Found Deceased IN - Abigail (Abby) Williams, 13, & Liberty (Libby) German, 14, The Delphi Murders 13 Feb 2017 #127

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MistyWaters

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Over the years I’ve read several true crime books in which a suspect escapes detection, even though interviewed by LE. Additionally, he has a wife or GF giving him a solid alibi. After a couple of years, a breakup or divorce has her retract that alibi, and LE renews their focus. Ultimately he is proven to be the murderer.

Good example. But what if the wife said she wasn’t home that afternoon? Only then he’d become a possible suspect on the list of who LE continues to investigate, considering there had to have been a valid reason for LE to be interested in what the husband was up to that day?

If LE investigated possible suspects only on the basis of say-so/biased alibis from spouses or friends I think that’d be a very shoddy manner of investigation. Generally those types of alibis are not considered “solid” because they can never be proven to be true without additional collaboration.

JMO
 

wary

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If this statement was significantly directed toward a guilty party, LE has had over 3 years to strongly focus their glare on any one suspect, yet they’ve never once said they’re close to an arrest. Quite the opposite actually.

RL may’ve been one who lied as I doubt he immediately admitted to driving his truck to the county landfill site while his licence was revoked. There’s many reasons someone might lie about an alibi aside from attempting to hide the fact they’re guilty of committing two murders. Such as not wanting to readily admit what they were doing at the time if it was something they shouldn’t have been doing or somewhere or with someone they shouldn’t have been. JMO

My understanding is that the police made it clear that no minor crime they stumbled across during their investigation would be ignored. I think that was a mistake.
 

MistyWaters

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I agree. I think clearing alibis early in an investigation helps thin the suspect pool and points to certain people who might need to be looked at further. But lack of an alibi won’t convict someone as you point out.
We’re almost four years out in this case. I’m sure LE is constantly rechecking things including alibis, but I think alibis are way down on that list now except for new POIs. Just my thoughts.

If anything went wrong in the investigation, I think it was the huge volume of tips received in the first couple of weeks and the rush to interview both the tipsters and possible suspects asap.

If the art of criminal investigation only involved alibis, LE could’ve requested POIs line up at a clerks counter to state what they were doing the afternoon of Feb 13th. The entire interview process is also critical, using the application of interrogation techniques that LE homicide investigators are trained to conduct, which can lead to identifying POIs early on.

My fear is during the rush to process tips other officers who were not skilled in this area were also involved due to the sheer volume. The second time around the element of surprise during an interview is lost and a possible suspect gains the advantage. JMO
 
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Taking all of these comments into consideration, or even aside from these comments...do you believe the second sketch does in fact look very much like any one known individual? We can't name people, but I'm just curious if any of you look at that sketch and feel strongly that it represents, as much as a sketch can, any specific person who is a potential suspect.
I do. Sketch #2 almost like a photo. Nothing more to say atm, Marzipan. ;)
 

Diddian

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I have only been following this case a short time and have been going through the threads (incl. Media, Maps, and Timeline) here and on Reddit, where there is a pretty decent timeline, as well as listening to some of the well-known podcasts about the case, and I still have plenty to get through.

So far (because of the two different sketches that were both based on witness observations on the day the girls disappeared and the fact that there were two victims, both athletic and very intelligent, and at least one of them as strong as most adults), I strongly suspect that more than one perpetrator was involved and that BG's role may have been to locate and corral the girls and direct them toward the location of a hidden perpetrator (who looks like the second sketch), who was the primary actor in the murders and the one who solicited the help of BG. This would also mean that the murders were planned and that at least one of the girls was specifically targeted by an adult who was paying close attention and somehow learned they would be at Monon High Bridge trails that day (by observing his child's social media, or through secondhand information from someone who did that or who otherwise gained the information).

