The judge overseeing the high-profile Delphi murders case in Indiana on Wednesday unsealed a cache of previously unseen court filings revealing hundreds of pages containing new details about the allegations being levied against accused murderer Richard Allen.
The documents, which come from both prosecutors and defense attorneys, were originally sealed in compliance with a December 2022 gag order prohibiting public comment on the facts of the case. Special Judge Fran C. Gull on Wednesday signed an order which unsealed the vast majority — 118 of 137 — of those documents after speaking with both sides on the matter. The request to unseal the documents was initially filed by attorney and podcast host Kevin Greenlee.
“Counsel agree with the Court that the public interest is best served by transparency, but that certain pleadings should remain sealed,” Judge Gull wrote in an order issued Wednesday. Nineteen documents remain under the seal order.
While some pivotal documents, such as the unsealed probable cause affidavit and witness lists, remain under seal, the newly released trove of documents provided court-followers with a first-look at details regarding Allen’s alleged jailhouse confession as well as the victims’ cause of death.
Allen is facing two counts of murder in the twin 2017 slayings of Abigail “Abby” Williams, 13, and her friend Liberty “Libby” German, 14, whose bodies were discovered in a wooded area just off of the Delphi Historic Trails system.
Abby and Libby vanished while walking the Monon High Bridge Trail near Delphi, Indiana, on Feb. 13, 2017. The trail traverses an abandoned stretch of what was once the Monon Railroad and crosses an old trestle over a small river or creek. The girls were found dead the next day in an area near the trestle and their deaths were determined to be homicides.
The most shocking of Wednesday revelations is prosecutors’ claim in an April 20 filing that Allen “admitted that he committed the offenses that he is charged with no less than five times while talking to his wife and his mother on the public jail phones available at the Indiana Department of Corrections.”
“On April 3, 2023, Richard M. Allen made a phone call to his wife Kathy Allen. In that phone call, Richard M. Allen admits several times that he killed Abby and Libby,” the motion states. “Investigators had the phone call transcribed and the transcription confirms that Richard M. Allen admits that he committed the murders of Abigail Williams and Liberty German. He admits several times within the phone call that he committed the offenses as charged. His wife, Kathy Allen, ends the phone call abruptly.”
After the call, prosecutors alleged that Allen suddenly began acting erratic for about two weeks.
“Allen was wetting down paperwork he had gotten from his attorneys and eating it, he was refusing to eat and refusing to sleep. He would go days on end refusing to sleep,” the motion states. “He further, broke the tablet that he used for text messages and phone calls. He went from making up to 2 phone calls a day as of April 3, 2023 to not making any phone calls at all. To date, Richard M. Allen still has not made a phone call since April 3, 2023.”
Allen’s attorneys, Brad A. Rozzi and Andrew J. Baldwin, have asserted that his incriminating statements are unreliable due to his diminished mental capacity. Rozzi and Baldwin on April 6 filed a request to have Allen transferred out of Westville Correctional Facility, claiming that he was being held in conditions “akin to those of a prisoner of war” in order to frustrate his ability to defend himself at his upcoming trial. That request was granted by Judge Gull two weeks later.
Another key detail to the case is the cause of death for the two young victims, both of whom appear to have been stabbed to death.
“Autopsies of the girls ruled their deaths as homicides and their wounds were caused by sharp object,” one of the documents filed by prosecutors states.
In addition, prosecutors also wrote that “articles of clothing from the girls were missing from the scene, including a pair of underwear and a sock.”
Allen’s trial is currently slated to take place from Jan. 8, 2024 to Jan. 26, 2024.
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Richard Allen confessed to Delphi murders 5 times: State
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