Lawman Leaves Retirement to Search for Girl's Killer
05/04/2014 AT 01:00 PM EDT
"I had worked homicides before and I was bothered by the idea that it was an 11-year-old girl and the person who did this was still out there," Bedell, 70, tells PEOPLE. "This guy needed to be located."
A year after the murder, at the request of the village manager, Bedell took the position of Constantine's police chief – making solving the murder a personal mission – and now Bedell believes he's finally one step closer to reaching his goal.
On April 18, Raymond McCann, a former Constantine reserve police officer and close friend of Parrack's family, was arrested on suspicion of perjury, as investigators released a lengthy felony complaint with a long list of what police are alleging as lies McCann told investigators about the case.
McCann has not been charged with the girl's murder – her body was found in the village's cemetery – though the investigation continues as Parrack's family amps up the pressure on McCann. "Tell the truth," the girl's mother, Jo Gilson, said at a recent press conference. "Get it over with."
As the first major development in seven years, police hope that he'll provide information that'll crack the case – and Bedell wants to be there when it happens.
The chief was so invested in the case that he organized a fundraiser to purchase a headstone for Parrack, who was buried in a family plot in the nearby town of White Pigeon.
The problem is that time is running out: Bedell's retirement is set for May 30 – though the date is not set in stone.
"I'm sure they will want me to stay, and I probably will if we're getting close," Bedell says. "I want to retire with a conviction. I want to know who killed her, as does everybody in this village and everybody in the state. It's an 11-year-old girl. We need to know [who killed her]. We need to get this person off the streets."
For more about the Jodi Parrack murder mystery pick up this week's issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands now.