Two years have passed since two Indiana teens set out for a hike and never returned, instead crossing paths with a monster who took their lives and forever changed the lives of their devastated loved ones and the town they called home.
Abigail “Abby” Williams, 13, and Liberty “Libby” German, 14, were found dead off a rural hiking trail near Delphi on Feb. 14, 2017. Authorities have yet to catch their killer, but on Wednesday vowed they would bring the person responsible to justice.
“This is not a cold case,” Carroll County Prosecutor Nicholas McLeland told reporters Wednesday on what was the two-year anniversary of the girl’s disappearance. “This case is not closed. We are not done with this investigation — there are countless people working on this every day.
“This case has affected the community in so many ways,” McLeland continued. “The people behind the scenes will not rest until we get this case solved. Abby and Libby deserve that kind of dedication, not only from me but from everybody involved.”
Anyone who comes forward with the information is asked to include, if possible, a suspect’s name, date of birth or approximate age, physical description, their address, vehicle information, a specific reason why they believe this person should be considered a suspect, a possible motive and any connection that person may have to Delphi.
“We want to encourage people to continue to call in with any information that they may have,” McLeland said. “I always use the adage of, ‘If you see something, say something.’ Nothing is going to be considered a ‘dumb tip’ or a tip that we don’t want. Information is our main weapon here.”
Investigators have sifted through more than 38,000 tips and selectively released information on the case over the past two years, including a photo of a man reportedly seen on the trail around the time the girls disappeared and audio Libby managed to record of the man believed to have killed her.
“Down the hill,” a man can be heard saying in the recording.
Abby and Libby’s deaths have permanently altered the makeup of Delphi, a small city still covered in blue and purple ribbons for their memory. The Indiana town was named after the ancient Greek city, which was considered a sanctuary and, to those who called it home, the center of the world. The same could be said of the residents of Delphi, Indiana, which described itself on its website as a “great place to live.”
“We don’t have things like that,” business owner James Griffith told WXIN-TV of the killings of Libby and Abby. “This doesn’t happen in Delphi.”
There are changes to the community some may have not noticed, including the extra lights and cameras installed on all of the trails in the wake of the murders. Then there are the bigger differences, such as the park being developed in Abby and Libby’s honor.
And finally there are the actions taken that, for the residents of Delphi, have become the new norm. Hanging signs urging potential witnesses to come forward and sharing on social media posts about the girls and the details believed to be known about their killer have become part of life for the residents of Delphi, who believe it’s their duty to not let the girls be forgotten.
“If them little girls can take picture and record a voice with something like that going on, the rest of us can stay strong enough to hunt down and keep searching for the person who did this,” Griffith said.
Loved ones and community members gathered Wednesday and will gather Thursday to remember the girls. It’s their hope that the second anniversary of their death is the last they mark without having answers.
“We’ve been saying it all along: Someone knows something,” Mike Patty, Libby’s grandfather, told the Lafayette Journal & Courier. “Someone’s going to talk. Someone’s going to think, ‘Maybe this one thing I saw might mean something.’ And maybe that’s the one thing that gets this guy.”
Anyone with tips is asked to either email Abbyandlibbytip@cacoshrf.com, call the tip line at 844-459-5786, the Indiana State Police at 800-382-7537 or the Carroll County Sheriff at 765-564-2413.