Both Abby and Libby were strong academically and both were athletic and participated in multiple sports (volleyball and softball for Abby; volleyball, soccer, and softball for Libby). Libby had even taken at least one forensics-related course offered by Purdue University. They also both seemed to maintain a decent level of situational awareness and were aware when they were in the presence of potential risk. Given these characteristics, they were among the last one would expect to suffer such a horrible fate as happened on Feb 13, 2017. But, I keep thinking that maybe it was the fact that they WERE exceptional that they became targeted and ultimately became victims.

I wonder about the possibility that the girls were murdered to eliminate one or both of them as rivals who might have been in the way to someone else's pursuit of a spot on a varsity or elite (volleyball?) sports team or admittance to or a scholarship to Purdue. I know this is farfetched, but since the Wanda Holloway case, it seems a remote possibility that must be at least considered. As WH demonstrated, it occasionally happens that some parents will do even the unthinkable to better the odds of their own child's success and they will even go so far as to solicit the help of someone they expect to be willing to participate if given adequate motivation (money, sexual access to the victims, blackmail based on some kind of past offense). If the perpetrator believed he was eliminating strong competition for a substantial scholarship, there could be a financial motivation as well.
 

Diddian

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everything has to be considered, anything is possible. is it known if either child was in the running for any scholarships? they seem to too young to be getting offers for college.
I personally don't know. I'm not from the area and am only recently becoming familiar with the case.

Where I live, many high-achieving students start taking college classes early (Running Start) even though they are technically enrolled as high school students. Some actually start taking classes at the college campus. Libby's family have said all her classes were "high achieving" classes, so I presume that if Indiana offers similar programs, she'd have been a strong candidate for them.

Regardless, it's been my experience that many students start preparing for college acceptance and scholarship potential as soon as they enter high school. They take classes geared toward presenting themselves as well-rounded high achievers who are academically advanced, skilled at athletics, and service providers or leaders. They are aware of valued scholarships and college sports programs and they prepare for them. They are also well aware of how they stack up relative to their peers in the area. Often, the parents are also aware.

At one time Becky Patty was asked what she thought about one of the sketches. Within her reply, she said (paraphrasing): "You look at the photo. You look at the sketch and try to figure out how old they are. What do they say in science... for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. So you look and try to figure out what the action that caused this... but you can't do that with evil. There is no rationalization for this act. What would be the motivation, I don't know what would motivate this. I don't know..., because it's evil. It's deceiving. It comes to kill and steal and destroy."

What if the action was simply that the girls were good and they were accomplished, and that represented a threat to someone else (someone capable of choosing evil) because the girls would be rewarded for those characteristics before somebody else would. So their reaction was to do something the rest of us consider unthinkable, because for them, violating the rules of living peaceably and respectfully with each other gave them an advantage they wanted.

I think LE should at least consider the possibility that the very things that most would view as the best in either or both Abby and Libby might have been viewed by someone else as threats because those characteristics would grant either or both Abby and Libby access to something that someone else might then lose (a spot on a varsity or elite team; the likelihood of winning a state championship or not; college admission; a particular scholarship). This could be someone in the Delphi community, or it could be someone in more distant communities, perhaps competitors of the high school Abby and Libby would attend.

This is speculation on my part.

Edited to quote Becky Patty more accurately.
 
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Peppery

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everything has to be considered, anything is possible. is it known if either child was in the running for any scholarships? they seem to too young to be getting offers for college.

True, everything should be considered, but this ‘elimination of competition’ seems too far fetched to me. The girls were approximately halfway through 8th grade, not in high school yet. Yes, they were well-rounded, high achievers but in most schools there is a core group of kids just like them. I don’t know if in their area, or if some colleges begin recruiting in 8th grade but I highly doubt it. But sure, it’s possible. I agree with what LE has said, that BG is the murderer and worked solo. I personally think this was a sexually motivated crime. Whether there was actually SA or not, I think that was his main drive and the murders were secondary for him. Moo
 

somequestions

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Taking all of these comments into consideration, or even aside from these comments...do you believe the second sketch does in fact look very much like any one known individual? We can't name people, but I'm just curious if any of you look at that sketch and feel strongly that it represents, as much as a sketch can, any specific person who is a potential suspect.

