Real life is not the movies.
Things are not wrapped up in a neat bow, motivations are not explained, and things often don’t make sense.
Two weeks ago, a man driving “triple digits” in a Dodge Charger exited the Taconic State Parkway at Underhill Avenue, blew through a stop sign, and t-boned an SUV, injuring a mother and her 19-year-old daughter. Here is the original article.
In an ideal world, the man responsible would have been arrested and locked up for endangering the welfare of so many innocent people. When you drive your car that fast and that recklessly, you become a weapon that can inflict serious damage. Given how fast the car was traveling and the condition of the SUV, it is a miracle that nobody was killed.
However, you may have heard that the man has yet to face justice. According to the New York State Police, he ran. Hours of searching with a helicopter and what appeared to be a dozen police cruisers yielded no results. The man was never found.
Since we first reported the incident, we’ve learned some new details that only raise more questions. Of course, complicating matters is the fact that police didn’t actually see him run. According to police, a witness told the officers in which direction the man was heading. This has obviously led to some interesting conspiracy theories from readers of this newspaper.
The car was registered to a place in the Bronx, but the driver did not own the car. In fact, the owner of the car was a passenger that day. The three passengers who remained in the Charger were described by police as “uncooperative.” They would not tell police what they were doing or where they were heading. They also provided no information about the driver. Despite calls to arrest the tight-lipped trio, police told us that they are not in custody as no laws were broken.
By the time you read this, it will have been 12 days since the car crash. Every day the man is not arrested, frustrations grow.
But, as I said earlier, this is not the movies. The suspect didn’t leave behind a perfect trail of evidence for a brilliant-yet-troubled detective to uncover. There are no surveillance cameras that captured the crash in crystal clear resolution. We have only vague second-hand descriptions of a man (Hispanic, short haircut, a little on the heavy side) police never actually saw.
We have no clue why he was driving 100-plus miles-per-hour on the parkway or where they were heading. Why was the owner of the car not driving? If the driver did run, why did he make the mind-boggling decision to run a quarter of a mile across the bridge toward Baldwin Road instead of to the woods immediately surrounding him in almost every other direction? Where did he hide? How did he make it out of the area without detection?
The more one thinks about the crash and its aftermath, the less sense it makes. We find it satisfying when a story has a beginning, middle and ending, where we have a narrative that makes sense and everybody’s intentions are clearly explained (or at least implied). Remember how crazy everybody went over “The Sopranos” finale? We hate those pesky loose ends and unanswered questions.
Of course, because it’s an active investigation, police may have more information than they are telling us. Some of that information could help us fill in a few blanks. Or, they might be scratching their heads right along with us. Whatever the case may be, I expect they’re working hard with whatever evidence they have to make sure the suspect is held responsible for his reckless actions. I’m sure that they, too, have thought of the same theories.
As a newspaper, our ultimate goal is to find and report the truth. Sometimes, though, we never find it. And when we do, it just doesn’t make any sense.