Finding Asha Degree, Shelby's Sweetheart

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Debunking The Hit-and-Run Theory

I often peruse those forums dedicated to sleuthing unsolved cases, and it’s a good-good thing with a lot of intelligent folks who really care. But, there is the occasional ‘hit-and-run’ theory related to Asha Degree’s case that I find has veered way off course, and could get in the way of productivity, and bringing Asha home.

I want to take a minute–or three–to explain why I don’t believe Asha was hit by a car, a trucker, or one of the witnesses’ vehicles.

Assuming a child made it to that spot on the highway and the unfortunate happened: someone hit the child amidst the pitch-black, stormy night at 55mph, and for whatever reason (there are lots of reasons floating around the web), the guilty party decided to cover up the accident.

First, remember the driver doesn’t have any more light than the highway affords them–which is none, other than an occasional motorists’ headlights–and that’s not enough to do the cover up.

There were no streetlights.

Said cover up would entail finding everything that had scattered and flew everywhere: books, shoes, clothes, binder, pencils, pictures, tiny hair clips and the list goes on.

Nothing was found on the street, or the grass, gutters, gullies, woods, nowhere.

The best way to help with cases like Asha’s, is to envision yourself IN the happenings; it’s here where you get a clear picture and a better result.

NOTE: I am not trying to make a game out of this exercise. This is not a game. My purpose is to inform in hopes this ‘I am there, and I see more clearly’ exercise helps you in other ways as well.

So, here we go. You are the guilty party trying to cover up the bad deed: hiding the fact you’ve hit a person.

Go ahead and envision the torrential downpour of rain, the fogged windshield, and the dark night with no street lights. All of a sudden you hear and feel you’ve hit something. You’re not sure, but you think you hit a person. You aren’t supposed to be driving a vehicle. If caught, you could be in big trouble.

You can’t afford for people to see you on the road, so you must work quickly.

Imagine trying to find ‘things’ (you have no idea ‘what’ and how much of ‘what,’ you are looking for). So, you’re trying to madly pick everything up in the downpour of rain, while moving about in near-complete darkness.

And because this was an accident, you are not equipped for the task ahead. Just visualize cleaning up after messy children. You’ll need all sorts of stuff: soap, plastic bags, scrubber, broom, bucket, sponges/rags etc.

You cannot afford to let even a food stain settle on the pavement. You don’t know what you are cleaning there in the darkness. You keep turning your headlights (assuming they still work) on and off to see.

This theory seems more and more kind of a stretch. Don’t you think?

So, let’s consider you, the driver, succeeded in cleaning the highway, nearby woods, grassy yards, gullies, gutters, and dormant cornfields of the tiniest hair bow and stain that penetrated those crop remnants

Now, you are left to pick the injured person up cleanly (without any trace of yourself), efficiently (time-wise) and effectively (no trace of the injured) to keep from being found out. It’s going to be daylight any minute. Did you get everything? Everything?

Well, there’s a pesky critter called a trained sniffer dog you need to really worry about; and then there are planes with infra-red equipment, helicopters, and a hoard of helpful and determined searchers, both professionals and volunteers on foot and horseback–sun up to sun down.

And I’d venture to say many have binoculars. Did you remember yours? Surely you couldn’t expect to see everything without the aid of lenses–and light, of which you most likely didn’t have while you checked for everything.

See how putting yourself into the scene allows for a clearer idea of what’s rational and what isn’t. Another helpful way to find things out, is to ask yourself what and why until there is no more of either to ask.

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