Hit and run driver identified 45 years later thanks to Facebook

Updated: 

Hit and run driver identified 45 years later thanks to Facebook

A driver who killed a girl in a hit-and-run incident 45 years ago has finally been identified thanks to a Facebook campaign.

Carolee Sadie Ashby was only four years old when she was struck by a car while crossing a street in Fulton, New York in 1968.

Since the fatal incident, police have failed to penalise a suspect.

Thanks to a retired detective's Facebook post, a former resident now living in Florida saw the appeal and came forward with fresh evidence.

Douglas Parkhurst, 62, of Oswego, New York has been identified as the driver of the car that failed to stop after hitting her.

But because the statute of limitations has expired, police will not be able to prosecute.

Parkhurst was questioned at the time when police learned he had been in an accident that same night. He confirmed a crash, but said it occurred in the neighbouring town of Volney, police said.

Parkhurst misled police at the time by saying his car hit a barrier, and although the damage on his vehicle didn't match the description, police decided not to question him again.

The woman, who police did not identify, recently came forward and told police that she was approached by a member of the Parkhurst family soon after the accident and asked to say she was with Parkhurst and his brother on Halloween night.

The woman refused to do so and was never told why they wanted her alibi, but she assumed it was related to the accident, police said.

Fulton police Sgt. Stephen Lunn Jr. said: "It was always the goal of the Fulton Police Department to attempt to bring whatever closure we could bring to the family."

Carolee's mother, Marlene, and the sister she was walking with on the night of the accident, Darlene McCann, still live in the Fulton area.

Attempts to reach them on Wednesday by phone and Facebook were unsuccessful.