DELPHI — An arrest has been made in the investigation into the 2017 murders of Abigail Williams and Liberty German, sources tell WRTV.
The name of the arrestee has not been confirmed, but sources say the individual appeared in court Friday morning.
Indiana State Police plans to provide an update on Monday. The announcement will take place at 10 a.m. at Delphi United Methodist Church located at 1796 North US-421.
The Feb. 13 2017 killings of Williams, 13, and German, 14, in Delphi has drawn international attention.
What happened between the time they were dropped off and the next morning — when their bodies were found less than a mile away — remains a mystery. But photos and video taken from Libby's cellphone have given investigators a glimpse into what may have happened in their final moments.
The girls' bodies were found on the property of then Ronald Logan, who has since died.
Although no official suspect has ever been named in connection with the girls' deaths, police have questioned several men over the past five and a half years and many of them have become the center of internet conspiracies.
The most recent update in the case was announced back in April when Indiana State Police announced they would be expanding their search for "anthony_shots" profiles on additional social media platforms.
Kegan Kline, a man who police say was using the Instagram and Snapchat account with that username, was arrested in August 2020.
According to a probable cause affidavit, Kline was interviewed by a state police investigator and an FBI special agent and questioned in connection with the case. No details connecting him to the murders have ever been released.
EVERYTHING WE KNOW
Indiana State Police have interviewed hundreds of people, from possible witnesses and persons of interest to anyone who may have had information about suspicious activity on the day the girls went missing.
More than 50,000 tips have been called in or emailed to investigators during the past five years.
Indiana State Police Superintendent Doug Carter has made it his mission to find the girls' killer and during an interview earlier this week, he told WRTV's Rafael Sanchez that he believes they will identify the person responsible while he is still superintendent.
"Three years, two years 11 months," Carter said. "It could be today. We continue to move in a positive direction."
The reward for finding Libby and Abby's killer remains over $325,000.
An International Obsession
Finding the Delphi killer has become an international obsession.
Libby and Abby's story has been told across the country on television and podcasts and debated by people around the world in chat rooms and social media groups online.
The girls' stories have been shared on "In Pursuit with John Walsh", "Dr. Oz" and "Nancy Grace," and their families have made appearances at CrimeCon and other conventions to keep the case in the national spotlight.
Self-proclaimed web sleuths have unofficially connected multiple men to the crimes and prompted investigators to put out pleas to the public to stop sharing images of random men online.
"Please STOP posting side by side pictures of people you think did this," the Carroll Co. Sheriff's office posted on social media after the second sketch was released. "You are ruining innocent people's lives... Before posting a side by side, imagine that is your son, brother or father,"
Investigators say speculations, rumors and comparisons can actually do more to hinder the investigation than to help it.
Are There Any Suspects?
Investigators have released images, video and even a short voice clip that they say were taken by Libby that day during what they call "criminal activity." State police have said that unknown man is responsible for Libby and Abby's death — but despite the evidence left behind by Libby and two sketches from potential witnesses in the area, investigators have yet to find the man responsible for their murders.
In the past five years there have been multiple names connected to the Delphi investigation and at least two have been named a "person of interest" in the case. State police say they do not "clear" suspects while the investigation is open, but after looking into each person investigators have "moved on" in the case without ever naming them as a suspect.
In December, ISP asked the public to help them find the person behind a fake account that was being used to lure young girls.
Indiana State Police say the profile named "anthony_shots" was used from 2016 to 2017 on social media applications, including Snapchat and Instagram.
The profile used images of a well-known male model and portrayed himself as being extremely wealthy and owning numerous sports cars. The creator of the fictitious profile used this information while communicating with juvenile females to solicit nude images, obtain their addresses and attempt to meet them.
Police say the man in the photos is not a person of interest, but they are looking for information about who created the profile and used his images.
"It generated a tremendous amount of interest and the leads we have received have been very helpful that's as far as I can go on that particular issue," Carter said.
The case isn't cold yet, Carter said, because no one has given up on the investigation.
“I’ve said all along, as long as I’m in this role and breathing, we’re not leaving the City of Delphi in Carroll County, Indiana, we’re just not,” Carter said during an interview in 2018. “And if we get to the point where we have exhausted the leads that we currently have in the queue then we’re going to start all over again.”
Carter says television has given us an unrealistic expectation about how cases like this work. Just because a detective on TV can solve a crime in 45 minutes doesn’t mean that's how it works in real life.
