Young woman’s Facebook post about meaning of shirt left on windshield goes viral

Photo taken by Ashley Hardacre of a flannel shirt left on her windshield. Authorities say this is a tactic being used by human traffickers targeting young women. (Facebook)

A 19-year-old Michigan woman’s chilling warning posted on Facebook has gone viral after it has purportedly explained the sinister meaning of what seems at a glance to be a rather mundane sight. Ashley Hardacre works at a mall in Flint, Michigan, and in her viral post said she’s always careful about walking with others to her car in the parking lot when she’s leaving after wrapping up the late shift. Last week, after leaving at work late at night, she arrived at her vehicle and found a flannel shirt lying on her windshield.

“There were two cars near me and one was running so I immediately felt uneasy and knew I couldn’t get out to get it off,” the windshield Hardacre recalled. “At first I thought maybe someone had just thrown it on my car for some odd reason. I used my windshield wipers to try to get them off but the shirt was completely wrapped around my wiper blade.” Hardacre said her parents had warned her to be suspicious if an out-of-place object mysteriously showed up on her windshield — a warning that she heeded.

“Luckily I knew better than to remove the shirt with cars around me so I drove over to a place where I was safe and quickly rolled down my window and got the shirt off,” she explained in the post. Hardacre had witnessed a new tactic reportedly being used by human traffickers to abduct young women, according to a report by CBS 12, a local news station in Florida. Traffickers, some say, want potential victims to get out of the car and attempt to retrieve the item, leaving them in a distracted and vulnerable position to be abducted. Similar claims about traps set using free jewelry left on car windshields in the past have been investigated, though authorities reportedly weren’t able to prove there was a connection to human traffickers.

The ability to recognize subtle signs is critical in combating human traffickers. Like Hardacre’s decision to follow her sharp instincts possibly averted a devastating outcome, so too was the case recently aboard an Alaska Airlines flight. In that scenario, flight attendant Shelia Fedrick, who was well-trained on the subtle signs that belie a human trafficker, followed her instincts and used some clever thinking to help save a young girl who was being trafficked.

Read the full story at AOL.com.


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