AN admission made by the wife of accused Delphi killer Richard Allen sparked a domino effect for DNA evidence that could cement his downfall, according to a former investigator on the case.
Ex-FBI Special Agent in Charge Paul Keenan, who oversaw the bureau’s investigation into the murders of Libby German and Abigail Wiliams for two years, spoke with The U.S. Sun ahead of Allen’s appearance in a Louisville court on Friday.
Allen, 50, was arrested on October 26 and charged with the murders of best friends Libby and Abby, two eighth graders found dead in a Delphi, Indiana woods on Valentine’s Day in 2017.
An affidavit unsealed by a judge last month revealed that an unspent .40 bullet found between the bodies of the two girls appeared to have been cycled through a pistol owned by Allen.
The documents also revealed that Allen admitted to being on the bridge at the same time the girls were killed in two separate interviews.
During an interview on Oct. 13, 2022, Allen told police he’d been wearing jeans and a blue or black Carhartt jacket that day, according to the affidavit.
The clothing Allen admitted wearing to police matches the outfit worn by a man – known as “Bridge Guy” – who was captured on video by Libby walking towards the two girls, instructing them to go “down the hill” moments before their deaths.
Police have long believed that individual to be the girls’ killer.
In a subsequent interview, Allen’s wife, Kathy Allen, told investigators that her husband still owns a blue Carhartt jacket, the affidavit states.
Keenan says the existence of the jacket is a potentially vital discovery and may still yield crucial DNA evidence.
He said he believes investigators have already built a strong case against Allen, but the jacket could prove to be the final nail in the proverbial coffin.
“With the gun and the addition of Allen placing himself at the crime scene, with multiple witnesses describing seeing a man matching his description, I think it’s a fairly strong case right now,” said Keenan.
“And then his wife admitted that he still had the jacket at the home.
“So I would assume that they took a bunch of clothing from his house as a result, and they’re probably testing the jacket for DNA right now because someone saw a man matching his description covered in mud and blood [at the scene],” he added.
“I absolutely think there will still be DNA of value on that coat.
“You see all these old cases being solved by DNA 40 years later. This was only five years ago.
“If they find Libby or Abby’s DNA on that jacket – he’s done.”
A ‘COMPELLING’ CASE
Allen is due to appear in person in Carroll Circuit Court on Friday where some major decisions are expected to be made with regard to his trial.
A special judge will rule on an updated gag order that could forbid anyone associated with the case from discussing it publicly before it goes to trial.
The judge will also hear arguments on a change of venue and a discovered request filed by Allen’s lawyers.
Allen is facing two charges of felony murder, with prosecutors alleging he committed the killings while kidnapping the girls, though no kidnapping charges have yet been filed.
He has pleaded not guilty to the charges, with his attorneys calling the case against him “flimsy” and insisting they have “the wrong guy.”
But Keenan disagrees, insisting the circumstantial evidence leveled against Allen so far already puts forth a compelling case against the married CVS worker.
With the gun and the addition of Allen placing himself at the crime scene, with multiple witnesses describing seeing a man matching his description, I think it’s a fairly strong case right now.
Currently at the center of the case is an unspent .40 caliber bullet found between Libby and Abby that appears to have been cycled through a pistol owned by Allen, a Sig Sauer Model P226.
According to the affidavit, Allen told police he had never allowed anyone else to use or borrow the firearm in the past. When quizzed about the unspent round, he reportedly did “not have an explanation” for why it was found there.
Theorizing how the unfired bullet came to be, Keenan believes the round may have been discharged from the chamber after the girls’ killer racked the gun in an effort to scare them.
Keenan suggests the gun may have also accidentally misfired or malfunctioned when the operator attempted to pull the trigger.
He said: “What I think happened is he was giving the girls orders to do something, whether it was getting on the ground or whatever; he was giving them orders to do something and they weren’t following them.
“Maybe they decided they wanted to fight or run, and in order to intimidate them, the attacker wracked a round or recycled a round through the gun.
“He may not have realized there was a round in the chamber when he cycled it, it may have just popped out and landed on the ground.
“He either didn’t know it happened or he couldn’t find it after the murders. That’s my guess.
“Racking a gun to scare someone is something that’s done in the movies, it’s not really done in real life, but I assume it would be enough to scare girls of that age,” he added.
“I think it would scare anyone, actually.”
Keenan was in charge of the Indianapolis branch of the FBI from 2020 until his retirement from the bureau in November 2021.
Though he joined the branch long after the investigation into the deaths of Libby and Abby had begun, solving the case was always a top priority for his colleagues, he said.
From early in the investigation, Keenan said the bureau “kept an open mind” at the fact that more than one person may have been culpable for the murders of Libby and Abby.
That’s an avenue of possibility investigators are still exploring almost six years on.
Prior to the affidavit’s release, prosecutors had pleaded with a judge to keep its contents out of public view, insisting they had “good reason” to believe Allen may not have acted alone.
No further details were shared, and the affidavit made no mention of a second culprit, though releasing the documents may compromise the integrity of the ongoing investigation, Keenan believes.
