As more evidence was reported on the case, it became clear to most that Ayla did not get up and walk away on her own especially with a broken arm and the frigid temperatures in Maine in the winter that would have hindered her journey. It was reported that her mother and father were not in a relationship and that Justin DiPietro had taken custody of Ayla while her mother, Trista Reynolds was in rehab for 10 days. It is reported that he was to return Ayla back to Trista upon completion of her rehab program and he did not. Trista had went to the court two days before Ayla was reported missing and filed for parental rights and responsibilities to regain physical custody of Ayla. By all appearances, it looked like the mother had feared she would not win the court hearing and decided to take Ayla herself by sneaking into the house and stealing away into the night with her young daughter. As more evidence came to light, that scenario didn't hold water either.
|A Basement Similar to The House Layout|
at 29 Violette Ave
Justin will not tell the truth about what happened on the night of December 16th going into the morning of December 17th and because of this the public has a very negative perception of him. The majority of the public believe he is guilty and fatally injured Ayla and instead of calling 911 to report the injury he concocted a fake kidnapping story. It isn't the first time that has happened but Justin claims that children go missing in the middle of the night by some unknown abductor and leave no evidence behind.
Justin is partially right, children do go missing and the stories of the parents are similar but the evidence and the facts don't back it up and the police don't always buy their stories either. Statistics show that the scenario Justin is claiming took place is EXTREMELY rare and highly unlikely. In fact The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, President Ernie Allen says that in his thirty years of working with the organization they have handled 278 infant/toddler abduction cases and only 13 of those cases involved a stranger coming into the home and taking a baby and all but 1 of those children were recovered unharmed.
What is more plausible is that Justin killed Ayla and is lying to cover it up. Statistics show this is a more likely scenario. In fact, 1500 parents kill their kids every year. Far more young children are killed by their own parents than a stranger and when a stranger kidnaps a baby, they rarely harm them. They usually do it because they want the child for their own and the recovery rate on those cases is very, very high.
Many people have questioned if the death of the child was an accident why don't the parents just call 911 and tell them the truth? Why do they go to such great lengths to lie and say someone abducted their child? David Finkelhor from the Crimes Against Children Research Center notes that parents often concoct stories about a kidnapping after accidentally killing their child instead of facing the tragedy. The death is usually accidental but involved a serious negligence and the parents are so ashamed of themselves or the other parent that they dispose of the body or help the other parent dispose of the body and report a missing child.
I did some research and looked for cases of missing children that happened in the last 5 years that involve a child under 5 years old to see how many of these cases are similar to Justin's claims of someone coming into the home and no one saw or heard anything. I did find some cases and with some striking similarities not only in the initial claims by the parents as to what happened but also some with similar behaviors of the parents and also some similarities in statements and actions of the police officers and detectives working on the cases.
Joshua Davis-18 Months Old New Braunfels Texas Disappeared 2/4/11
Joshua was last seen around 9pm while he was watching television in the living room of his home while his family entertained friends and family members. Police say there is no evidence to suspect an abduction and that he possibly wandered off on his own. The police ruled out foul play. The mother says there is no way he could have opened the door himself, however a friend of the family stated that Joshua followed him outside when he left, shortly before he was reported missing and he claims he brought Joshua back inside. He hired a lawyer but police say he is not a suspect. The case is still unsolved.
This case is a little different because police have ruled out foul play whereas in Ayla's case police believe the opposite. Police do not think an abduction happened in this case either and unlike Ayla it is possible he walked off on his own although extensive searches have not uncovered anything. Another difference in this case is that CPS worked quickly and removed the other children out of the home and unfortunately they have not done that in this case and Gabby and Ayden are still at risk. The parents were reportedly involved in drugs and many think they are involved.
Lisa Irwin-10 months old Kansas City, MO Disappeared 10/3/11
Many of you are familiar with the case of Lisa Irwin and the similarities of this case and the Ayla Reynolds case are disturbing. Deborah Bradley states she last checked on Lisa at 10:30pm and her husband came home at 4:00am and discovered her missing. There was a window open in Lisa's bedroom and the door to the home was unlocked. The parents claims echo Justin's claims, someone came into the house unseen and unheard and took Lisa out of her crib and vanished into the night never to be seen again.
