Haddon Heights Patrolmen Daniel Hunt and Daniel Kinkler stopped a van that was obstructing traffic on the Black Horse Pike and ended up finding two missing girls from Washington, D.C.
By Matt Skoufalos | January 9, 2018
Haddon Heights Police Chief Bruce Koch always tells his officers: if something doesn’t feel right, dig a little deeper.
On Saturday, two of them did just that at a routine traffic stop, and helped reunite a pair of missing girls with their families.
Haddon Heights Patrolman Daniel Hunt stopped to check out an unoccupied U-Haul van that was partially blocking traffic in the 200 block of the Black Horse Pike Saturday evening.
He caught up with the driver of the vehicle not far away, who provided false documents when asked for ID.
Patrolman Daniel Kinkler arrived to back Hunt up, and the officers met with five more people who had been traveling in the vehicle.
The group said they were visiting family in New York, but a search of the vehicle revealed nothing that would corroborate that story.
It did, however, uncover drug paraphernalia; accordingly, four men were charged with disorderly persons offenses and released.
As the investigation developed, Hunt and Kinkler also learned that the other passengers in the van—11-year-old Timyra Calloway and her 17-year-old cousin, Meisha—had been reported missing from Washington, D.C. just a day earlier.
The Calloways have since been reunited with their families.
The men involved in the case did not face additional charges in Washington, D.C., according to Metropolitan Police Public Affairs Specialist Rachel Reid.
Reid said authorities “have no reason to believe human trafficking was involved,” and thanked Haddon Heights police for their efforts.
Haddon Heights Police Captain Michael Scardino credited Hunt’s and Kinkler’s “basic investigative skill” with leading to the recovery of the missing girls.
“These are little things that happen every day, and this is how you find people who need to be taken into custody,” Scardino said.
“You had a U-Haul van typically used for moving large furniture,” Scardino said. “When [Hunt] didn’t find those things in the van, and the individuals can’t give them a good story as to where they’re going and who they are, [he] need[ed] to investigate further.”
Koch said Kinkler had leaned on that same nuts-and-bolts detective work during a routine sobriety check on New Year’s Eve, and ended up recovering an assault weapon.
“The officers did a wonderful job, and they were very thorough in their investigation,” Koch said. “They had that sixth sense and looked into it a little bit further.”
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