Thankfully, Ashlee Shorrock has come out of her induced coma, and is on the long road to recovery. But as the Herald on Sunday reports, that's no thanks to the "adults" involved, especially her father and step-mother; check this out:
The only woman involved in a quad bike crash which left a little girl in critical condition says she was sober and has been pressured into taking the blame because of that.
Four adults and 6-year-old Ashlee Shorrock were on the quad bike when it crashed down a ditch on Okaihau Rd near Waimarama Beach in Hawke's Bay shortly before midnight on Wednesday.
Twenty-two-year-old Stephanie Lucas is the first of those involved to break her silence.
She told the Herald on Sunday she couldn't remember who was driving but claimed the three men with her had asked her to tell police she was driving because she was the only one who had not been drinking.
"I wasn't intoxicated," Lucas said. "I had one drink all day. All I remember is one of the boys was driving. I know what we did was stupid but we are always on that motorbike and have driven that road thousands of times."
Police have confirmed they took blood from all four adults on the night of the crash, but had not been able to confirm who was driving.
Lucas believed the driver should own up. "I can't remember. If I did I would tell the police.
But they know who was driving and someone needs to own up," she said.
Lucas said she was sitting on the front of the quadbike holding her step-daughter Ashlee when they were thrown from the vehicle.
Ashlee's father, Daniel McGregor, and his two friends Kevin and Reece, whose surnames are yet to be released, were also on the bike. She said they had been drinking on the beach before driving up to a lookout shortly before midnight.
Ms Lucas claims that she didn't want to go for the ride, but given that she has been untruthful to the police, that claim too has to be taken with a grain of salt.But it is the actions of Ashlee's father and his so-called "mates" that really need to be called into question.
It's bad enough that they put a young child's life at risk through doing something blatantly stupid. It is far worse that they are duck-shoving, and trying to pass the blame for their stupidity to someone else.
Whoever the rider was needs to grow a pair and front up. We all make mistakes, and this one almost had tragic consequences. But if none of the men is prepared to man up and admit their mistake, the police should charge all four, included Ms Lucas; this might be a starting point:
Over recent years we have seen far too many cases where people have been able to stonewall police investigations into serious crimes. The Kahui twins' murder was the worst and most flagrant example. It is time for the NZ Police to get tough in cases like this, especially when the HoS has given them prima facie evidence of a conspiracy between those involved in this matter.
Perhaps the threat of a prison term for the conspiracy might be a memory-jogger for one of the quartet. Man up fellas.