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Sandy Hook Promise Statement On Second Oxford High School Shooting Verdict

NEWTOWN, Conn. – Sandy Hook Promise applauds the jury’s decision in the trial of the Oxford High School (Michigan) shooter’s father. This landmark decision, which comes in the weeks following an identical verdict for the shooter’s mother, reinforces the need for parental involvement in safeguarding students from accessing unsecured weapons to prevent gun violence in schools. This case reaffirms the precedent set for accountability for securely storing a firearm, an issue which the American Academy of Pediatrics says could save hundreds of children and adolescents’ lives each year.

“The Oxford High School mass shooting was a tragedy that could have been prevented. This court decision underscores the need for adult accountability when it comes to securing firearms to keep kids safe,” said Mark Barden, co-founder and CEO of Sandy Hook Promise and father of Daniel, who was killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting. “When parents and trusted adults securely store weapons in their homes, they play a critical role in ensuring the safety of their own children and many others. Saving children’s lives is not a partisan issue: the overwhelming majority of voters support sensible gun policy reforms because we all want to live in communities that are free from gun violence.”

In 2019, Sandy Hook Promise (SHP) supported the passage of Ethan’s Law in Connecticut, which strengthened the state’s safe firearm storage requirements. In 2023, SHP also supported a similarly proposed law in the Ohio legislature that would reduce gun violence while also supporting responsible gun ownership. SHP applauds these efforts to codify the safe storage of weapons and calls upon parents and policymakers to act in support of these kinds of policies which would save countless more innocent lives.

Every trusted adult plays a critical role in advocating for measures that will ensure no young person has access to a weapon, especially if they are exhibiting warning signs of violence.  Elected officials must build on the momentum established by the precedent in Michigan through a holistic approach that encourages the secure storage of firearms, dedicates resources for youth mental health, and provides funding for violence prevention education that teaches how to respond to warning signs. Bipartisan solutions that uphold these critical measures will make our schools and communities safer. 


Sandy Hook Promise (SHP) envisions a future where all children are free from school shootings and other acts of violence. As a national nonprofit organization, SHP’s mission is to educate and empower youth and adults to prevent violence in schools, homes, and communities. Creators of the life-saving, evidence-informed “Know the Signs” prevention programs, SHP teaches the warning signs of someone who may be in crisis, socially isolated, or at-risk of hurting themselves or others and how to get help. SHP also advances school safety, youth mental health, and responsible gun ownership at the state and federal levels through nonpartisan policy and partnerships. SHP is led by several family members whose loved ones were killed in the tragic mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School on December 14, 2012. 

Media Contact:

Aimee Thunberg | [email protected] | 646.761.5579