What We Know
Chip Michael Campbell, a 36-year-old Florida resident, has been missing since March 8, 2016, leaving behind an array of unanswered questions and disturbing evidence. He was last seen at his home on Ward Basin Road, Milton, Florida, where he lived with his roommate, Taniya Rios.
That evening, at 10:30 pm, Rios reported seeing Chip for the last time. She returned home the following day to find a scene that suggested alarm: the house was in disarray, with mud tracked across the floor, the refrigerator and side doors wide open, and Campbell’s insulin vials strewn across the kitchen floor. His phone, with the battery yanked out, lay abandoned in the bathroom.
Equally troubling was the fact that Campbell’s dog was left outdoors, a highly uncharacteristic move for a man who typically ensured his pet was safe in a kennel or bedroom. It was the first sign of an abnormal pattern that would become increasingly troubling.
Two days later, on March 8, Campbell was seen between 2:00 and 4:00 pm at a local convenience store, the Circle K at the junction of Stewart Street and Munson Highway, merely three miles from his home.
He seemed disoriented, dirty, and was carrying two backpacks. By the time he left the store, the backpacks were no longer with him, and this was the last time anyone reported seeing Chip Campbell.
Police later found both backpacks, containing an array of items including Campbell’s food stamps card, Social Security card, a copy of his father’s birth certificate, diabetic medical supplies, clothing, food, and survival materials. The backpacks seemed to indicate a man preparing for a journey or an escape. But where and why?
Friends and family of Chip said that Chip’s life was tumultuous leading up to his disappearance. He was hanging out with questionable associates and succumbing to drug use.
Though he attempted substance abuse treatment, he slipped back into his old habits, possibly including methamphetamine use. His health, already compromised by diabetes, spiraled downwards.
In late 2015, Chip met a woman named Tainya Rios through his friend circle. Chip and Tainya hit it off so well that by December or early January, she was living with him.
During Christmas family gatherings, Chip mentioned Tainya. He didn’t share much but said she was an out-of-work nurse. Later, it turned out she wasn’t a nurse. No one knows if Chip was aware of this.
Chip’s friend John noticed Chip changing because of Tainya. Not just his look – dying his hair, wearing different clothes – but his personality too.
In December 2015, Chip got some texts that stressed him out big time. He talked about needing a weapon for protection. He was worried about owing someone money, whether the debt was his or Tainya’s.
The difficulties in Campbell’s life escalated when, in January 2016, he was involved in a car accident at the very Circle K where he would later vanish. The accident led to a “diabetic seizure,” causing him to lose his driver’s license, his job due to lack of transportation, and eventually plunge into financial distress and severe weight loss.
His home, upon inspection after his disappearance, revealed more unsettling details. It had been used as a drug den for some time, and there was evidence of a makeshift meth lab in the attic. This discovery made his family wonder whether drugs played a significant part in his sudden disappearance.
Adding to the suspicion, Taniya Rios, Chip’s roommate, became a figure of interest. She was accused of forging Chip’s father’s name on several checks after his disappearance, leading to her arrest. She fled shortly after posting bail and spent over a year as a fugitive before finally being arrested in California.
Before his disappearance, he spoke of threats and expressed a desire to go off the grid. But his family firmly believes he wouldn’t have stayed silent for this long without assuring them of his safety. Today, Chip’s case remains unresolved, with his disappearance classified as endangered and suspicious.
He was last seen wearing a green camouflage long-sleeved shirt, size L jeans, and white sneakers. Chip Campbell, born on December 18, 1979, stood between 6’0″ and 6’2″ tall and weighed approximately 200 pounds.