Jennifer Crumbley's Lawyer Has Made a Number of Unorthodox Choices — What Is Her Deal?

Jennifer Tisdale - Author

Jan. 30 2024, Published 3:05 p.m. ET

The much-anticipated trial of Jennifer Crumbley started in January 2024, although it's difficult to keep the focus on the defendant. Jennifer and her husband James have been charged with four counts of involuntary manslaughter in connection to the deaths of four Oxford High School students. Their son, Ethan Crumbley, walked into the school on Nov. 30, 2021, and shot 12 people including 11 students and one teacher. He injured eight people and killed four.

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Jennifer and James stand accused of enabling this tragedy by giving Crumbley the gun he used and ignoring the red flags that led to this tragedy. Unfortunately, the attention of the press has shifted from Jennifer and onto her lawyer Shannon Smith who has displayed a string of bizarre behaviors. What is going on with Jennifer Crumbley's lawyer? Here's what we know.

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Jennifer Crumbley's lawyer is acting as it it's her first trial ever.

Smith's antics have grown so wild that TikTok has picked up on them. Shannon Schott, a criminal defense and personal injury attorney in Jacksonville, Fla., broke down what was going on. In her extremely helpful video, Schott said she is following Jennifer's trial. On Jan. 26, 2024, Smith and the prosecution had a communication kerfuffle that was exacerbated by Smith seemingly playing dumb regarding exhibit 423 and whether or not it was exchanged and redacted.

According to WDIV Local 4, the exhibit is the "full list of Facebook messages exchanged between Jennifer Crumbley and her husband in 2021." Despite both sides agreeing to submit this as evidence, Smith claimed she was never given the exhibit so that she could redact things such as the "parents’ alcohol use and possible infidelity and the cleanliness of their house." This resulted in a shouting match between Smith and Oakland County Prosecutor Marc Keast.

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The prosecution then asked that the court address some of the jokes made by Smith over the course of the trial. At one point Smith was heard saying "I'm going to kill myself," and something about needing to go home and "drink five bottles of wine." Oakland County Prosecutor Karen McDonald reminded Smith that there are "parents who had their children murdered in this courtroom." The wine comment was in response to something Judge Cheryl Matthews said about going home and having a glass of wine.

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In her opening statements from this same day, Smith felt compelled to share with the jury that she was "blasting Taylor Swift," en route to the courthouse that morning. While listening to the famous pop star, Smith claimed that a line from "Bad Blood" resonated with her. "Band-Aids don't stop bullet holes," she said though the actual lyric is "Band-Aids don't fix bullet holes," per CBS News. Smith was attempting to suggest that convicting Jennifer won't help with the pain caused by the deaths of four children.

Shannon Smith also defended Larry Nassar, who was convicted of the sexual assault of minors.

"I have a very hard time believing that my client could have even possibly assaulted that many people day in and day out in front of their parents, and that every single one of those things was a crime," said Smith about Larry Nassar during an interview with WWJ Newsradio 950 (via CBS News Detroit). As a reminder, Nassar was an osteopathic sports physician at Michigan State University and USA Gymnastics. He was convicted of seven counts of felony criminal sexual conduct in the first degree.

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Nassar pleaded guilty to "assaulting girls and women under the guise of medical treatment — penetrating them with his ungloved hands when he was supposed to be treating them for injuries," but you wouldn't know that if you were Smith. "I think Larry Nassar comes off as a really great person. There is no doubt he did a lot of good for a lot of his patients," she said to the outlet. Smith then added, "There was also a lot of child pornography that could not be refuted."

As Jennifer's trial continues, it remains to be seen exactly what Smith will say next. Hopefully she remembers that there are grieving families in the courtroom who lost innocent teenagers that tragic day in November 2021.

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