Police officially announce arrest in Delphi murders case

Published: Oct. 31, 2022 at 10:00 AM EDT
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DELPHI, Ind. (WNDU) - Indiana State Police officially announced an arrest Monday in the 2017 murders of 13-year-old Abby Williams and 14-year-old Libby German.

Abby and Libby disappeared during a hike on Feb. 13, 2017 near the Monon High Bridge Trail in Delphi. Their bodies were discovered in the woods near that trail a day later.

Shortly after they were tragically murdered, the Indiana State Police and Carroll County Sheriff’s office created the Delphi Double Homicide Task Force, which encompassed federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies. Police say this task force has worked diligently the last five and a half years to ensure this crime did not go unsolved.

Abby Williams and Libby German
Abby Williams and Libby German

On Wednesday, Oct. 26, detectives with the Delphi Double Homicide Task Force took Richard Allen, 50, of Delphi into custody at the Indiana State Police Lafayette Post for the murders of Abby and Libby. Allen was then taken to the Carroll County Jail.

On Friday, Oct. 28, 2022, Allen was formally charged with two counts of murder and taken to the White County Jail, where he is currently being held without bond.

Richard Allen
Richard Allen(Indiana State Police)

After more than 2,000 days of asking for patience, police are asking for a bit more. Police said during Monday’s news conference that Allen’s case remains sealed and further details regarding the case will be revealed at a later date.

“You all have an innate desire to subjectively interpret then report what you think,” said Indiana State Police Superintendent Doug Carter. “We in the law enforcement realm cannot and you should never allow us to talk about what we think concerning facts, but rather discuss and share at the right time what it is we know.

“While I know you are all expecting final details today concerning this arrest, todays not that day,” Carter added. “This investigation is far from complete and we will not jeopardize its integrity by releasing or discussing documents or information before the appropriate time.”

“I know it’s frustrating,” said Carroll County Prosecutor Nick McLeland. “I know everybody wants to know more information. I understand it’s frustrating, but my goal is to maintain the integrity of this case.”

Officials did take the opportunity to recognize the dedication of the members of the task force working on the case.

“I really believe that Abby and Libby would be proud of you for standing strong, even in the face of immense pressure and perpetual criticism,” Carter said. “Some of these individuals have postponed retirement, passed a promotional opportunity, have dedicated personal time away from their families, given up nights, weekends, and holidays all while in the pursuit of accountability for Abby and Libby.”

Police say they are still taking tips regarding this case.

“This investigation is still very ongoing,” McLeland said. “We’re keeping the tip line open, the tip e-mail open. We encourage everybody to continue to call in tips not only about Richard Allen, but about any person you might have.”

Allen has already made his initial court appearance. A hearing to determine if court documents will remain sealed is to be determined. Police say a public notice will be given in advance.

Meanwhile, Allen’s pretrial Hearing is set for Jan. 13, 2023 at 9 a.m. and his trial is scheduled to begin on March 20, 2023 at 9 a.m.

According to our sister station WTHR in Indianapolis, Allen is a pharmacy technician and is in good standing with the state of Indiana. CVS Health confirmed Allen’s employment and released the following statement:

Officials did take the opportunity to recognize the dedication of the members of the task force working on the case.

“I really believe that Abby and Libby would be proud of you for standing strong, even in the face of immense pressure and perpetual criticism,” Carter said. “Some of these individuals have postponed retirement, passed a promotional opportunity, have dedicated personal time away from their families, given up nights, weekends, and holidays all while in the pursuit of accountability for Abby and Libby.”

To watch the full press conference, click on the video below:

Here’s a timeline of the lengthy investigation into Abby and Libby’s deaths:

FEBRUARY 13, 2017- The girls go missing. A Snapchat picture of Abby walking across the Monon High Bridge is the last time they are heard from.

FEBRUARY 14, 2017- The girls’ bodies are found and police announce they’re investigating the deaths as a double homicide.

FEBRUARY 15, 2017- Authorities release a photo of a man walking across the bridge where the girls had been the day of their deaths. It’s something police have because 14-year-old Libby snapped a picture.

(WNDU)

FEBRUARY 19, 2017- The man in the photo is named as the prime suspect in the murders.

FEBRUARY 22, 2017- Police release audio from a cell phone recording of the suspect saying “down the hill”.

MAY 14, 2017- A celebration of life is held for Abby and Libby at Delphi High School.

JULY 17, 2017- Police release a sketch of the suspect they hope someone will recognize.

FILE - This composite sketch released July 17, 2017, by the Indiana State Police shows the man...
FILE - This composite sketch released July 17, 2017, by the Indiana State Police shows the man they consider the main suspect in the killings of teenage girls Liberty German, and Abigail Williams who disappeared from a hiking trail near their hometown of Delphi on Feb. 13, 2017. State Police are to make an announcement about the investigation into the 2017 killings of the two girls found dead on a hiking trail. State police say Superintendent Doug Carter will discuss how the investigation has gone in a "new direction" during a Monday April 22, 2019 news conference in Delphi. (Indiana State Police via AP, File)(AP)

FEBRUARY 2018- No one is behind bars by the one year anniversary of the murders.

FEBRUARY 2019- Police reiterate that the case is not cold as they continue to investigate on the two year anniversary of the murders.

APRIL 22, 2019- Police release a new sketch that they say more accurately represents the person they believe killed the teens. The first sketch showed a person in his 40s to 50s, but the new sketch shows a man believed to be in his 20s to late 30s. Police also release a video of the man walking across the bridge and announce that they believe the suspect to be local to Delphi.

(Source: Indiana State Police (custom credit) | Source: Indiana State Police)

FEBRUARY 2020- Police believe they are one puzzle piece away from making an arrest at the three year anniversary of the murders.

FEBRUARY 2021- Police say they receive tips every day, but release no new updates on the four year anniversary of the murders.

SEPTEMBER 2021- Investigators move to a new space where they continue to work on the tips they receive as the reward grows to $325,000.

DECEMBER 2021- Indiana State Police request information from anyone who communicated, met, or attempted to meet with the person behind the fake online account “Anthony_Shots”.

Kegan Anthony Kline
Kegan Anthony Kline(Miami County Sheriff's Office)

OCTOBER 28, 2022 - Indiana State Police announce a news conference regarding a major update in the investigation. It is revealed ahead of time that Richard Allen, 50, of Delphi has been arrested.

OCTOBER 31, 2022 - Indiana State Police officially announce that Allen has been charged with two counts of murder in the case.

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