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Police to question artist linked to studio where parents of Michigan school shooting suspect were found

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Thousands of people from the community of Oxford, Michigan gathered on Friday for a vigil in memory of students killed after a deadly high school shooting in Oxford, Mich., North of Detroit, United States , December 3, 2021. REUTERS / Seth Herald / File Photo

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December 5 (Reuters) – Detectives plan to interview an artist linked to the Detroit studio where the parents of a 15-year-old Michigan school gunman were found following a manhunt, a local sheriff said on Sunday.

Andrzej Sikora, 65, will be questioned to determine what role, if any, he had in the disappearance of James and Jennifer Crumbley, Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard said in a written statement.

“We will vigorously investigate the entire situation so that a determination can be made whether there is a crime or obstruction of justice,” Bouchard said. “Our findings will be presented to the prosecutor.”

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A lawyer representing Sikora, Clarence Dass, said in a statement to the Detroit Free Press that his client “maintains his innocence throughout this process and is cooperating fully with law enforcement to assist them in their investigation.”

Ethan Crumbley, 15, was arrested Tuesday following the shooting at Oxford High School in suburban Oakland County, about 30 miles (48 km) northwest of Detroit. He is being held without bail and charged as an adult in the attack, the deadliest American school shooting of 2021.

Four students were killed and seven others, including a teacher, were injured.

Police, FBI agents and the US Marshals Service have started searching for James Crumbley, 45, and Jennifer Crumbley, 43, after Oakland County prosecutors announced manslaughter charges against the couple.

They are accused of purchasing the handgun for their teenage son as an early Christmas present and then ignoring warning signs that he was planning a mass high school shootout.

Detroit Police Chief James White told reporters early Saturday the couple were found hiding in a commercial building east of the city, the site of Sikora’s art studio. White said they did not break into the building, but were let in by someone with access.

Dass said Sikora contacted the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office after the Crumbleys’ arrest.

“Sir. Sikora has not been charged with any felony. Nonetheless, after learning of the Crumbleys’ arrest on December 4, 2021, he voluntarily contacted the Detroit Police Department and the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office to provide information, ”Dass said in his written statement to the Free Press.

James and Jennifer Crumbley both pleaded not guilty to four counts of manslaughter on arraignment on Saturday and were ordered to be held in lieu of $ 500,000 bail. Read more

An attorney for the Crumbleys said the couple were not trying to flee law enforcement and planned to surrender.

A 14-year-old student injured in the attack was released from a hospital on Sunday. A student remains hospitalized, listed in stable condition.

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Reporting by Dan Whitcomb; Editing by Peter Cooney

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