This may be a little off topic for this blog, but I want to do a post on this. And if the suspicion that surrounds the case is correct then it certainly applies here. I have relatives in Columbus, Ohio. So I have been watching this for some time.
Every city has their share of murders, and even some disappearances. And Columbus has quite a few murders. But they also have a lot of disappearances. Young men and women who disappear out of the blue. A few have been found deceased months or even years later. Their families will never see their faces, because often what they get back are skeletal remains.
But there are others. Those where years go by and they haven’t been found. Their families are in that limbo. Fearing they will never see their child alive- yet hoping that they are still out there somewhere. Yet as the years go by, that hope shrinks, and the despair gets replaced by just a desire to know what happened.
There are other cases out there, but I am going to write today about just one of those young women.
Ashley Lynn Howely was 20 years old. An adult, but still trying to find her path in the world. She was a pretty girl, her face still having some of that roundness you associate with teen girls.
As I said, Ashley was still trying to find her niche in the world. She was young, who knows what changes she would have made in her future? She worked as an exotic dancer. She danced under the stage name “Skyy”. She had her own apartment and a car. She had her own friends. And she had a family. Her family didn’t have money. And to be honest, there were rumors or hints of maybe some alcohol or drug involvement. There wasn’t much media coverage of her disappearance.
On June 24, 2004 Ashley and a friend went to a local pool. While they were there, a male whom she “knew intimately” came up to her and allegedly threatened to kill her. Friends have said that the boyfriend abused her. It is known that Ashley later called 911, and said she had been assaulted by her boyfriend…..but she refused medical care. According to the police, Ashley alleged the boyfriend had hit her on the head, choked her and threatened to kill her. That is the last official time that anyone talked with her. It is known that after the assault Ashley had planned to pack some belongings and go to a friend’s home, however she never arrived.
Ashley may have talked with her family on June 18, 2004 in the early morning hours. Records show that her cell phone was used a couple of days after her disappearance. There were unconfirmed sightings of her on June 17 and 18. There has been no contact from her since.
When Ashley did not contact her relatives by Father’s Day, June 20, her family became concerned and on June 23, went to her apartment. They did not find her there. But her car was in the parking lot and her dog was barking inside.
On July 9, detectives searched her apartment and found no signs of foul play. And her car was not in the parking lot. About a month later, her car was found a few blocks from her home. It was covered in debris and the glove box was empty.
Weeks after her disappearance police received a tip that Ashley had been murdered and her body was dumped in an undisclosed location.
Howley’s body has never been found. Her boyfriend is the prime suspect in her disappearance. The boyfriend was on probation at the time of Ashley’s disappearance, but his probation was revoked in Oct. 2004 for failing to attend counseling, he tested positive for drugs and because there was evidence that he assaulted Ashley prior to her disappearance.
http://www.ohmw.org/missing.asp (This link also has information on others who are missing from Ohio, and contains the ones missing from the Columbus area.)
The family appears to be at that stage where they don’t believe that Ashley is still alive any longer. But they still want her back. As another mother with a missing adult child pointed out…..anytime you lose a child, that is the most awful thing that can happen. But when you don’t even have a grave to go to, a place to grieve and commune with your child, that is worse.
This family deserves to have their child home. If you know anything about Ashley Howely or her disappearance you are asked to contact the Columbus police dept or Crimestoppers. You can make a report anonymously.
Lost in Lima Ohio has a post from Ashley’s cousin. You can hear the pain and the plea in her writing. They want her home. Yet, with no body there has been little attention to the case. It has joined others in that deep and dusty Cold Case drawer. Ashley’s family, like other families need their children home.
With Robert MacMichael II in jail awaiting trial on charges that he murdered his mother and her boyfriend, police have now announced they have received information on Ashley Howley.
“Investigators received information that there were human remains in this area,” Columbus Police Sgt. Rich Weiner said. “Over the last couple days, they came into the area, and we have confirmed that we have found human remains.”
Are the remains Ashley Howley? Will this family finally be able to put their loved one to rest? At this point it is too early to tell as the remains are skeletal and other means will have to be used for an identification. The remains were found in woods behind of the home of MacMichael II’s father. An address where MacMichael once lived.
Thanks goes to LILO for the update.
Thanks to AlwaysInFlyoverCountry we have another update.
The remains that were found have been officially identified as the remains of Ashley Howely.