In real life, Carter says things aren’t always as they appear, detectives don’t reveal their entire hand when they’re investigating a case, and a case isn’t cold just because there hasn’t been an arrest.
“I’m not going to ask you or your viewers to understand that. I don’t want them to understand evil or to live with that each and every day,” Carter said during that same interview. “But I think people come to that conclusion based on time, not necessarily based on what we know and what we’ve even shared with everybody.”
When an arrest is made, which Carter said he is optimistic it will happen, he said 80 to 100 people will need to be assigned to the case to review all calls and evidence connected to the case.
"It will be a monumental task and something we've never done as an agency in the state before," Carter said.
Below is a detailed look at everything we know that has been released by investigators so far in the investigation.
Feb. 13, 2017
A family member dropped the girls off at The Monon High Bridge that afternoon with a plan to pick them up a few hours later. When that pickup time arrived, the girls were nowhere to be found.
Calls to Libby’s cell phone went unanswered and eventually straight to voicemail.
First, the family began to search. When they were still missing later that afternoon, family members contacted the sheriff’s department for help.
Sheriff Leazenby told RTV6 that evening that they had no reason to believe the girls were in danger. At the time, crews thought the girls had simply gotten lost on the trails and were unable to find their way back.
Throughout the evening dozens of volunteers joined the search for the girls.
The only real clue of their location was a photo Libby had snapped of Abby walking along the bridge and posted to her social media.
As the sun went down and the temperature dropped the search was officially suspended sometime after midnight, although some family and friends did continue to search into the overnight hours.
Tragedy Near Deer Creek
The search for Libby and Abby resumed on Valentine’s Day morning, Feb. 14, 2017.
Crews widened the scope of their search as soon as the sun came up, wandering further from the abandoned railroad tracks and into wooded areas below the bridge and along Deer Creek.
The official search had barely resumed when one of the search teams made a gruesome discovery.
The bodies of Libby and Abby were found on the back end of a private piece of property less than a mile from where they were dropped off the day before.
No details surrounding how the girls were found or their cause of death have ever been released.
“I can’t say there’s not a threat to the community,” Indiana State Police Sgt. Kim Riley told RTV6 at the time. "We have not caught the person yet. Is the person still in the community? We don’t know.”
The evidence released publicly since Libby and Abby were murdered remains minimal.
The key evidence in the case is a video that was taken by Libby, likely in the moments before her death.
Although the full context of what took place on that video has never been released, Libby German has been heralded a “hero” for having the presence of mind to begin recording.
The full video and audio have never been shared, but investigators say it was taken during "suspected criminal activity."
Investigators have released two grainy images from that video that shows a man we’re to believe was behind the girls on that bridge, a short clip of that man walking, an audio recording of a man — presumably the same one — saying “Guys. Down the hill” and two sketches from possible witnesses in the area the day the girls were murdered.
Another key piece of the puzzle that investigators have released is that they believe the man who murdered Libby and Abby was either from Delphi or was familiar with Delphi either because he works there or has other connections.
“I’ve walked across the high bridge myself. It’s 65-70 feet off the river deck. It hasn’t had a train on it since 1929," Carter said during a press conference on April 22, 2019. "The ties are starting to rot. It sways back and forth and it’s not something you can just jump on and walk straight across if you’ve never done it before. I decided I was going to take the riverbank going back, I didn’t. That wasn’t the first time he’s been on that high bridge, my opinion, again that’s my opinion. I experienced it and I kept a piece of the high bridge and I’ll carry it with me until we find out who this is."
The Two Grainy Photos
Police released the images they say were taken straight from Libby’s cell phone, on Feb. 15, 2017 — the day after the girls’ bodies were found.
Both images, shown below, depict the same white man wearing blue jeans, a blue coat/jacket and a hoodie.
Days after Libby and Abby were found dead, police officially named that man a “person of interest” in their murders.
The context surrounding the images, which were stills from a moving video, has never been given.
The Two Audio Clips
A brief audio clip, which police have always said was just a small clip of what they have from Libby’s phone, was released on Feb. 22, 2017.
The audio of a man’s voice saying “down the hill” was seconds long and was released free of video.
Police have only said that the video it came from captured the man telling the girls to go “down the hill” during possible “criminal activity.” They have never elaborated further on that description.
More than two years later, on April 22, 2019, Indiana State Police released a new piece of audio that is a slightly extended version of the initial clip and includes the word “Guys” followed by “Down the Hill.”
