Indiana police announced the arrest of a suspect Monday in the 2017 murders of two teenage girls in Delphi, Indianaa case that has puzzled the online crime community and detectives for years.
Richard M. Allen, 50, of Delphi, was arrested on two counts of murder in the February 2017 deaths of 13-year-old Abigail “Abby” Williams and 14-year-old Liberty “Libby” German, reports said. Indiana State Police Superintendent Doug Carter on Monday.
“Today is not a day to celebrate,” Carter said, noting that the arrest is “a major step towards a conclusion in this complex and long-running investigation.”
Williams and German disappeared while hiking in their hometown of Delphi, about 60 miles northwest of Indianapolis.
They were dropped off at an abandoned railroad bridge on February 13, 2017, to walk around and hang out, according to the police. But when it was time to be picked up from the area, they never showed up.
Their bodies were found on February 14, 2017 in a wooded area near the historic Delphi Trail, 800 meters uphill from the bridge.
On Wednesday, Oct. 26, detectives from the Delphi Double Homicide Task Force arrested Allen and he was formally charged with two counts of murder on Friday, Indiana State Police said in a statement. Release. He is currently being held without bond at the White County Jail.
Charging documents sealed
Carter said limited details will be released about the arrest to protect the integrity of the case and the investigation. Officials did not explain what evidence led them to arrest Allen.
He explained that the probable cause affidavit and charging documents have been temporarily sealed because “this investigation is far from complete.”
“Since the murders of Abby and Libby 2,086 days ago, the daily investigative team has worked tirelessly and is certainly worth mentioning today,” Carter said on Monday.
Officials said at the press conference that Allen had his first hearing and pleaded not guilty on a preliminary basis. A trial date is set for January 13, 2023 and a trial date is scheduled for March 20, 2023.
“As per the court order, we cannot speak to probable cause evidence or prosecution information,” Carroll County District Attorney Nicholas McLeland said. “Right now is not that day. Today is Abby and Libby focusing on them.
McLeland did not respond to questions about how long Allen was a suspect.
Allen was a CVS employee who did not charge Libby’s family for handling the photos
After the press conference, Libby German’s grandparents revealed to reporters that Allen worked at a local CVS where he processed photos for Libby’s family.
Becky Patty, Libby’s grandmother, nodded when asked about reports that Allen had been processing photos for the family at the store and not charging them for it. She said, “That’s right,” without going into details.
CVS acknowledged Allen was an employee in a statement Monday saying, “We are shocked and saddened to learn that one of our store employees has been arrested as a suspect in these crimes. We stand ready to cooperate with the investigation. police in every way possible.”
“As members of the Carroll County community, we remain devastated by these murders and our hearts go out to the German and Williams families.”
Libby’s grandfather, Mike Patty, said when the family heard the accusations “it was a bit bittersweet”.
“I just know there’s another job, another hill ahead of us, but we’re up for the challenge and we’re going to keep going. We’re not going to stop,” he said.
When asked if he had any words for the suspect, Patty replied, “No, I’ll save that for when I see him face to face.”
One year survey
For years police have been working to find the girls’ killer and previously said the attacker may have close ties to Delphi, a town of around 3,000 people.
Carter said in 2019 he believed the suspect was “hiding in plain sight.”
Police previously released two sketches of a suspect.
They also posted grainy photos of a person walking over an old railroad bridge the girls visited on their hike with audio of a man saying “Down the hill” taken from the cellphone of Liberty.
The photo appeared to depict a white male wearing blue jeans, a blue coat/jacket and a hoodie, who police said was believed to be a suspect in the homicides.