unusual and inconsistent:

“It’s not a usual, a typical charge,” Oakland County Prosecutor Karen McDonald
Michigan, unlike federal law and some states with their own anti-terrorism laws, has a broader definition beyond pressuring or retaliating against only the government with violence. In Florida, for instance — where the 2018 high school massacre in Parkland occurred — the shooter was not charged with terrorism. Nor was the shooter in a 2017 rampage at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, which was a federal case.

Part of the issue seems to be the different US states all having their own laws, and how some attacks are defined as federal and some defined as state. So maybe it's perfectly consistent in Michigan (are there similar cases in Michigan to compare it to?), but certainly not in the US, or the world. I accept that Michigan has its own laws that define terrorism more broadly than its generally understood elsewhere.

People in this thread are giving mixed messages about why the parents were charged, some say it's because they gave him the gun, others say it's because they didn't do enough after the school brought his violent drawings to their attention.
  
Why do you expect a bunch of random forum users to all tell you exactly the same thing?
  
I don't, but Different55 said:
Dude, you've been given the info in this thread. You're wrong about the terrorism and about the parents' charge. I invite you to re-read the posts in this thread.
  
Forum > Touchy Subjects > Michican school shooting - debatable charges