The Journal Gazette
Wednesday, March 16, 2016 2:53 am

New DNA 'snapshot' offers visual clues in Tinsley slaying

The Journal Gazette

Parabon NanoLabs Inc. of Reston, Virginia, has released a "snapshot profile" it says may provide new clues for police about who killed April Tinsley 27 years ago.

According to a statement from the company, a snapshot profile, a technique in forensic DNA analysis, predicts the physical appearance and ancestry of a DNA source. It uses DNA to create a genetic blueprint for physical traits; a composite image is created from the findings.

On April 11, 1988, first-grader April Tinsley went to a friend's home to pick up an umbrella and never returned home. Three days later, April's body was discovered in a ditch by a jogger in DeKalb County. Her killer has never been found.

"When we became aware of Parabon NanoLabs and learned how the Snapshot DNA Phenotyping Service could assist us in providing investigators with another visual clue in the April Tinsley investigation, it made sense to utilize their expertise," Deputy Chief Paul Shrawder of the Fort Wayne Police Department said in a statement.

If you know anything about the slaying of April, call 1-260-427-1404 or email More information on the case can be found at

For more on this story, see Thursday's print edition of The Journal Gazette or visit after 3 a.m. Thursday.

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