It’s been four years since a young man was found dead inside a burning car on Escanaba’s south side.
But Escanaba Public Safety Detective Darin Hunter has not forgotten, and has not given up on finding the person or persons responsible for the death of 26-year-old Adam Campbell.
It was at 3:30 in the morning on April 9, 2011, when Escanaba Public Safety responded to a routine call to put out a car fire in an alley in the 300 block of South 19th Street. When they looked inside the vehicle, officers were horrified to find Campbell, dead. Hunter told the Radio Results Network on Monday that the investigation has never ended.
“We’ve done countless interviews and taken sworn depositions. I want to say that, off the top of my head, I have at least 35 sworn depositions,” Hunter said. “We’ve had a number of items submitted to the MSP (Michigan State Police) Crime Lab for analysis, looking for any type of forensic evidence that we could use to help solve this case.”
But so far, there have been very few forensic clues to help investigators get closer to pinpointing who caused Campbell’s death. The best evidence Hunter has so far is surveillance video inside downtown Escanaba bars that Campbell visited that night.
“I was able to, along with the help of other detectives in the area, pretty much ‘timeline’ Adam’s last hours. What I’m missing, though, is that very critical LAST hour of Adam’s life. Obviously, that last hour contained his death.”
Hunter, and the entire public safety department, are hanuted by this kind of a crime, which, fortunately, happens very infrequently in Escanaba.
“It’s one of those that’s been etched in my mind because I know that, after not only talking with Adam’s mom, and Adam’s (now deceased) dad, they want some closure,” Hunter said. “It’s something that not only the mother needs, his daughter needs, the community needs closure as well.”
And so Hunter is making this appeal to the public, as the four-year anniversary of Campbell’s death passes.
“I’m looking for somebody to step up, that may have been involved, or may have been told what happened directly by the persons involved,” an emotional Hunter told RRN News Monday afternoon. “I need for that person to dig down deep. I can understand if they’re scared. I can understand if they’re worried. But if it was someone in your family, or your own child, I would hope that you’d want that person to come forward.”
Technically, this is not a “murder” investigation, although Hunter calls Campbell’s death “suspicious” and foul play is certainly believed to have been involved. There is a reward of up to $6,000 being offered for information that leads police to whoever caused Campbell’s death.
A special Facebook page called “Justice for Adam Campbell” has been up ever since his death, and the Escanaba Public Safety Department has a Facebook page where you can send private messages with information. You can also call 786-5911 and give information that way, and you can remain anonymous.