The bizarre death of a graduate student at Dartmouth College remains a bit of a mystery. The body of Mikhail Lomakin, 24, was found on Interstate 91 in October. Tuesday, an Upper Valley man who police say is connected to the case appeared in court.
Authorities do not believe Shane Harlow of Hartford caused the death of Lomakin. But they say he ran over Lomakin's body on the highway and didn't stop. Harlow pleaded not guilty Tuesday to the charge on leaving the scene of an accident and was released on conditions.
Police say Harlow was leaving work when he ran over Lomakin, who was lying in the middle of Interstate 91. According to court papers, Harlow did not stop and did not immediately tell authorities he had hit Lomakin. Police tracked Harlow down after a co-worker of his, who was also leaving work at the time, ran over Lomakin's body as well. Police say that man did stop and immediately call authorities.
"It is not the state's theory that Mr. Harlow caused this death. And so, that absolutely leaves open the possibility that there was a third vehicle involved, which actually would have been an initial vehicle involved. And to my knowledge, there are no leads whatsoever on who that might be," Windsor County Prosecutor Robert Sand said.
Sand would not comment on cause of death because he says at this time it is not a matter of public record. An autopsy was conducted, but Sand declined to comment on that as well.
According to the affidavit, when Harlow did finally call authorities, he told them that he saw a body that had appeared to have been run over. But it wasn't until police questioned Harlow in person that he admitted to hearing a thud while travelling past the body. Police found blood on the undercarriage of Harlow's vehicle to back that up.
We do know that Lomakin was walking on the interstate that night. We reached out to Captain Ray Keefe with the Vermont State Police Tuesday who confirmed that fact and said that Lomakin was very drunk at the time.