it has been a strange 48 hours,

It is now 11:52 p.m.

I just got back
from Los Angeles.

I am very tired,
and just a little bit disoriented.

But, I will do the best that I can,
here and now.

I am not really sure
just when I started,
but I think
it was late yesterday afternoon
that I was finally able to sit down
at the computer
and begin to search
for any update
on the facts of the case.

I searched through
different news accounts
and could find nothing new.

As I thought about it,
I realized that perhaps
I should try
a different approach.

So, I ran a query,
as follows:

Michael Hastings accident investigation

As it turns out,
that was exactly
the right thing to ask.

For, the next thing I know
I have located
the original KTLA news story,
which had been pulled,
by KTLA,
in less that 24 hours.

It been posted to
of all places.

But, that was nothing
compared to what else I found.

For someone else had posted
raw news footage
which was shot by
local roving news people.

And it was riveting.

I could not believe
what I was watching.

The quality and quantity
put the KTLA footage
to shame.

After watching
this incredible footage,
taken within minutes
of the collision taking place,
I searched some more
an then found a piece of footage
taken by the same news people
just several minutes before the collision
as their dashboard camera
just happened (?)
to catch Michael,
in his last minutes of life,
flying through the intersection
of Santa Monica Blvd
and Highland Avenue,
just about 3/10 of a mile
above the collision site.

At first I thought that
it was police car footage,
but after a few minutes
I realized that it was actually
the news people,
on the beat.

One could see that the vehicle
was traveling
at a fairly high rate of speed
and that it just blew through the signal.

That looks really bad,
I thought to myself
as I began to read
the various comments
from a number of viewers.

One person remarked
how the car only looked
to be going 50-60 mph,
which is far short of the speed
at which it apparently collided
with the palm tree.

The other was stranger still,
as the writer of the comment
asked whether anyone else
could see that the brake lights
were on as the car passed
through the signal.

I at first wondered
how that could even be possible.

Why would someone
be riding the brakes
as they blew through a red signal,

Especially when they are accelerating
up to 100 plus mph?

It just didn't make sense,
such that I put it
in the back of my mind,
and left the matter alone,
until many hours later.

My first order of business,
after locating the incredible raw footage
was to get copies made of both it
and the KTLA report
which had been so quickly pulled.

So, for a good deal
of the rest of the night
I went back and forth
between copying footage,
by filming it right off the screen,
with a video camera,
and studying the footage
to see if there was
anything new to add.

One of the first things
which I noticed
was that the shaft
sticking out of the engine
appeared to be
aiming up
in the KTLA footage,
shot during the daylight hours,
while it appeared to be aiming down,
in the footage
shot within minutes
following the collision.

The footage shot during the night
was far better than the footage
which KTLA showed,
such that I was able
to see that the engine
actually was in a lot better condition
than it had appeared
in the KTLA daylight footage.

This was due to the fact
that the KTLA shot
was shot from far across
the boulevard,
with a long telephoto lens,
which caused the colors and details
to compress rather dramatically.

In the night shot the cameraman
had a steady video light on
so that I could get
a very good look
at the engine.

It looked like it was
in pretty good shape,
with no obvious burn marks,
which seemed to be 
in the KTLA shot
from far across the street.

The night cameraman
got right up next to the engine
and then walked around it,
showing it from all sides
with that steady white light
which made it easy
to see just exactly
what condition the engine was in.

I intend to study it some more later,
but it looked as I would expect,
other than the fact that it had flown
200 feet down the street
and onto the other side.

Very odd, indeed.

I was figuring out
that the street is divided
by a raised median divider
with grass and palm trees on it,
so that there is a southbound lane
on one side of the meridian
and a norhtbound lane on the other side.

But, after studying and restudying
the footage,
I was unable to ascertain,
with certainty,
which was the northbound lane
and which was the southbound lane.

My guess was that Michael
was in the southbound lane
and hit the tree
on the south side
of the raised meridian.

The first report/s which I heard
claimed that he had crossed the meridian.

He had not.

I had noted a rather large debris field,
and I was trying to ascertain
whether it was out in front
of the path of travel,
or whether it was to the rear
of the vehicle.

Same with the engine.

After awhile I determined
that all of the debris
and the engine had flown to the south, 
in the direction which the car
was originally moving,
as opposed to behind the car,
which would have been indicative
of an entirely different scenario.

I soon enough realized
that if I wanted to be absolutely certain
as to what was going on,
that I would simply have to drive
to Los Angeles
in order to know for sure.

By now it was getting quite late
so that I wanted to wrap things up
for the night.

I was just getting ready
to call it a night,
at about 4:30 a.m.,
when I suddenly remembered
that question about the tail lights.

For, now, all of a sudden,
the significance of the tail lights
finally sank in
as I realized that the reason
why somebody would be
trying to slam on the brakes
while blowing through a red signal
is because the control of the car
has been taken over,
such that Michael would be unable
to slow it down or stop it,
of his own accord.

Oh, I forgot to mention just who it was
that he was out here,
in Los Angeles to see.

Buit, I am so tired
that I am falling asleep
as I write this,
so that I will have to wait
until tomorrow
to tell you the rest of this story.

That will have to be all for now.

But, it is about to get
quite a bit more interesting.

So, please be patient
as I get a few hours
of much needed sleep.



12:28 a.m.
Ventura, California, USA