FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Fort Wayne’s NBC) — Sergeant Dan Camp, a retired Fort Wayne detective, worked the April Tinsley case tirelessly for years, keeping her picture in his wallet until the day he retired.
Camp told Fort Wayne’s NBC he knew a suspect would eventually be caught even though it didn’t happen on his watch.
“I think about April often. I carried her picture in my wallet for a long, long time,” he says.
Camp retired from the Fort Wayne Police Department in 2005 after spending years on the Tinsley case with too many sleepless nights to count.
Not any more.
“Such a relief having this culminated after 30 long, exhaustive years,” he says.
Camp worked relentlessly on the case, chasing every lead he could.
He and his partner and a prosecutor even spent four days with the FBI at Quantico to develop a profile of the killer.
“They gave us the profile of the person that probably killed April. Matches him to a T. 29, white, single? Yeah, the whole nine yards. They hit it right on the head to what John Miller looks like and his characteristics today,” Camp says.
“Did you ever think this day would come? Yeah, I always had hopes that it would happen. The new DNA technology is just a wonderful thing, and I have every hope that it’s going to help many, many cases in the future,” he adds.
So does he think John D. Miller may be responsible for other crimes?
“I can’t hardly believe that if he can do such terrible things to a child, that he would not be connected in other criminal activity in the past,” he says.
In an eerie twist of fate, Camp never knew how close he’d come to the suspect.
“One of the jobs I had after I retired, I used to work for drug court. And we had clients that lived in that same trailer court that I was there a couple of times a week for months searching their trailer for drugs while they were in the program. And I don’t remember ever speaking to him, but I was that close to him many, many times,” he says.
He figures the only reason Miller stayed off the radar is because he never talked to anyone about the case.
“Actually, I was kind of surprised he was still in our community. I would think for self-preservation, if anything else, he would have moved away from our community. But I’m glad he hung around,” Camp says.
He’d be fine if this became a death penalty case
“I’m going to be there every day in the front row if I can and watching everything transpire,” he says.
Allen County Prosecutor Karen Richards says formal charges will be filed against John D. Miller on Thursday, when she may also announce whether she will seek the death penalty.