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The man accused of murdering two teenage best friends in Delphi, Indiana, in 2017 allegedly admitted to his wife in a jailhouse phone call that he killed the teen girls.
Prosecutors allege that Richard Allen, 50, confessed to his wife during a phone call from jail on April 3, 2023, recently released court documents show. Allen’s wife abruptly hung up after the confession, the court documents say.
“Investigators had the phone call transcribed and the transcription confirms that Richard Allen admits that he committed the murders of Abigail Williams and Liberty German,” prosecutors alleged. “He admits several times within the phone call that he committed the offenses as charged.”
Prosecutors previously said in court that Allen “confessed five or six times.” His defense attorney, Bradley Rozzi, acknowledged that Allen had made “incriminating statements” but said those comments couldn’t be trusted due to his client’s deteriorating mental health.
Allen appeared in court wearing a yellow prison jumpsuit and looking gaunt. His defense attorneys argued that he has made “inconsistent” statements since he was arrested and said they were brought on by the stress of his arrest and imprisonment. He added that Allen’s mental and physical health has been deteriorating since his arrest.
The latest court documents also say that best friends Abby Williams and Libby German died from a knife attack, even though the unspent bullet is being used to tie Allen to the murders. Allen’s defense team has filed a motion to suppress ballistics evidence from the trial, NewsNation reported. A previously unsealed probable cause affidavit stated that police found an unspent round near the girls’ bodies. The bullet was said to come from Allen’s gun, but forensic firearms analysis has come under fire recently as unreliable. Allen’s defense attorneys have challenged the evidence, and a hearing on their motion has been pushed back.
A trial has been set for early next year.
The probable cause affidavit revealed that Allen admitted to being on the Indiana hiking trail where German and Williams were last seen alive and their bodies were found on February 14, 2017. Video surveillance from the Hoosier Harvestore, a machine repair company in Delphi, and an unspent bullet found at the scene, all point to Allen as the killer, police say in the affidavit.
Definitively proving an unspent bullet came from a particular gun is not as simple as the affidavit makes it seem, according to Stephen Gutowski, a certified firearms instructor and reporter who founded The Reload.
“The forensic techniques used by crime labs to match specific guns to specific bullets have come under heavy scrutiny in recent years,” Gutowski told The Daily Wire. “So, I think it’s important to examine claims like this with a healthy dose of skepticism. The idea you could match a mark on the rim of a casing to a specific gun’s extractor seems dubious to me.”
The affidavit also highlights the unreliability of witness testimony. Allen said he witnessed three juvenile females while walking the trail, and those three described a man they saw walking alone, believed to be Allen. One of the girls said the man she saw was wearing “like blue jeans a like really light blue jacket.” Another said the man wore a black hoodie, black jeans, and black boots. The third girl described the man as wearing a blue or black windbreaker jacket and baggy jeans.
Witnesses also described seeing a vehicle parked at an old Child Protective Services building near the trails. One witness said he saw a purple PT Cruiser or small SUV backed up to the building. Another witness described it as possibly being a “smart” car.
Allen owned two vehicles in 2017, a 2016 black Ford Focus and a 2006 gray Ford 500, according to the affidavit. Investigators saw a car resembling Allen’s Ford Focus traveling in front of the Hoosier Harvestore store. They also suggest the witness descriptions of the vehicle “are similar in nature to a 2016 Ford Focus.” A Ford Focus is described as a compact vehicle, but it is not small or distinct enough to be confused for a “smart” car. It is also not large or distinct enough to be confused with a PT Cruiser or an SUV.