Liberty German was 14 years old and Abigail Williams was 13 at the time this happened. They were best friends and spent a lot of time together over the years.
The day they disappeared was February 13, 2017.
The girls didn’t have school that day because they had an extra snow day to use and they had a sleepover the night before.
The pair asked their families if they could go to the Monon High Bridge trail to hang out. This seems to be a popular landmark for locals to walk on – it was built in 1891 and is a high, decrepit railway bridge. It is 63 feet from the ground and is said to be Indiana’s second highest bridge. Some articles I have read say that the bridge is a Delphi ‘treasure.’
Abby and Libby got permission to goto the bridge, as long as they were able to get a ride there and back. This was at around noon on Feb 13.
It was an unusually warm day, in the 50s. The girls were only wearing sweatshirts when they went out to the bridge.
TIMELINE OF EVENTS:
At 1:45p.m. Libby’s sister drops girls off at Monon High Bridge. Libby’s father, Derrek German, was to pick them up in 1.5-2 hours after running errands and would call Libby – there was no set pickup time.
2:07 p.m. Liberty posted a photo of Abigail on Snapchat.
2:?? p.m. The girls took a video of a man on the bridge. We will refer to him as Bridge Guy (you may see this abbreviated to BG on some platforms) It was taken with Libby’s front facing camera over her shoulder as he approached them.
*3:11 p.m. Derrek calls Libby – no answer.
*3:13 p.m. He calls again – no answer.
*3:30 p.m. Derrek looks for the girls toward the bridge at first, but then goes the other way.
3:45 p.m. Another woman is on the bridge taking photos around this time (one photo tagged as 3:45) but states she did not see Libby or Abby.
*4:00 p.m. Mike Patty (Liberty’s grandfather) is contacted at work.
*After 4:00pm family starts arriving to look for girls.
5:20 p.m. They’re reported missing to law enforcement.
5:45 p.m Amber Alert sent out for missing girl in Gary, Indiana believed to be in EXTREME DANGER. (unrelated but important b/c this would have ISP’s IMMEDIATE attention during critical times while the search for Libby and Abby was ongoing and lasted overnight.)
A large search effort involving volunteers and multiple law enforcement agencies gets underway. They scour the area in an attempt to find Liberty and Abigail.
6:20 p.m. Sunset in Delphi, Indiana on February 13th, 2017.
7:01 p.m. *Scanner* – Delphi fire – Requested at station for briefing on 2 missing juveniles
8:01 p.m. *Scanner* – Camden Fire – Manpower at station for a detail
8:22 p.m. *Scanner* Called back to regroup
11:17 p.m. Repeat of Amber Alert sent out for Gary, Indiana girl
11:20 p.m. *Scanner* Requested back to station
Midnight-ish: Carroll County Sheriff Tobe Leazenby says in a news release that there is no reason to suspect foul play or to believe the girls are in immediate danger. The biggest concern is exposure to the elements.
We are now at the next day – Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2017
Temperature- High: 49°F | Low: 32°F
1:36 a.m. BOLO (“Be On Look Out”) for Abby & Libby goes out.
The search resumes with teams of volunteers and police officers. The dogs did not arrive by the time the girls were found, nor did the dive team. There was a 3 hour helicopter-based search that did not result in finding the girls because it was directed East of the bridge.
7:26 a.m. Amber Alert for Gary Indiana girl repeated
7:28 a.m. *Scanner* All Delphi Fire units out with the search party requested to be en route to station.
7:41 a.m. Sunrise in Delphi
9:04 a.m. *Scanner* Delphi Fire Command Deputy Coles needs a pickup truck removed.
10:37 a.m. *Scanner* Search is in effect.
10:56 a.m. *Scanner* Medic 3 Ambulance request East side of Heartland. Staging in that area.
11:03 a.m. *Scanner* Informing Medic 3 to be on standby in case something happens.
11:45 a.m.-12:00p.m. Searchers find a black Nike shoe that belonged to Libby before finding two bodies shortly after. They were found about a half-mile away from the bridge.
Apparently the scene was so horrific and disturbing that many officers had to seek counselling and still have nightmares about it. Something about the scene was ‘different’
12:11pm. *Scanner* Delphi Fire – Command to call a cell phone from dispatch – likely going off the air once bodies were found.
2 p.m. LE announces the discovery of two bodies and that foul-play is suspected. Identities are not confirmed at this time.
4 p.m. Delphi Community Schools Superintendent Gregory Briles releases a statement saying that the bodies found in the afternoon are those of two missing Delphi Community Middle School students despite no confirmation from police.
9:24 p.m *Scanner* Notification that (Names Removed) would be arriving in Grey Chevy to retrieve Orange Chevy that is parked at the cemetery.
