Person of interest used deceased man’s debit card at different businesses during missing person case

Derrick Perkins used Nathan Millard’s debit card at two businesses, police said. (Image of Perkins: Baton Rouge Police Department; image of Millard: Texas EquuSearch)

Police say that the man they sought for questioning in Nathan Millard’s disappearance and death used the 42-year-old’s debit card at two businesses in the area of South Baton Rouge, according to documents obtained by WBRZ. Derrick Perkins, 45, was allegedly recorded by surveillance cameras on Highland Road amid Millard’s disappearance, officers said.

“No evidence of internal or external trauma noted,” said the East Baton Rouge Parish Coroner’s Office in a statement obtained by Law&Crime. “Final autopsy results pending further studies including toxicology testing. Cause of Death and Manner of Death are pending completion of the final autopsy report.”

Officers did not say whether or not they believe Perkins played some sort of role in the man’s mysterious disappearance or death. They did, however, arrest him for probation violation, criminal damage to property, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, and three counts of access device fraud.

As Millard’s missing person case was gaining national attention in late February and early March, Perkins spray-painted the bumper of a stolen 2004 Toyota Camry, took off the rear bumper sticker and switched the licensed plate in an attempt to “disguise” the vehicle, police claimed in reported records. The vehicle was reported stolen on Feb. 3, they said.

Cops reportedly said the vehicle Perkins was last seen driving had been discovered burned on Monday. His address of record is less than a mile from the lot where Millard’s body was found.

Capt. Kevin Heinz said in a press conference last week that surveillance video from local businesses tracked Millard’s whereabouts in his final known hours. For example, the man wound up at a bus station, the captain said. A security guard offered to help him because she felt he was out of place, though he did not appear to be in distress. She offered to get him a ride or call the police for him. Millard declined and left on his own accord, Heinz said.

Describing the totality of this video evidence, the captain said Millard appeared to be at those locations under his own power, and he did not appear to be in distress. Heinz said there appeared to be nothing happening that was criminal in nature.

Police said, however, that someone left Millard in the vacant lot in the 2900 block of Scenic Highway.

“And look, we’ll ask, whoever put him there, if something happened and there was a moment of panic, come forward,” Heinz said. “We just want to know what happened to him.”

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