“It could be one person, it could be two people, it could be three – we don’t know,” he said.
“But if they have any concrete leads that others played a part, you don’t want to give that person or those people an opportunity to destroy evidence or flee.
“They clearly didn’t want somebody reading that affidavit. There’s no mention of another suspect, but it still doesn’t mean they don’t have evidence of another suspect, because not all evidence needs to be shared in a probable cause affidavit.
“So there could be other evidence that somebody else is involved. And maybe this gave him or her a clue as to what they’re looking at or who they’re looking for.
“I can’t say for certain as I’m not privy to that information anymore, but it’s certainly a possibility.”
In the newly unsealed affidavit, multiple witnesses reported seeing a man – who one described as “creepy” – matching Allen’s description on the bridge on the afternoon of Feb. 13, 2017.
None of the witnesses reported seeing that individual with anyone else in the information released so far.
Keenan said the second culprit – should they exist – could be someone who was already waiting in the woods near where the girls were killed, and therefore not seen by anyone walking with the man police believe to be Allen.
Alternatively, that potential accomplice could be an “aider and abetter” who assisted the killer either before or after the murders, though wasn’t necessarily present at the scene.
Sharing his own theories, Keenan said: “I think they’ll be looking at an aider and abetter or someone who knew about it and didn’t come forward, they could be charged as well.
“Maybe it was something to do with the evidence that they took or maybe somebody helped dispose of something after the crime.
“The only other thing – which I think is a very small possibility – is that someone else was waiting in the woods where these girls were actually murdered.
“When he took them from the bridge to that area, someone could’ve been waiting there for them already.”
Allen is the only suspect to be officially named by police, though other people of interest have previously been investigated in connection with the deaths of Libby and Abby.
One of those people was Ronald Logan, who owned the property where the girls’ bodies were found. His residence was located less than 1,400 feet away.
His property was searched by investigators weeks after the murders on March 17, 2017, a search warrant leaked by the Murder Sheet podcast revealed.
The agent wanted to search Logan’s home, outbuildings and vehicle for anything pertaining to the teens’ murders, including forensic evidence, hair, bodily fluids, guns, and cutting instruments, the document states.
The FBI also sought electronic devices and storage media.
For the first time, without confirming how the girls died, the document revealed that Libby and Abby’s bodies had been “staged”, both of the teens had lost a lot of blood, and a souvenir had been taken from at least one of the victims.
Logan, according to the document, also lied to police about his whereabouts on the day of the murders.
He reportedly told investigators a friend had picked him up from home on Feb. 13 between 2pm and 2.30pm so he could go to an aquarium store in Lafayette.
Logan contacted a family member the following morning and instructed them to tell police about the trip.
He also asked the family member to say they’d returned home between 5pm and 5.30pm.
Investigators believe Logan lied about his alibi, making “statements that were found to be factually false and intentionally designed to deceive” law enforcement, according to the search warrant.
They also said it appeared he’d asked the family member to lie about the alibi before Libby and Abby’s bodies had even been discovered.
Logan, who had a violent criminal past, was never named as a suspect or charged in connection with the deaths of Libby and Abby.
He died in January of complications from Covid-19.
Another individual who has been routinely linked with the Delphi probe is Kegan Kline, an online catfish and accused pedophile who was in communication with Libby through a bogus Snapchat account in the days before her death.
Kline admitted to communicating with Libby but denied any involvement in the murders.
In an exchange with another juvenile, the day after learning the girls had been murdered, Kline revealed he had plans to meet Libby on the Monon High Bridge but she “never showed.”
Police quizzed Kline on those plans during an interview in August 2020.
“See I don’t remember ever saying to meet up with me though,” Kline responded.
However, the officer questioning him pointed to a message he’d allegedly sent shortly after the news broke, which read: “Yeah, we were supposed to meet but she never showed up.”
During the interview, police also accused Kline of searching on his phone for media reports about the case, in addition to searching “how long does DNA last”, and looking up other infamous murder cases, including OJ Simpson and JonBenet Ramsey.
Kline has never been named as a suspect in the Delphi case. He is currently behind bars on unrelated child pornography charges.
In August, he was temporarily released into the custody of Indiana State Police, who at the time was conducting a search of the Wabash River, which was believed to be linked to the Delphi investigation.
The search lasted several weeks. Police never confirmed what they were searching for, but Allen was taken into custody not long after the search ended.
Kline, meanwhile, has since had several charges dropped from his child pornography case.
Keenan said the timing of Allen’s arrest and the search of the Wabash river was certainly “no coincidence.”
“I don’t know of any link [between Allen and Kline], but I find it interesting that some of the witnesses said in the affidavit that the man they saw on the trail looked like he knew where he was going,” said Keenan.
“And a question I had was, did he have prior contact with the victims and knew that they were going to be there at that time? Because he allegedly passed up on a group of other juvenile girls he walked past.
“So I’m wondering if he had prior contact and how that maybe ties into Kline.
“I’m sure they’re looking at any possible communications between him and Allen – and all of Allen’s communications during that timeframe.
“If anyone did tell him the girls were going to be there, that could possibly amount to a felony murder charge.”