10:31 p.m. *Scanner* Asked for confirmation that units would secure cemetery area – dispatch confirmed. Notified all units preparing to secure scene for evening.
10:37 p.m. *Scanner* Barriers at 575 N and 300 are moved to north side of roadway.
On Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2017, autopsies were conducted on the bodies at around 8am.
10 a.m. Sgt. Kim Riley with ISP says the autopsies are complete but declines to confirm the identities or discuss a suspect/POI. *Advises parents to keep a close eye on their children and monitor their whereabouts.
12:07 p.m. *Scanner*
-“The road is closed, you would just go ahead and we’ll be able to park in the field just past the cemetery there’s a gate. There are several troopers here. Just immediately past the cemetery make a right in that field. “
-“Can we get all of our gear back there, as far as the dive truck and Lafayette trucks?”
-“Affirmative looks to be pretty solid, some other trucks are back there.”
-“Pass gate running at back of cemetery we came out yesterday.”
-“We’re just turning out (can’t understand), will be there in a few min.”
12:12 p.m. *Scanner*
“Bring the dive truck up this way, we’ll maybe back it in or just pull it in alongside the DNR vehicle.”
2:41 p.m. *Scanner*
“I’m at the crime scene. It’s cordoned off. Are there supposed to be people up there?”
“I don’t have any idea. I don’t see the FBI personnel down here right now, so I don’t know. At this point just act like they’re not in play and keep them at bay if you can.”
2:43 p.m. *Scanner*
“Just make sure you stand by that item and we’ll try to figure out how we’re going to collect it up right now so just standby.”
3 p.m. ISP & Carroll County hold a news conference confirming that the bodies found are Liberty and Abigail. They say the case is being investigated as a double homicide. *They say they don’t believe there’s any immediate danger to the community.*
3:03 p.m. *Scanner*
– “Go ahead.”
– “We have some underwear with an evidence bag so just stand by there, they’re on the way, they’re coming through the water by the way.”
– “Clear, at least 2 people with evidence so far.”
– “So you found more, what’s the second thing you found? Cause I’m only seeing one evidence bag.”
– “I have a cigarette butt in the water that’s less than 2 or 3 days old.”
– “Okay, copy.”
03:16 p.m. *Scanner*
“We need 3 more evidence bags. If somebody could bring them.”
People forget this is a BIG crime scene. It’s not just where the bodies are found. It’s the bridge, and the area between the bridge where their bodies were found which included a creek. So there was a lot to go through.
Plus, hundreds of people were out there searching for the girls earlier leaving their own tracks and DNA that has to be filtered out.
7 p.m. ISP releases a photo of a man reportedly “walking on the trail around the time of the girls’ disappearance.” Police say they “want to talk to the individual” but stop short of calling him a suspect.
On Thursday, Feb. 16, 2017 at 6 p.m. Police set up a tip line for anyone with information in the case to call. At that time, they had already had over 250 tips called in.
6:45 p.m. Funeral arrangements are set for 14-year-old Liberty German.
On Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017 a public visitation for the girls is held at Delphi Community High School.
(Stephanie – talk about what Abby was wearing and the rumors from the memorial)
Police revealed on Sunday, Feb. 19, 2017 that the man photographed walking along the trail around the time the girls’ disappearance is a SUSPECT in their deaths.
On Monday, Feb. 20, 2017 Police announced they were conducting a statewide manhunt for the man in the photos and tell Hoosiers to continue to provide information via the hotline set up for tips in the case.
A Hoosier is a native of Indiana – for anyone wondering.A press conference was held on February 22 (Wednesday) at 10 a.m. They revealed that Liberty recorded video of the suspect on her cell phone. ISP released an audio recording of male voice saying, “Down the hill,” but cannot confirm that voice belongs to man in photos.
Authorities announce a $41,000 reward for information leading to an arrest.
By Thursday 23 February, the ISP had received over 3900 tips. 1900 of the tips came in after the release of the Down the Hill audio.
Reward is now $50,000 at this point.
At 4pm on this day, the ISP announced that the FBI has taken over the hotline for tips in the case.
On Thursday March 9, Mike Patty, Liberty’s grandfather, spoke to media at a press conference. He thanked the community for the outpouring of support and says he believes tips will help solve the case.
Sgt. John Perrine of ISP says the case is “emotional for all of us” in reference to investigators. He reveals the reward has surpassed $224,000 and that police have received more than 11,000 tips.
On Friday, March 17, 2017 at 12 p.m. ISP, FBI and Carroll County served a search warrant at home and property of Ron Logan, where the bodies of Abby and Libby were found in February. Logan was taken into custody earlier that week on unrelated charges.
