Ashley Reeves is a name that has become synonymous with courage and resilience. This young woman has been through more in her 17 years than most people experience in a lifetime. She has battled for her life three times and emerged victorious each time. Her story is one of inspiration and hope, and it has touched the hearts of people all over the world.
In this article, we will learn about her inspiring story of survival and where Ashley Keeves is now.
Who is Ashley Reeves?
Ashley Reeves was a 17 years old junior in high school, she lived in the Illinois community of Millstadt with her parents and her younger sister, Casey. She was doing well in school, had plenty of friends, and even had Jeremy as a boyfriend whom her parents admired.
Ashley was looking forward to graduating. She had no idea that Ashley would go through the unbelievable and survive to tell her tale just a year before she was scheduled to walk across the stage.
The unbelievable story of Ashley Reeves
The story of Ashley Reeves is quite interesting and it feels more like you are listening to a fictional tale with immense horror and suspense. It all started on Thursday, April 27, 2006, Ashley told her parents she was going to a job interview in Fairview Heights, a city approximately 20 minutes away from Millstadt where she lived.
After the interview, Ashley said she would play basketball and return home by her curfew of 10 o’clock. At about 3:30 pm, Ashley Reeves took Jeremy’s car for the day and drove off for the interview while carrying a change of clothing.
Curfew ended at 10:30 p.m., but Ashley was nowhere to be seen. Casey said that she hadn’t heard from her sister Ashley all day when her mother Michelle asked whether she had spoken to Ashley.
Ashley didn’t answer when Michelle and Casey called or texted her many times, unlike her. Michelle made a call to the St. Clair County Sheriff’s Office after sensing something wasn’t right.
Given that Jeremy was Ashley’s boyfriend and that she had been driving his car, detectives hauled him in for interrogation; nevertheless, they soon realized he was not responsible for her abduction.
Jeremy admitted to the police that he had given Ashley permission to use his vehicle to travel to a job interview and a basketball game. Investigators questioned Ashley about why she would play basketball at a park so far from her house when one was nearby unless she had a meeting.
Since Ashley was just 17 years old, her phone was in her mother’s name, so Michelle called the phone company as the police got closer to finding her. She had access to all of her incoming and outgoing call information in her phone records.
After looking over the logs, Michelle discovered that one particular number had made numerous calls. Samson Shelton, who was 26 years old, answered Michelle’s phone when she dialed the number.
If Samson had seen or heard from Ashley, Michelle enquired. Before she could inquire as to why he was speaking to her adolescent daughter, he replied “No” and hung up the phone suddenly. Thankfully, Ashley kept her friends informed about her personal life, and Michelle’s skin tingled when she heard what they told the police.
Ashley allegedly had a love relationship with an older man, according to her acquaintances. Ashley made plans to meet him the day she vanished since they frequently got together to play basketball. Samson Shelton was that person.
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Who was Samson Shelton
Samson was a driver’s ed teacher and gym coach at a nearby high school. He was also a pro wrestler on the side. Unsurprisingly, his nickname was “The Teacher.”
When Ashley was in the seventh grade in 2001, the detectives learned that Samson had been her instructor. Two months before she vanished, in February 2006, they had reconnected.
They frequently met at Laderman Park, close to where cops discovered Jeremy’s abandoned car, in Belleville, where Samson resided with his mother and grandmother.
Ashley had been absent for a whole night by this point on Friday, April 28.
Samson was arrested by detectives after they went to the high school where he worked and questioned him. They became aware of his involvement in Ashley’s disappearance very fast.
Samson first maintained a cool and collected demeanor, but as detectives discovered more and more of his lies, the truth started to come out of his mouth.
At first, Samson beat around the bush and his narrative had undergone numerous changes. Investigators did not take him at his word. Ashley had been absent for almost thirty hours at this point, and they begged him to be honest.
Samson didn’t begin to cry until the police noted how disappointed Samson’s grandmother would be with his behavior. After hours of investigation, he spilled the beans and gave a chilling and upsetting account of what he had done to Ashley and where he had left her to die 12 hours into the interrogation.
Samson didn’t simply remove Ashley from his car and abandon her by the side of the road, according to his confession on camera. Samson panicked and pulled her into the woods where he strangled her with his bare hands after realizing he had snapped her neck. He used his belt to choke Ashley once more when he realized she was still breathing.
Samson put the belt around Ashley’s neck and pulled as hard as he could until the belt broke, using his foot as leverage. Samson continued to hand-choke Ashley when the belt gave way before releasing her and leaving her to perish on the chilly, hard ground in the middle of the woods.
Samson confessed to the crime, and in exchange for a reward, he promised to direct police to Ashley’s body in Citizens Park, a 45-acre park in Belleville that is only 12 minutes from Ashley’s house.
But since it had poured all night, Samson had trouble recalling where he had left Ashley when they got to the park.
Detectives hastily searched the woods for thirty minutes with spotlights. They eventually saw Ashley just as they started to wonder if Samson was playing a prank on them. Her hands were resting on her chest as she lay on her back. Hundreds of mosquito bites covered her body, and her tongue was protruding from her mouth.
Ashley miraculously lived despite three attempts to strangle her to death and more than 30 hours of exposure to the elements. Immediately after arriving on the scene, EMTs took her to the nearest hospital, where she was placed into an induced coma.
Investigators wasted no time in starting their hunt for the missing adolescent because they understood how crucial the first 48 hours were. Eventually, Samson was arrested on the charges of a first-degree murder attempt on a 17-year-old girl Ashley Reeves.
Ashley Reeves Injuries
Ashley Reeves suffered a lot of injuries on the neck and most probably stayed in a coma for a while. You can view the brutality and savage attempt of murder through the following Ashley Reeves injury photos:
Ashley successfully recovered. Ashley was determined to pursue her aspirations despite the fact that she was unable to recall the day Samson attempted to kill her.
The extraordinarily resilient and brave adolescent had to relearn how to speak, eat, and drink a few months after the incident. She finished high school a year later and began working as a volunteer at a center for preventing violence. Today, she is living her life, she has given birth to two kids.