Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Opening the Box

Yesterday, a Virginia farmer opened Schrodinger's box and resolved the uncertainty of Morgan Harrington for the rest of the universe.

Harrington's body was well outside of any area that could be covered by a ground search. There are 314 square miles within a circle ten miles in radius. It would take 290,000 man-hours to grid-search such an area -- with well-trained and conditioned personnel.

That's why we don't do searches that way. Why there's an entire discipline devoted to juggling probabilities and figuring out where to look. Why a "search" conducted by main force -- throwing untrained pick-up volunteers at the ground en masse -- is an exercise in futility.

But ten miles is not that terribly far in the vehicular age. And the remote nature of the place where her body was dumped without concealment indicates the likelihood of a very local murderer, with very specific local knowledge. A crime of opportunity, not planned out, and the evidence disposed of in haste by someone who knew how to get to a remote and lonely spot.

Not like the last festering pustule who brought me to Virginia seeking better news about missing girls. He planned his atrocities carefully, disposed of his victims almost randomly.

Now the police need to heed the commandment (not command) that has driven Lilly and Mel and Pip and Sophia, the biggest thing I've ever asked of a dog, what I've asked above all else for the past eighteen years.

Find him.


  1. Agreed completely.

    Just hope the guy left enough clues for them to piece together quickly and efficiently. The last thing they need is a Derris Lewis fiasco.

    Concerts are fun times, but there always has to be an element of caution, especially at those of the rock/metal variety. It's incredibly sad that this girl had to learn that lesson this way, and I sympathize with her family. Sad that your and Pip's search efforts were in vain, even with the fact that the area was too large to search efficiently. At least there's closure.

  2. Crap. Are the Columbus cops going to bother to, you know, find the actual murderers?

    I just finished Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil which is enough to kill any trust one might have in the cops, "police procedures," and prosecutors. No matter what you think really happened.

  3. For me it was LA Confidential, which certain parts of were based on actual events.

  4. Well, either they're searching in their spare time without letting on to the press or they're just half-arsing it. There was one big update on how Derris was doing as a The OSU student, but aside from that, no case status updates or anything. Most of these things just kind of get lost in the shuffle of everything else that goes on, although I think a big enough stink was made over this murder and Big Mistake that people are pretty much out for the blood of whoever did this.

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