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Arrest made in '17 Delphi murders

Oct. 28, 2022, will be the day Carroll County remembers as “the day.”   On that day, Richard Allen, 50, of Delphi was officially charged with two counts of murder in the deaths of Abigail Williams and Liberty German, 2,086 days since the two young girls’ bodies were found near the Monon High Bridge in Delphi. On Feb. 13, 2017, Williams and German went missing while walking on a trail near the bridge. On Feb. 14, 2017, their bodies were discovered. “There are many dates in a lifetime that you are gonna remember,” Carroll County Prosecutor Nicholas McLeland said during press conference on Monday, Oct. 31, “the dates your children were born, the date you were married, the date you buy a first house, the date Abby and Libby went missing.   “One of those dates was last Friday, Oct. 28, 2022. At that time, we gathered evidence to formulate a (probable cause) that was submitted to the court and a judge did find probable cause for the arrest of Richard Allen. He has been charged with two counts of murder for the deaths of Abigail Williams and Liberty German.” Indiana State Police Superintendent Doug Carter was emotional as he approached the podium. “I do not want there to be any ambiguity or confusion about what I am going to say,” Carter said. “Today is not a day to celebrate, but the arrest of Richard M. Allen of Delphi on two counts of murder is sure a major step in leading to the conclusion in this long-term and complex investigation." Allen was a licensed pharmacy tech who worked at the Delphi CVS store. A 1991 graduate of North Miami High School, he once lived in Mexico, Indiana. In Delphi, he lived just .7 miles from Delphi Community Middle School where Williams and German attended school, and just 1.7 miles from where police say he allegedly instructed the girls to go “Down the hill.”   In speaking to the families of the victims, as well as law enforcement who worked the case Carter said, “I know that today’s announcement will not diminish your resolve and I hope that you have found just a little bit of peace.” Carter, McLeland, remained tight lipped on the details of the case and what led them to Allen. “While I know you are all expecting final details today concerning this arrest, today is not that day – today’s not that day,” Carter said. “This investigation is far from complete, and we will not jeopardize its integrity by releasing documents or information before the appropriate time.   “We in law enforcement 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.”   McLeland asked the community to continue to submit information to the tip lines, which he said would remain open, about not only Allen, but “about any other person that you may have.” “This investigation is still very ongoing,” he said.   Because of the nature of the case, all court documents have been sealed.   “I have been very clear to everybody that per the court order we cannot talk about the evidence that is in the probable cause, or the evidence that is in the charging information,” he said. “Right now is not that day. Today is about Abby and Libby and focusing on them.” McLeland said there would be a court hearing regarding unsealing the probable cause and charging information at a later date. Allen appeared for an initial hearing on Friday, Oct. 28, in Carroll County Superior Court. He entered an initial plea of not guilty. He was moved from Carroll County Jail to the White County Jail where he is being held in isolation until he is moved to a state facility. Police say transferring him to a state facility is for his own safety. Carroll County Sheriff Tobe Leazenby thanked God for justice for German and Williams. “I believe in a God of justice and righteousness,” he said. “Today I believe that the same God has provide us with justice for Abby and Libby.   “I earnestly thank those who prayed for this moment in time. We now move forward through the Indiana criminal justice system, allowing the system to provide its due diligence and process, and providing that the justice that is owed Abby and Libby, their families, and this community.” Williams and German touched the life of Carter, who said he would be forever linked to the families. “What we all experienced proves that together there is nothing that we cannot do, but more important giving of ourselves, all of us, matters more than what we could ever receive,” he said. “Abby and Libby, though in death, have had a profound effect on so many of us on how we live, and as important, who we all should be.”   Allen is scheduled for a hearing on Jan. 13, 2023. In the latest development, Carroll County Judge Benjamin Diener has recused himself. The Indiana Supreme Court is in the process of appointing Allen County Judge Fran Gull, as special judge in the case. Neither Gull nor Diener can comment on the case, according to Kathryn Dolan, Indiana Supreme Court chief public information officer.