(CBS/AP) FULTON, N.Y. - Authorities say a Facebook posting has helped police figure out who was driving a car that fatally struck Carolee Saide Ashby, a 4-year-old upstate New York girl 45 years ago.
The Fulton Police Department says Wednesday that 62-year-old Douglas Parkhurst has been identified as the driver of a car that failed to stop after hitting Carolee on Halloween night in 1968. Police say he won't be charged because the statute of limitations has expired.
Police say Carolee was crossing a street with her 15-year-old sister and cousin when she was hit. The driver was never caught.
Authorities say a former Fulton resident living in Florida provided Parkhurst's name after reading a retired detective's Facebook post about the cold case.
According to CBS affiliate WTVH, the woman who provided police with the tip said she was approached by a member of the Parkhurst family soon after the accident in 1968 and was asked to say she was with Parkhurst and his brother on Halloween night.
The woman reportedly refused and told police she was never aware of why she was asked to lie but assumed it had to do with the accident that killed Carolee.
Parkhurst was initially interviewed to police in 1968 when it was reported he had been in an accident that Halloween night with a 1962 tan Buick. Parkhurst admitted he had been in an accident but denied he hit a child and instead claimed he hit a guard post, WTVH reports.
According to the station, Parkhurst has now admitted to police that he consumed alcohol the night of October 31, 1968. He reportedly told police that while he was driving through Fulton, he thought he had hit something but believed it to be an animal at that time. He said he did not see what he hit and never stopped to look.
Parkhurst says he now knows he hit Carolee Ashby and confirmed he mislead police when questioned about the accident in 1968.
An Oswego County phone number for Parkhurst has been disconnected.