I do not think the sketch looks like any one known individual. Why does it have to be a known individual? Why does it have to be anyone who was out on the trails that day? The whole point behind selective attention is that people sometimes do not even see things that are right in front of them. This person could have walked into the Monon High Bridge Trail area and walked out, with or without passing witnesses, and no one may ever remember he was even there. So they certainly are not going to have a good description of what he looks like. I tipped in a person to LE early on in the investigation and the second sketch looks nothing like the person I tipped in. So I guess I was wrong too.

I think it surprises people that something like that could actually happen. Reality starts to make people realize that the police may actually have nothing in terms of a description of this person who killed Abigail Williams and Liberty German. The only thing they may have is a grainy video description from a 14 year old girl.

I do not even consider the second sketch because I think it is so far off and not even close. When the case is solved I will be very surprised if the killer looks like the second sketch. I will be surprised if he is a young man at all.

I disregard the sketches. I think that is the police just trying to throw things out there to see if they can identify people they sketched early on in the investigation. They have no idea whether either sketch is the man they are actually looking for(as the killer). I focus on the video because I think the video is how this case will be solved.
 

Falling Down

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I am not sure how deep the creek was at that time, but from personal experience I can tell you that I have personally canoed and kayaked on the Mount Fork River in Hochatown, Okla., in water not much more deep than a foot in some places. The kayak would be better suited for shallow water based on weight. Sometimes when I tandem canoed with my dad, we would drag on lower areas of the river due to weight. But I can see a quick escape via open top kayak and those kayaks do not weight much either so a person would be able to carry it. I have carried one by myself before. MOO and from my own experience

I've stood on the creek bed twice, once in August of '17 by the foot/suspension bridge in Riley Park, and last month I stood on it west of the MHB, in the gorge. The height of the creek varies considerably throughout the year, and naturally where the creek narrows it gets fairly deep at times, like in town before it dumps into the Wabash River, and by the Wilson Bridge east of the MHB.

Here is the page for the U.S. Geological Survey gage which is within feet of Wilson Bridge:

USGS Current Conditions for USGS 03329700 DEER CREEK NEAR DELPHI, IN

In spots near the MHB it might be knee-deep, and in others near the bridge waist deep much of the time. Where the creek gets pretty narrow, like in town, it could get over six feet deep and flow rather strongly after hard rains.

Like Wildcat Creek and other creeks in this area, Deer Creek acts a drain for the surrounding countryside, draining into the Wabash River.

JMO
 

sunshineray

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As @MistyWaters said, Leazenby is almost certainly referring at least partly to RL when he says that people have lied to LE about their alibis in this investigation.

LE in this case were criticized early on for going after people who, it was discovered in the course of the investigation, committed other totally unrelated (sometimes arguably minor) crimes. It was felt by some that this created a lack of trust in fully opening up to LE with all that the public knew.

For the record, I don't necessarily think that LE made a mistake in doing this, not do I personally think that things like driving with a revoked license is minor when DUI has been involved, but this is a criticism that has been leveled.

I agree, as others have said, that there may be multiple reasons for not being completely forthcoming with police in an investigation. Not just other unrelated criminal activity but things like covering up an unrelated affair in a personal relationship, covering up work-related misbehavior. It would be smart to come clean to police in these situations in order to not get in trouble for an even bigger situation, but a certain portion of people always think they can outsmart police.

There is verified LE investigator on these boards who said that in investigations that go on as long as this one, police procedure is that alibis are never checked just once for people who are integral to the crime. Procedure is to go back multiple times checking because after a year or two people's stories start to change as relationships and circumstances shift. IMO
I agree about RL most likely being one of those "people" who lied about an alibi. I also realize that some at the Delphi trails area that day could have been breaking other laws, most likely drug offenses.

When AW recently confirmed the fact that a large number of people were in that immediate area, it just makes me think about Sheriff Leazenby's words (spoken only a month after the murders) in a different light.

