It was the night of Dec 16, 2011 when Ayla’s dad said he put her in her bed. That is the last time anyone says they saw the little 20 month old girl. Friday, the Maine State Police held a news conference to update the situation. They are still following up on leads, the case is still active and they still are looking for Ayla who was last seen in Waterville a year ago. But there are no answers.

As an outsider looking in, tragedy seems to weigh more at this time of the year. However, that is ridiculous. Tragedy is just that, tragic, anytime of year.  My heart is heavy every time I look at photos of Ayla.  I don’t know her, but because of the mystery around what happened to this beautiful little girl, this case feels very personal for Central Maine.  For her, for her family and for the community, we all want to see this case resolved, no matter the conclusion.  Personally, I would love to see a happy movie type ending, but that does not seem realistic.

It is also easy to second guess the work the police are doing, or not doing. I have read  alot of blog posts about these sorts of feeling. Sadly, the reality of these cases is not like on TV where answers come quickly and cases get resolved. Testing takes time and sometimes answers don’t come right away, but that does not mean all hope is lost. Just this summer, Maine’s oldest open murder case was solved.  An Augusta woman was killed in her home in 1976. Modern technology and some police work helped to solve that case. The case was cold, but not forgotten, just as Ayla’s case will not be forgotten by the police or any of us.