An eyewitness on the raw news footage shot by LOUDLABS NEWS, currently posted on You Tube, describes, in broken English, what seems to be a description of Michael bottoming out and losing control at this intersection of Melrose and Highland Avenue.  I was looking to see if there were any fresh marks that would be consistent with this story.  One can see a very fresh set of very dark skids with one tire appearing to wriggle, indicated by a slight curvature of the line and by a squiggling.  While I cannot be certain that this was him, I believe that it probably was.  The darkest black treadmarks on the white crosswalk line are part of the skids which go all the way across the intersection, consistent with the eyewitness account.  I could find no torn asphalt, as will sometimes happen when a car bottoms out.  This one would be at very high speed, and would tend to be more airborne than otherwise, but would also hit harder, one would think.  The distance from this point to the tree is only several hundred feet, which would be consistent with losing control and crashing, as often does happen with street racing, or over correcting the steering.

A detail shot of the skid marks in question.

 A closeup of the skids in question.

Another closeup of the skids in question.

The tree.  Notice the burns around the tree.  Also notice how high up the tree they went.  And finally, note the direction of the chunk taken out of the tree.  It appears that there is an impression left by the tires in the lawn as the vehicle suddenly veered to the left and hit the tree.  The car was traveling southbound and has ended up hitting the tree while traveling eastward.  Cars can and do snap in one direction or another in this type of vehicular accident, such that nothing definitive can be gleaned from this alone.

Another shot of the scene, a little wider.  One can smell diesel very strongly.  I put my finger down into the charred material and brought it to my nose.  Very strong odor of the smell which you will smell when you spray lighter fluid on charcoal and light it up at a barbecue.  Diesel has a very high ignition temperature and does not normally explode into a huge fireball.  I was told, when working in ambulance rescue, that it requires a blowtorch to light it up, not a match.  I have never personally tested this, but the information came from firefighters who I assumed knew what they were talking about.  We spent a lot of time on bridges and other places with crashed big rigs with diesel all over the ground beneath our feet, so that it was or more relevance to us, that to others.  It was also a big issue in the World Trade Center 7 building collapse (the third building which no one ever talks about;  run a query if you want to know more about that) where it was claimed that a huge tank of diesel fuel, used for emergency generators, is what caused a fire which caused the steel to melt - many structural engineers complaining that this is a physical impossibility due to the igntion temperature required to light the fuel and the fact that it doesn't burn hot enough to melt steel.  That discussion seeming to me to be especially relevant to this collision scene with a very hot fire which started immediately with what at least one neighbor claimed was a loud explosion.  If it was diesel, which is typical of Mercedes engines, then how did it light up so fast and so hot?

One of several writings left at the scene by well-wishers.  It reads as follows: 

 "Michael Hastings - I will miss your voice - your unrelenting, visceral quest for truth.  One day historians will say that your writings not only brought "down" an arrogant general --- but also helped change our course in Afghanistan.  They say the first casualty in war is truth - and your writing didn't let "truth" die.  I hope you now feel the comfort of those who have gone before you --- your fiance, Tim Hetherington, Chris Hondios.  May our Lord's tender mercies envelop you with love.  No one can hurt you now.  Theodora beltson." 

I cannot explain why, but this one really gets to me, and makes me cry as I read it, and consider just exactly what it is saying.




"Thank you for being a journalist who had the courage to tell the truth.  So many of us have compromised, but your life and work has inspired this writer to follow in your footsteps".

"I pray, that your death was an accident and not purposely done by those who didn't like you.  To the man who dug for the truth god bless u."




A detail shot pointing north, toward Melrose, in southbound lane of Highland.  Where are the skid marks?  There are none.  That is not just strange, it is extra strange.  Was the car airborne when it turned hard left and slammed into the tree?  And if so, why exactly.

A shot showing more of the stretch just north of the collision scene.  Notice there are no skids.  Compare the skids at the intersection, above, on the white paint.  There should be similar skids, for same physical reasons, here.  But there are none.  What does this mean?  I have no idea.  But, I hope the investigators take a hard look at this and consider just what are the actual physical possibilities.

Detail shot from the south side of the tree, aiming north.  It stinks, strongly of diesel, on the date when I was there - June 21,2013 - three days later.

One more long shot of scene and southbound Highland Avenue lane, looking north, toward Melrose.  No skids, consistent with high speed vehicle losing control, veering, and slamming into a tree.  Where are the skids?  And why are they not present?  There may be a rational reason, but I sure would like to hear one that actually comports with the known laws of physics as currently taught in physics classes throughout the known world.

This is the storm drain which can be seen in the KTLA footage which I first saw, and can also be seen in the LOUDNEWS LABS footage.  This is where the engine landed.  It is about two hundred feet down the road, and across the streets, on the far side of the northbound lane of Highland Avenue, on the corner of Clinton Street.  The question which needs to be considered is how the engine traveled laterally to the force of impact, at such a long distance.  They will normally go in the direction of the vehicle, which was traveling eastward when it hit the tree.  The vehicle may have twisted when it hit.  But was there so much residual energy in the southerly direction that the very large and very heavy engine block continued southward?  Maybe.  But, it would also be consisent with an explosive force which would have propelled it in another direction than the vehicle.  This one single piece of evidence has raised a lot of eyebrows.  Again, I don't want to go "all crazy" on you and say that is proves any particular thing.  Nevertheless, it should be looked at very closely by people who specialize in such matters, I would think.  Will we ever know the real answer?  That all depends --- sadly.

A detail shot of the place where the engine landed.

Some sort of metallic looking material which has fused with the asphalt.  I think that this indicates how hot the fire was burning, as in VERY hot.  Why is this even still sitting in the street?  I can only wonder. 


A detail shot of the metallic glob fused into the asphalt.  It seems that there are more questions than there are answers on this scene.  Based upon my life experiences of 60 years, I do not expect to hear any truthful answers as to what this all means.  And that, my dear readers, is the real problem, here.  While you may all wait for a report to tell you what happened, I long ago learned to not bother, unless I just want to get madder and madder at the institutionalized lying, misdirection, and obfuscations, all done in the name of some higher purpose, but in fact being nothing more than several different lawless agendas slamming into one another in the middle of the night.  I want to say, "may the truth prevail".  But, I am unable to, having seen so many of these types of events, during my short, relatively "meaningless" existence, and knowing full well how the real world works, since I was much younger.  What a shame!