Although the audio may appear to be a different voice, Indiana State Police were clear when they released it that the extended clip was all the same person.
"Please keep in mind that the person talking is one person and is the person on the bridge with the girls" Carter said. "This is not two people speaking. Please listen to it very, very carefully."
Listen to that extended clip below.
The Video Clip
At that same April 22 press conference, Indiana State Police also released never-before-seen video of “bridge guy” that was taken by Libby on the day that she died. The video shows the suspect walking along the bridge behind Libby and Abby.
“When you see the video, watch the person’s mannerisms as they walk,” Carter said when they released it. “Do you recognize the mannerisms as being someone that you might know?”
Carter also said because they know where the man was walking on the bridge his walk is not natural because of the spacing between the ties and the deterioration in that area of the bridge.
Watch the video clip below.
The Two Sketches
Five months into the investigation, Indiana State Police released their first sketch and description of a suspect.
That first composite sketch was created after police said they received information from witnesses who were in the area at the time Libby and Abby went missing.
At the time, the suspect was described as a white man between 5-feet 6-inches tall and 5-feet 10-inches tall, weighing 180 to 220 pounds with reddish-brown hair and an unknown eye color.
In that first sketch, shown below, detectives say the man’s hat was changed to make his facial features more recognizable.
A second sketch was released at the press conference held on April 22, 2019.
That sketch, which appears to be of an entirely different person, is now believed to be the main person of interest in the murders of Libby and Abby.
Along with the new sketch, police also updated their description of the suspect to be a man between 18 and 40 years old, who could appear much younger than he actually is.
"When we decided that, through the information we received, that we were going to release the second sketch I don’t believe the individual knew we were going to do that. So, it was really, really important. I think he was probably there and/or watching, simply because he thought we were on the wrong path," Carter said when the second sketch was released.
The sketches were composed from witness accounts of two separate individuals who were in the area on the day of the murders. Indiana State Police later revealed that the second sketch, released more than two years after the girls were killed, was actually the first sketch they had drawn up.
They also say they now believe that the second sketch is a more accurate depiction of the suspect, although the actual suspect may likely be a mix between both sketches.
"The sketch isn’t a photograph. A sketch is a sketch and that’s really important for everybody to understand," Carter said. "I believe that the individual, when we catch him, it will be a combination of those two.”
During the press conference in April 2019, Indiana State Police also requested the public's help to identify the driver of a vehicle that was parked near the Monon High Bridge on the day Libby and Abby went missing.
Carter says a vehicle was parked at the old CPS/DCS Welfare building in Delphi on the east side of County Road 300 North, next to the Hoosier Heartland Highway between noon and 5 p.m. February 14, 2017. No details about that vehicle were released, including make and model, color or license plate number.
“We believe you are hiding in plain sight,” Carter said. “For more than two years…. We likely have interviewed you or someone close to you. We know that this is about power to you, and you want to know what we know – that one day, you will.”
So far, no additional information has been released and Indiana State Police have still not identified the vehicle or a possible person who may have been driving it.
The Tips Keep Coming
Indiana State Police say they still receive new tips about Abby and Libby’s murders almost daily.
Every one of those tips and potential leads that are called in and emailed to the Delphi tip lines — more than 40,000 so far — is vetted by investigators.
Every tip received is entered into an FBI system called “Pyramid.” That system stores information like names, descriptions and motives so it can be cross-referenced with other tips locally and across the country to find any possible connections.
The process is always working, comparing tips received about the Delphi murders with hundreds of other cases and tips. Investigators say they have worked a number of tips and leads that have come directly from that system or the tip line, although they say both have been able to connect dots they had no idea existed.
How You Can Help
Keeping track of those tips is a major undertaking. Investigators say the more information a tipster can give them, the better, because the more information they can enter into the system – the more potential connections can be made and checked.
Investigators have shared insight into what makes a good, solid tip.
That includes things like:
- Suspect Nam
- Date of Birth or Approximate Age
- Physical Description (i.e. height, weight, hair color, eye color)
- Specific Address or Location Last Seen
- Specific Vehicle Descriptions (i.e. license plate, year, make, model, color)
- Specific Reason for Tip (i.e. Why could they be the suspect?
- Motivation for Crime
- Connection to Delphi
Tips can remain anonymous.
The reward for information leading to the arrest of the Delphi killer is over $250,000.
Tip Information Contacts
Tip Line: (844) 459-5786
Indiana State Police: (800) 382-7537