Accused Delphi killer Richard Allen is seeking bail

CARROLL COUNTY, Indiana — Attorneys representing interests accused person slayings of Abby Williams and Libby Herman near the Monon High Bridge on the banks of Deer Creek east of Delphi in the winter of 2017 filed for bail for their client Monday.

Attorneys Bradley Rosie and Andrew Baldwin, appointed last weekthree weeks after Richard Allen was arrested and charged with two counts of murder, to ask that the 50-year-old from Delphi be released “on recognizance or in the alternative a reasonable bond”.

“(T)he defense has obtained and reviewed probable cause affidavits, which at the time of this motion were closed,” said the motion, filed a day before Superior Court Judge Elena Fran Gall will hear arguments on whether to retain stamp on the PC that led to Allen’s arrest. “(n)either the evidence of guilt is clear and the presumption of guilt is not strong.”

The petition asks for bail.

Allen was arrested on Oct. 26, and his initial hearing was held without public notice two days later, when District Judge Benjamin Diner granted prosecutor Nicholas McClelland’s motion to seal the PC without a full explanation.

In announcing Allen’s arrest on Oct. 31, McClelland noted that the homicide investigation remains open.

Indiana State Police Chief Doug Carter recently told FOX59 News that the PC “stands on its own” and its release will not jeopardize the investigation.

“I think the state might be trying to protect somebody,” said Robert Turner, an attorney not associated with the Delphi case but who began practicing law after retiring as the Indianapolis police deputy chief of investigations and director of public safety. “It has to be more than the identification of a witness. It must be a danger or threat.

“Or it could just be some information that could be embarrassing.”

Dan Byron, an attorney representing the Indiana media, told FOX59 News that he filed a motion with the court on Monday and is ready to argue Tuesday morning that under the Indiana Open Records Act, the public interest is best served by releasing the PC.

Turner said McLelland would have to convince Judge Gall otherwise to keep the PC seal he requested.

“Public policy is open records,” he said. “It’s politics, so it’s a bad argument. He must argue why the court should not follow that policy, and there must be some overriding interest that overrides the open records law. That’s what he has to argue. A threat to someone’s life. Other investigations that may reveal other suspects who may be on the run. It should be very important to repeal the law that says about his open records “.

At this point, the public, and perhaps Allen and his attorneys, do not know on what basis the prosecutor convinced Judge Diener, who gave up on himself from the case to seal the affidavits, and both sides may be limited in what arguments they can make in open court both for and against McLeland’s original motion.

“Obviously, the parties are going to be limited in what they can say even during a dispute because they may also disclose some information that may be critical or confidential,” Turner said. “The court has to see that there is an issue here and there is some public interest that outweighs the open records law.”

Judge Gall would have the option of upholding the sealing motion, releasing the PC or ordering McLeland to redact certain confidential information and release the document.

“A judge can say, ‘While I understand you’re trying to protect the person’s identity, please offer me a redacted version of the PC that can exclude all the necessary information about the person’s identity,'” Turner said. “The state can’t withhold evidence, so whatever they present in terms of redacted probable cause must necessarily include all the evidence they need, possibly protecting the individual.”

Other issues that could come up during Tuesday’s hearing could include a request for an order barring public comment on the case or a request by Allen’s attorneys to protect their client’s right to a speedy trial within 70 days.

Turner explained who might be covered by the gag order and why the late appointment of public defenders last week could affect Allen’s constitutional right to a speedy trial.

“In order to have an effective gag order, you have to have access to information and generally the people who can do it, the prosecutor, the defense attorney, anyone who works with those two parties, and any witnesses they can question , ” he said. “They shouldn’t expect him to face a speedy trial without a lawyer. They should at least allow him to have a lawyer before he decides on the path of his trial.”

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