Here we are 14 months into this case. There is no sign of Haleigh Cummings. But online this missing child has become what can only be described as a phenomenon. Unfortunately most of the enthusiasm displayed in the early days has now disintegrated into an ongoing war of attrition. Attrition both in the press, the ‘experts’, and members of the general public.

Everyone has become polarized. There are the Ron Cummings fans, and in equal numbers the Ron Cummings haters. The Misty Croslin didn’t do it crowd, and the Misty Croslin must have done it mob. There are those that maintain that the biological mother Crystal was the guilty party. Others maintain it was Cousin Joe, Drug Dealers on a rampage wanting payment, Pedophiles wishing to sell the little girl into a life of sex abuse, etc. In fact about the only story I have not heard is that she was kidnapped by aliens, but I am sure that it got floated around somewhere.

So, here we sit 14 months later, and what do we know? The answer to that question is larger than the State of Texas. Alas none of this information seems to be bringing an answer to the simple question of what happened to Haleigh Cummings.

Here is my take, and I have no doubt that it will annoy most, if not all of the online camps.

Having been around the block more than a couple of times, the questions boil down to motive, accessibility, and expected result. All crimes have these aspects, the importance of one single aspect may vary from case to case, but they are always present.

Motive is a strange animal, for some it may be monetary, for others it might be revenge, or even sheer bloodymindedness.

The only person that could benefit in a monetary fashion from Haleigh Cummings was her mother Crystal. But this makes no sense. Crystal owed $12,000 in back child support, no-one doubted that for a moment. Would Crystal make her own daughter disappear to make the bill go away? That is an unlikely scenario. Crystal, by her own admissions had issues with substance abuse and maintaining a regular job. Do not get the idea that I am supporting her position, I am not. I think she is an idiot.

Next we have the little girls father, Ronald Cummings. I’ll be honest, I consider this man to be a waste of oxygen. However, he was the provider for the family, and did actually have a job. As best I can tell he had no motivation, monetary or other, to harm his daughter. I personally think he is an idiot, but that is just my view. If he wanted to divest himself of children, he would not have stopped with Haleigh, Jr. would have been included in the package.

That leaves us with Misty Croslin. At the time she was 17 and the live in baby sitter to the kids and also Ron’s lover.  Misty is no Snow White, but would she do something bad to a 5 year old? That is a question that I have wrestled with for months. She clearly has no concept of telling the truth. That has become very clear with her changing stories and the ‘leaked’ lie detector test results.

However I have to ask the question, what was in it for Misty?

It is obvious that there was no monetary gain for Misty. Haleigh’s disappearance would not change anything in Misty’s life, she would still have to deal with Jr.

This has been 14 months of frustration, and there is no light at the end of the tunnel. The family has been sliced and diced in the press and continues to be. Do they deserve this treatment? Oh, my answer is a resounding YES. However I also think that it is high time that everyone take a step back and look at this case with objectivity rather than venom.

Haleigh Cummings will be part of our program tomorrow. Tune in at 3pm central

Simon Barrett

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