CARROLL COUNTY, Ind. — A much-anticipated hearing in Carroll County Tuesday resulted in a bail hearing granted for Delphi suspect Richard Allen, as well as a prosecutor saying in court what some have long believed: Allen may not be the sole suspect.
Carroll County Prosecutor Nicholas McLeland also gave the judge presiding over the hearing a redacted version of the probable cause affidavit. Special Judge Fran Gull will now have to decide whether that redacted document will be unsealed and released at a future time.
One of Carroll County Prosecutor Nicholas McLeland’s main arguments in keeping the affidavit sealed is the belief that Allen is not the only person involved in the case. He also argued before the judge on Tuesday that if an unredacted affidavit was released, witnesses in the investigation could be harassed. The redacted version has names of witnesses omitted.
The prosecutor presented several exhibits for his argument to keep the documents sealed including a letter from Libby German’s grandmother Becky Patty, who said she did not want the sensitive information in the investigation being released to the public. McLeland also referenced a Change.org petition that’s gathered more than 41,000 signatures in favor of the documents remaining sealed.
McLeland filed a gag order motion that would bar “parties, counsel, law enforcement officials, court personnel, coroner, and family members” from releasing information or “extra-judicial statements” to the public.
Allen was seen around 7:57 a.m. walking into the Carroll County Courthouse through a side entrance with his arms and legs in shackles. The legs of his orange jumpsuit were visible underneath a coat as he was surrounded by armed officers.
During the long-awaited hearing which lasted just over 30 minutes, Allen’s attorneys’ request for a bail hearing was granted. They state they’ve read the sealed probable cause and argue there’s no evidence of proof or a strong “presumption” of guilt. They are requesting Allen be released “on his own recognizance or in the alternative to set a reasonable bail.”
His bail hearing was set for February 17.
Allen, 50, was arrested on October 26 for the 2017 murders of Delphi teens Libby German and Abby Williams. The Carroll County prosecutor asked a circuit judge to seal the charging documents in the case, a move that is unusual in a murder investigation.
Indiana State Police Superintendent Doug Carter, someone who’s been a prominent figure in the Delphi investigation since the girls went missing on Feb. 13, 2017, has said he believes the investigation would not be compromised if the probable cause was unsealed.
Allen has been charged with two counts of murder.