I will go as far as to say that the people who need to speak up about what they know to be truth are in that group there that day. AJMO
 

sunshineray

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Just my thoughts but I think LE doesn’t put as much emphasis on alibis as we might think. An accused is considered innocent until proven guilty and all that, so when charges are laid and the case goes to trial the prosecution is required to offer far more evidence as to why the accused is guilty than lack or doubt of an alibi. If that wasn’t the way it is, it’d be an example of the exact opposite - the accused having to prove he’s innocent through an alibi.

Not having a verifiable alibi or even lying about an alibi is not proof of guilt in the absence of other evidence to convict an accused of committing the murders. I can think of a few trials where the suspect was found guilty even though the defence called a witness who claimed they were with the suspect and were nowhere near the murder scene at the time of the murder but there was strong incriminating evidence including testimony to indicate the accused indeed was present and committed the crime. The defence witness may’ve lied or their recollection might be faulty as say-so alibis can neither be proven or disproven. Then it’s up to the jury to weigh the totality of the evidence and testimony put forth.

JMO
But a lie is a lie and likely is not ever just a one time thing. Lying about an alibi is a deception. It's up to investigators to flesh out the cause and effect of it. These are my thoughts and I respect yours.
 
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I agree about RL most likely being one of those "people" who lied about an alibi. I also realize that some at the Delphi trails area that day could have been breaking other laws, most likely drug offenses.

When AW recently confirmed the fact that a large number of people were in that immediate area, it just makes me think about Sheriff Leazenby's words (spoken only a month after the murders) in a different light.

I will go as far as to say that the people who need to speak up about what they know to be truth are in that group there that day. AJMO
Maybe, BG passed out a round of drugs for those present, before the crime already, in a patronizing but chummy way, himself taking drugs as well. Then he disappeared from the crowd, maybe changing his clothes/outfit. One day later, when the girls were found, nobody expected him to be THE double murderer. Because he had been so very generous the day before and he was a person with a certain reputation, people didn't mention his name to LE. - Speculation only.
 
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I do not even consider the second sketch because I think it is so far off and not even close. When the case is solved I will be very surprised if the killer looks like the second sketch. I will be surprised if he is a young man at all.

I believe in LE/FBI and that they had a cogent reason to release the second sketch in 2019, finally. The video shows BG very blurred, interpretable in mannny different ways (as we did here on WS). IMO, probably BG controlled the video himself and was sure, nobody would be able for BG's identification. He was right so far.
 

sunshineray

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39-year-old man booked into Livingston jail after kidnapping two teens, sheriff says

Not certain of this guys height and weight, but the article caught my eye. You may have already talked about this and I missed it. If so, ignore.
There's a twitter profile picture (i think he may have two twitters) that's a bit further away than the other. The hairline and face shape looks simular, with a clean shave, to the second sketch but that's at a distance.

This guy is from Louisiana, so not local to Delphi area. Anything is possible though.

God bless those brave girls, they got away. Makes it sink in even more how horrible what happened to Abby and Libby was, just so tragic.
 
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There's a twitter profile picture (i think he may have two twitters) that's a bit further away than the other. The hairline and face shape looks simular, with a clean shave, to the second sketch but that's at a distance.

This guy is from Louisiana, so not local to Delphi area. Anything is possible though.

God bless those brave girls, they got away. Makes it sink in even more how horrible what happened to Abby and Libby was, just so tragic.
He has the wrong haircolor and googly eyes - I think, it's not him.
-.-.-
The poor girls were very brave, even forcing a crash with the car. Grandiose!
 

Yemelyan

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I have only been following this case a short time and have been going through the threads (incl. Media, Maps, and Timeline) here and on Reddit, where there is a pretty decent timeline, as well as listening to some of the well-known podcasts about the case, and I still have plenty to get through.

