ARMADA (WWJ) – Police have released a composite sketch of someone they want to talk to in the case — a tipster saw a person on the trail where April Millsap had been walking her dog. She was later found murdered in a drainage ditch last Thursday night.
Armada Police Chief Howard Smith says a text saying April thought she was going to be abducted did come from her cell phone.
But police won’t comment further on that aspect of the crime.
“Closest friends, the people who you have been talking about, have been very cooperative, we have worked with those people – that is part of the investigation – an open part of the investigation so I’m not going to say a bunch more about that but I can tell you that they’ve been highly cooperative,” said Smith.
Smith says they haven’t ruled anyone out in her murder, but do not believe her family is involved at this point.
“I think with the characteristics of this person in this particular crime there was very different that other crimes – was the fact that she was walking her dog Penny out there on the trail, the dog was there, the dog stayed there during in the commission of the crime. This person that may match this profile may familiar with the dog or may be very familiar with dogs in general.”
Police in northern Macomb County confirmed the body found in a wooded area near a nature trail is that of a missing 14-year-old Armada girl — and that she was murdered.
Armada Police Chief Howard Smith said April Dawn Millsap’s mother reported her missing after the teen didn’t return home from walking her dog, which she does nearly every night.
April’s body was discovered along the Macomb Orchard Trail around 8:25 p.m. Thursday near Fulton and Depot roads, north of 33 Mile Road in Armada.
MSP Ltn. Mike Shaw told WWJ’s Mike Campbell it was the dog that pointed to the girl’s location, 15 to 20 feet off the trail in a drainage ditch.
“Two joggers were going around the trail and a dog actually alerted that there was something amiss in the wood line,” Shaw said. “When they went to investigate what it was, that’s when they found the body.”
The Macomb Orchard trail is a paved hike and bike trail that runs 24 miles from Shelby Township to Richmond.
Anyone who was in a van like the one described or who knows someone who has that type of van is asked to call 877-616-4677. Tips may also be submitted online at http://www.michigan.gov/michtip.