Delphi Murders: Defense claims evidence withheld, detectives lied

Posted at 5:04 PM, October 6, 2023


DELPHI, Ind. (Court TV) — The man accused of killing two teenagers whose bodies were found in the woods off of a popular trail has filed a new motion alleging there is additional evidence that investigators worked to hide evidence that points to a different killer.

Richard Allen is charged with murdering Abigail “Abby” Williams, 13, and Liberty “Libby” German, 14, who disappeared while walking the Delphi Historic Trail on Feb. 13, 2017. The girls’ bodies were found the next day, less than half a mile from the Monon High Bridge.

Officers escort Richard Matthew Allen

Officers escort Richard Matthew Allen, out of the Carroll County courthouse following a hearing, Tuesday, Nov. 22, 2022, in Delphi, Ind. Allen was charged last month with two counts of murder in the killings of Liberty German, 14, and Abigail Williams, 13. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

Allen’s attorneys filed what is known as a “Franks motion” on Sept. 18, arguing that evidence obtained from a search warrant should be inadmissible during his trial because a detective lied to obtain it. The 136-page motion outlined 92 reasons the girls’ murders could not have been committed by a single person and instead pointed to members of a white nationalist group known as “Odinism.”

RELATED: Richard Allen’s attorneys claim Odinists ‘sacrificed’ Delphi teens

In a new motion, filed on Tuesday, Allen’s attorneys said that they received additional discovery evidence from the prosecution as recently as Sept. 27, and that among that evidence is additional support for the defense theory that practitioners of Odinism were the killers.

In the initial motion, Allen’s attorneys said evidence at the scene, including the deliberate staging of the girls’ bodies with sticks, pointed to symbolism used in Odinism. The motion also said that detectives had incorrectly relied on a Purdue professor who did not believe Odinites were involved in the murders, citing testimony at depositions.

graphic representation of bodies with red sticks

A graphic representation of the pattern of sticks laid out by Abby Williams and Libby German’s bodies, as described by defense documents. (Court TV)

When the defense asked investigators to identify the Purdue professor, prosecutors told them as recently as Sept. 6, they were unable to determine who they were, according to the motion.

“However, on September 19, 2023 (the day after the Franks memorandum was filed, where it was revealed that the Purdue professor was ‘missing’) miraculously (a detective) found the professor … and interviewed him.”

READ MORE: Delphi Murders: Everything you want to know

The defense said that after watching the taped interview with the Purdue professor, identified as Dr. Jeffrey Turco, they believe investigators sought to suppress him because of a number of statements, including that Turco “stated that after viewing the pattern of the sticks on the girls that ‘it was given’ that someone was trying to replicate a Germanic runic script. … Furthermore, Dr. Turco stated that although he could not necessarily interpret these runes, that the stick configurations were pretty clearly runic and that he ‘could certainly imagine that this was somebody’s idea that when you do human sacrifice you carve runes.'”

Prosecutors responded to Allen’s initial motion, describing it as “colorful, dramatic and highly unprofessional” as well as “not completely true.” The prosecution has also accused Allen’s attorneys of using these motions to get around the gag order, in an attempt to plead their case to the media.