So far (because of the two different sketches that were both based on witness observations on the day the girls disappeared and the fact that there were two victims, both athletic and very intelligent, and at least one of them as strong as most adults), I strongly suspect that more than one perpetrator was involved and that BG's role may have been to locate and corral the girls and direct them toward the location of a hidden perpetrator (who looks like the second sketch), who was the primary actor in the murders and the one who solicited the help of BG. This would also mean that the murders were planned and that at least one of the girls was specifically targeted by an adult who was paying close attention and somehow learned they would be at Monon High Bridge trails that day (by observing his child's social media, or through secondhand information from someone who did that or who otherwise gained the information).

I'm having some trouble making the connection between your theory that there were two perpetrators and your second conclusion (which I bolded above) that it then follows that the murders were planned and at least one girl specifically targeted. I would ask, can two people make a decision that if the right opportunity arose, they might try to abduct random children/teens for a criminal purpose? One example that sticks in my mind, because I read the victim's brother's account of the crime, is the murder of Jonathan Kushner in Florida. In this case there were two offenders who together decided that they would abduct and sexually torture a child. According to the confession, they planned to abduct a girl if the right situation came about but "settled" for a boy on that particular day because the opportunity was a good one (he had biked alone to a store to buy candy). The account of their decision was given in the victim's brother's book, "Alligator Candy."

Both Abby and Libby were strong academically and both were athletic and participated in multiple sports (volleyball and softball for Abby; volleyball, soccer, and softball for Libby). Libby had even taken at least one forensics-related course offered by Purdue University. They also both seemed to maintain a decent level of situational awareness and were aware when they were in the presence of potential risk. Given these characteristics, they were among the last one would expect to suffer such a horrible fate as happened on Feb 13, 2017. But, I keep thinking that maybe it was the fact that they WERE exceptional that they became targeted and ultimately became victims.

I don't know whether this detail makes a difference to your theory - to me it seems significant - but the "forensics-related course at Purdue University" was not a regular college-level class where she would have attended with college students or even perhaps a college professor. I looked into this at the time and Purdue offered through their school of education a variety of science and engineering "experiences" or one-day workshops for middle school students, one of the popular ones was called Super Saturday and you could enroll your kid in a variety of science-themed programs. Due to COVID these have all been canceled for the current year so there is less information online now than there used to be, but IMO it looked like her "forensics class" would have been a one day or maybe weeklong drop-off day program that coincided with a school holiday like winter or spring break. It was a fun activity for science-minded young students but it wasn't a college course and she wasn't mingling on campus with the general Purdue student body IMO.

I wonder about the possibility that the girls were murdered to eliminate one or both of them as rivals who might have been in the way to someone else's pursuit of a spot on a varsity or elite (volleyball?) sports team or admittance to or a scholarship to Purdue. I know this is farfetched, but since the Wanda Holloway case, it seems a remote possibility that must be at least considered. As WH demonstrated, it occasionally happens that some parents will do even the unthinkable to better the odds of their own child's success and they will even go so far as to solicit the help of someone they expect to be willing to participate if given adequate motivation (money, sexual access to the victims, blackmail based on some kind of past offense). If the perpetrator believed he was eliminating strong competition for a substantial scholarship, there could be a financial motivation as well.

As you pointed out, @Diddian, adults killing female teens for a financial motivation is quite rare when compared to other motives such as sexual assault or attempted sexual assault. If this was my theory I would collect as many examples of solved cases where teens were killed for known financial gain as I could and compare it to this one. Were the victims killed inside or outside of their home? Were they abducted first? Were they male or female? Were the victims involved in activities that had to do with drugs or sex work? And then I'd look at the Delphi case and see if any of the patterns fit.
 

minazoe

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this is very interesting...it does show how someone can seek to control two girls with a gun. trying to drive and shoot two girls who are beating the crap out of you in an enclosed space is another thing entirely. the fact that he tried to kidnap these 2 girls is very interesting though. VERY. also his hairline is interesting. But he is not a suspect so far. These girls did what I did when abducted..they fought and they won. BRILLIANT. sadly Abby and Libby weren't so lucky out in the open. I wish we could know what happened to them. mOO
 
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