What happened during the investigation mirrors a lot of things as well, Deborah Bradley fails a polygraph test, the parents stopped cooperating with law enforcement, police also tell Bradley that they know she is not telling the whole truth about what happened to baby Lisa. Like the blood found in the basement bedroom of Justin DiPietro, cadaver dogs picked up the scent of a dead body by the mother's bed. Police have requested that they be allowed to interview the boys that also live in the home but Deborah denied access to them, in the request for a warrant, police claim inconsistencies from the people involved hampered the investigation from the beginning. Many believe that Lisa Irwin was harmed at the hands of her mother just like they believe Justin DiPietro is guilty of harming Ayla.
Aliayah Lunsford-3 years old Weston, WV
In the case of Aliayah Lunsford, she was supposedly in bed and disappeared. She was last seen by her mother at 6am and when she checked on her at 9am, she was gone. There were no signs of forced entry and the windows were secure. Although she did not disappear in the middle of the night when everyone was sleeping what happens next is similar to the Ayla Reynolds case.
There was no Amber alert issued because it did not fit the criteria. The family got a lawyer. The father failed his polygraph, the mother still has not taken one. Police labeled the case a criminal investigation and do not believe she walked out of the house on her own. It was uncovered that there was drug abuse in the family and chronic neglect and abuse. The parents were also guilty of welfare fraud. CPS removed the other children from this home as well.
Jhessye Shockley went missing from her home on Oct.11, 2011. Jhessye was home alone with her siblings aged 6,9, and 12. It was reported that she wandered away from her siblings and out the door. An Amber alert was issued because someone reported seeing her being placed in a car. The Amber alert was later cancelled. Jhessye's mother, Jerice refused a polygraph test and Jerice's aunt, Brenda Hunter began to suspect she knew more than she was telling police about her daughter's disappearance. Jerice urged whoever has her daughter to bring them some place safe. Police suspect Jerice is responsible for the death of Jhessye and based off evidence collected at the house, they believe Jerice killed Jhessye and dumped her body in a trash bin. She has still not been found.
Since the cases of Madeleine McCann and Caylee Anthony, it seems that as long as the parents hide the body well enough and it is not found or not found soon enough, no matter how many discrepancies in the stories of those suspected and no matter how much evidence points to the parents, there are no arrests without the body for fear of no convictions. Although the cases above are not exactly like Ayla's case, they all have one very important thing in common, in most cases the public does not buy the stories of the parents and neither does police. All of the children are still listed as missing and unless the children are found it is possible the parents, if guilty, will walk. There is hope of an arrest or arrests still, not all parents who have used the fake abduction story have gotten away with it.
Shelby Dasher beat her son to death because he would not go to sleep and she was tired, she then threw his body into the bushes at a nearby cemetery before going home and going to sleep. She called the police later and reported him missing using the exact story as Lisa Irwin's parents did.
Bianca Jones was murdered by her father, D'Andre Lane, he claims his car was carjacked with her in it. Although her body has not been found yet, police had more than enough evidence to charge him.
Aveion Lewis was reported kidnapped by his stepfather, Brandon Lockett. Lockett even tied up Aveion's sister and wrote a fake ransom note before admitting to police he staged the whole thing and Aveion was actually dead before he called 911.
Lauryn Dickens mother said Lauryn was abducted by an unknown woman after the woman claimed to be close to the girl's father and Lauryn's mother handed her over to her. Police did not buy the story and she has been charged in the murder of her daughter although her body has still not been found.
DiPietro supporters who claim that children go missing under these mysterious circumstances happen all the time. They are wrong. These cases garner the most media attention because they are a parent's worst fear but they do not happen often. The fake abduction stories actually seem to be a fairly new trend of excuses being used by parents to cover up the death of their child ever since the cases of Madeleine McCann and Susan Smith were publicized. Statistics do not back up Justin's claim that this is a common occurrence.
Heidi Tudela commented that 2000 children go missing a day. Heidi is correct in that regard, however she failed to mention that includes children under the age of 18. The majority of children under the age of 18 that are missing each day are run aways. Let's break this down...
The U.S. Department of Justice reports
- 797,500 children (younger than 18) were reported missing in a one-year period of time studied resulting in an average of 2,185 children being reported missing each day.
- 203,900 children were the victims of family abductions. This does not apply because LE has not stated publicly that they believe Trista took Ayla. This statistic applies to cases that it is certain the child was taken by another family member
- 58,200 children were the victims of non-family abductions. This also does not apply, because police have stated that this is not an abduction BUT lets pretend that LE never said that- this still only averages to about 159 children per day, not 2000.
- 115 children were the victims of “stereotypical” kidnapping. (These crimes involve someone the child does not know or someone of slight acquaintance, who holds the child overnight, transports the child 50 miles or more, kills the child, demands ransom, or intends to keep the child permanently.)