Three decades later, police say they know who killed 8-year-old IN girl April Tinsley.
The Fort Wayne Police Department and Indiana State Police on Sunday arrested 59-year-old John D. Miller, of Grabill, for the 1988 homicide of 8-year-old April Tinsley.
On July 2, officers began surveillance of Miller's home in Grabill, Ind. and eventually recovered three used condoms from his discarded trash, which in turn matched both the DNA found in Tinsley's underwear and the samples from the used condoms recovered in 2004. He's scheduled to appear Thursday in Allen Superior Court for a formal arraignment.
Suspected serial killer Joseph James DeAngelo, known as the Golen Stater Killer, was arrested after police used the same technique to track him down in April.
The Fort Wayne girl's body was found three days after her April 1988 abduction in a ditch about 20 miles away.
Eight-year-old April Tinsley was abducted from the south side of Fort Wayne in April 1988.
According to a probable cause affidavit, authorities pulled DNA evidence out of Miller's trash earlier in the month and returned to his residence Sunday.
One read: "I kill 8 year old April Marie Tisley I will kill agin". Police said the DNA extracted from the condoms was consistent with the DNA found in the condoms in 2004 and the DNA recovered in Tinsley's underwear in 1988, according to the affidavit.
"April Tinsley", the suspect allegedly told police, according to the affidavit.
John D. Miller was arrested in connection to April Tinsley's 1988 murder
Fourteen years after that, four taunting notes were found at various Fort Wayne residences, including several on bicycles that young girls left in their yards, the Federal Bureau of Investigation said.
April's body was discovered by a jogger three days later in a water-filled ditch in a rural field. I will kill again, ' on a barn door in 1990. Two years after the horrific murder took place, police discovered a note in a barn near the place from where Tinsley's body was recovered.
On 9 July, investigators learned that the DNA from his refuse matched the previous samples.
When police arrived Sunday at Miller's home near Fort Wayne, they asked him if he knew why they were there and he answered "April Tinsley", before admitting to her killing, investigators said in a probable cause affidavit.
As investigators struggled to solve her murder over the years, they were taunted by messages left by the alleged killer.
Last April, to mark the 30th anniversary of April's murder, Janet Tinsley chose to hold a balloon release in a small neighborhood park dedicated to April near her home.
He said he choked April to death so she wouldn't tell police. He also admitted that he had sex with her deceased body and then dumped her body, the affidavit says.
Miller was being held at the Allen County Jail on Monday after being preliminarily charged with murder, child molestation and confinement of someone under 14-years-old, jail records showed.
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