On April 19, 2019 (two entire years after the murders), the ISP released a short video recording in which the blue-jeaned and jacketed suspect is seen walking along the rail bridge for a little over a second.
He seems to be walking oddly in the clip but police have said this may be due to the spacing of the railway bridge planks?
An updated sketch of the suspect was also made public at this time. There was also an extended version of the audio recording, in which a slight rise in the suspect’s voice can be detected as he utters the word “Guys…”, before the phrase “Down the hill.”
It was further explained that the previously released sketch, showing an older man with goatee and cap, is now considered secondary; by contrast, the clean-shaven individual of the newly revised composite is the primary sketch of the prime suspect.
Police say this person may range from age 18 to 40, but caution that his “youthful appearance” could make him look younger than his true age.
As the investigation progressed, Libby and Abby’s families worked to keep the spotlight on their case.
The Abby and Libby Memorial Park was unveiled to the public in October 2021. The park has softball fields, a playground, picnic tables, an amphitheater.
Their families spoke about the community support they had received during the past years
”You just can’t thank them enough, you can’t thank anybody enough,” said Anna Williams, Abby Williams’s mother.
”They’re here, they’re here forever, long after we’ve gone,” said Becky Patty, Libby’s grandma. “This is their legacy.”
The families also spoke about the case status at this time
”We just pray that someday that person does the right thing,” said Anna.
Mike Patty knows that day will come.
”We’re coming, he’s got to be lucky every day, we’ve just got to be lucky one day,” he said.
On December 6, 2021, the Indiana State Police dropped a bit of a bombshell.
They made a public video and appealed for information about an online user name – anthony_shots
Police said the profile was used from 2016 to 2017 on social media sites, Snapchat and Instagram.
The anthony_shots profile was fake and used images of a known male model. The profile’s creator portrayed the model on his account to be extremely wealthy and showed him owning numerous sports cars.
Police have said they would like anyone who communicated with, met or attempted to meet the anthony_shots profile to contact law enforcement by calling 765-822-3535 or by emailing email@example.com.
Authorities would like those contacting them to provide as much information as possible, such as when you communicated with anthony_shots, how you communicated with the profile, what social media applications the account used and if anthony_shots attempted to meet you or obtain your address. They said if you have any screenshots of conversations with anthony_shots to attach them to the email.
Very quickly, the media tracked down information on a man named Kegan Anthony Kline.
Kegan had been charged on Aug. 29, 2020, for 30 counts, including child exploitation, possession of child pornography and obstruction of justice.
The charges stem from a search of his Peru, Indiana, home on Feb. 25, 2017, just 11 days after the bodies of Liberty German and Abigail Williams were discovered. The FBI, Indiana State Police and Peru Police Department took part in serving the search warrant, and the investigation was focused on Kline allegedly soliciting underage girls.
Peru and Delphi are around 40 miles apart – a 40 minute drive according to google maps.
According to a probable cause affidavit out of Miami County, obtained by 13News, Kline created the anthony_shots account approximately six months prior to when investigators interviewed him in February of 2017. He allegedly said he created the account to contact both girls he knew and girls he did not. Court documents show Kline saying he would talk to girls, even if they were under the age of 16, and that he found them on Instagram and then told them to message him on Snapchat.
Kline allegedly claimed to have received pictures from all of the girls he chatted with and had saved them.
Investigators seized six devices from Kline, including smartphones, a tablet and an iPod touch as part of the 2017 search warrant on the child pornography case.
A Samsung Galaxy phone was recovered. It had been factory reset on Feb. 23, 2017 – nine days after the Libby and Abby murders.. A factory reset essentially wipes all user data from a device. investigators were able to get information on the device after the reset.
On Feb. 27, 2017, Kline contacted police claiming he had located his iPhone 5. Investigators said they found images of females posing nude, but investigators could not determine their ages. Investigators also found much of the data from Facebook, Instagram, MeetMe, Snapchat and Twitter had been deleted. A review of the phone found that hours after police released him the day they searched his home, Feb. 25, he had uninstalled and deleted Snapchat and Instagram. The following day, MeetMe was uninstalled and deleted. The browser search history had also been deleted the morning of Feb. 27 before the phone was turned in to authorities.
To be clear, Kegan has not been identified as a formal suspect in the Delphi case.
The Indiana State Police do not confirm or deny anyone who is or is not a suspect in any ongoing investigation. At this time, we are looking for any information about the “anthony_shots” profile and anyone who may have had contact with that profile. The case that you are referring to is a separate child pornography case.
Kegan Kline’s court appointed public defender, Andrew Achey, released the following response to 13News.
My client had nothing to do with the unexpected, untimely and unfortunate passing of the girls in Delphi.
These clips were used in our podcast episode: