Jannah Theme License is not validated, Go to the theme options page to validate the license, You need a single license for each domain name.

In 2017, an employee of a pharmacy in the state of Indiana organized the murder of teenage girls | National

DELPHI, Ind. (AP) — Authorities have arrested a pharmacy worker in the unsolved murders of two teenage girls in the woods near their northern Indiana hometown nearly six years ago, and said Monday that the suspect lives in their own small community, which is causing concern.

Richard Matthew Allen, 50, was arrested Friday on two counts of murder in the slayings of 14-year-old Liberty Herman and 13-year-old Abigail Williams in a case roiling the Indiana town of about 3,000 people.

The investigation is “far from over,” State Police Superintendent Doug Carter said at a news conference Monday. He encouraged the community to come forward with more information and said that if anyone else “is in any way involved in these murders, that person or people will be held accountable.”

Carroll County District Attorney Nicholas McClelland called Allen’s arrest “a step in the right direction.”

“The alarming thing is that he’s a local guy,” McClelland said.

Evidence against Allen, a licensed pharmacy technician who worked at a local CVS store, was temporarily sealed to jeopardize the “integrity” of the investigation, authorities said. “While I know you’ve all been waiting for the latest details on this arrest, today is not the day,” Carter said.

Libby and Abby’s deaths have been ruled a double homicide, but police have never revealed how they died or described what evidence they collected. Their bodies were found in a rugged wooded area near a hiking trail on February 14, 2017, a day after they disappeared during the school day.

A relative of one of the teenagers dropped them off on a hiking trail near the high Monon Bridge near their hometown of Delphi, about 60 miles (97 kilometers) northwest of Indianapolis. They went missing in the evening after they failed to show up at the place where they were supposed to be picked up.

Libby’s grandmother, Becky Petty, told reporters that Allen once processed photos for the family at the CVS store in Delphi where Allen worked. He didn’t charge them for the photos, she added.

The families always knew the suspect could be “living among us, hiding in plain sight,” said her grandfather, Mike Petty. “That’s why we never stopped searching anywhere because we didn’t know where he was.”

At a press conference on Monday, Becky and her husband Mike wore gray shirts that read, “Today is the day…Justice will be served for Abby and Libby.”

A judge found probable cause to arrest Allen, who pleaded not guilty at an initial hearing Friday, authorities said. “All those arrested are presumed innocent,” Carter said.

Sheriff Bill Brooks of neighboring White County, where Allen is being held, said Monday he did not know if Allen had an attorney. No homicide charges had been filed Monday afternoon under his name in Indiana’s online court.

“We have not closed the investigation,” McClelland said when asked if authorities were investigating others. “At this point, we’re not assuming anything.”

A few days after the murders, investigators released two grainy photos of the suspect a walk on an abandoned railway bridge, which the girls visited, and an Audio recording of a person the suspect is believed to be saying “downhill.”

Authorities released an initial sketch of the suspected killer in July 2017. and then another in April 2019 based on Libby’s cell phone video. Police also released the video in April 2019 shows the suspect walking across the abandoned railroad bridge visited by the girls.

The short video, photos and audio of the suspect came from Libby’s cell phone. Authorities hailed her as a hero for recording potentially important evidence before the murder.

In December 2021, state police announced they were seeking information from people who had contact with someone using a fake online profile to communicate with young girls. State police said investigators determined the profile “anthony_shots” was used from 2016 to 2017 on Snapchat, Instagram and other social media platforms.

In a statement, CVS said the company was “shocked and saddened to learn that one of our store employees has been arrested as a suspect in these crimes. We are ready to cooperate with the investigation in any case.”

“We remain devastated by these murders and our hearts go out to the Herman and Williams families,” the statement said.

The case has been closely followed for years by true crime buffs, who have offered many theories, but Carter urged people not to “subjectively interpret” the case as officers continue to gather information. “If you choose to be critical of our silence, be critical of me, not the front line,” he said.

Cheryl McCollum, who has appeared on television as a case consultant in careless cases, came to the press conference from Atlanta after meeting the Germans at a true crime convention. She praised the authorities for keeping the facts in their vests.

“I think the honesty of this case and the fact that they’re not telling everything they know is important,” Cheryl said. “If you start to show your hand, then, you know, you can spoil everything and you can tell too much… The investigation does not stop at the arrest. It’s really just getting started. So now they’re really going to go to work.”

Callahan reported from Indianapolis.

Arlie Rogers is a staff member of the Associated Press/Report for America Statehouse News Initiative. Report for America is a nonprofit national service program that places journalists in local newsrooms to cover underreported issues. Follow Arlie Rogers on Twitter at https://twitter.com/arleighrodgers


Related Articles

Back to top button