Emily Aiken ‘20, Editor-in-Chief
13-year-old Abby Williams and 14-year-old Libby German were both found murdered on Feb. 14, 2017 about a half a mile away from the Monon High Bridge in Deer Creek, Indiana. For this small town, the news was devastating, and the whole community of Delphi was shocked and heartbroken. How could this seemingly safe town have something so tragic happen? The girls were best friends, and many described their personalities as sweet and outgoing. To this day, the murderer has not been caught, but here is what we know so far.
On the afternoon of Feb. 13, 2017, Williams and German were dropped off at the trail near the bridge by German’s older sister, Kelsi German. A few hours later, the two girls were supposed to meet a family member to be picked up but never showed up, and they were reported missing. At this point in time, the Carroll County Sheriff’s Department released a statement that there was no reason to believe there was any foul play or that the girls were in any immediate danger. However, a search began but was called off after dark.
On Feb. 14, the search continued, and at around noon, two female bodies were found about a half of a mile away from the bridge. The identities of the bodies were not revealed until autopsies were conducted on Feb. 15. Later that day, the Indiana State Police and the Carroll County Sheriff’s department held a news conference where they announced that the bodies did in fact belong to Williams and German. They had been murdered.
The police released more information about the suspect when they found pictures a man that could possibly be the suspect and voice recordings taken on German’s phone moments before they were murdered. The picture showed a man wearing a brown hat, a navy jacket, and blue jeans as he is walking down the trail. The muffled sound recording captured the man saying, “Down the hill.” People have speculated that because the voice was so muffled, Libby must of had her phone in her pocket and that she began recording because she felt like she was in danger. “Somebody knows this voice. Somebody has to know who this guy is. We are begging you, begging you to come forward. We need to find out who has done this to our girls,” an anonymous Delphi citizen told Inside Edition. There are other parts to this voice recording as well as information regarding how the girls were murdered that the police are withholding.
The Indiana State Police were able to release a sketch of the man who was seen in the picture. At first, they said that they just wanted to talk with him, but he was later declared as a suspect. He is described as a white male between 180 and 220 pounds with a height around 5’8’’ with reddish hair. There have been many different suspects since 2017; however, all have been ruled out. “Until somebody is arrested, we’re interested in almost everybody,” Superintendent of Indiana State Police Douglas Carter said. Both families were very involved in the case. They are doing everything possible to bring their daughter’s killer to justice. German’s grandfather, Mike Patty said, “This horrible crime has torn a hole in our families that will never heal. It’s the small things that seem to hurt the most. It’s just natural to holler for them to come to dinner, then expect them to come through the door after school; the silence when we don’t hear their voice. I don’t know exactly what happened out there that day, but I imagine there was probably an opportunity for one or both to separate… But those girls loved each other. They were good friends. Neither one of them left each other’s side.”
Since the murders, the reward for information leading to an arrest has reached $225,000, and over 11,000 total tips have come in. Both the Williams and German families have made it very clear that the person responsible will be brought to justice. Until then, this case is still open and tips are still being taken. Someone knows the man in the pictures; someone knows his voice. It is crucial to not let this case be one of the many that goes cold.
Photo courtesy of True Crime Story Time