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Police unveil composite sketch of Delphi double homicide suspect

USA TODAY logo USA TODAY 7/17/2017 Joseph Paul , Journal & Courier
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Video by CBS News

DELPHI, Ind. — Five months after the killings of 14-year-old Liberty German and 13-year-old Abigail Williams, investigators on Monday released a composite sketch of a man believed to be connected to their deaths.

The new evidence was published late Monday morning in an email news release from Indiana State Police.

The person in the sketch is described as a white male between 5-foot-6 and 5-foot-10-inches tall, weighing 180 to 220 pounds, with reddish brown hair and an unknown eye color.

While the hat in the sketch may not be accurate, investigators are asking the public to help identify the person by focusing on his facial features, Sgt. Kim Riley said during a news conference.

"We're going to get to the bottom of this sooner or later," Riley said. "If the composite helps us get there sooner, that's what we're hoping for."

Carroll County Sheriff Tobe Leazenby said the portrait was drawn by an FBI sketch artist and was based on "recent information" from a witness who saw the suspect about the time of German and Williams' deaths.

"It relates to a dialogue between a witness and a sketch artist," he said "That’s based upon an actual, real situation."

Delphi double homicide suspect

Delphi double homicide suspect
© Indiana State Police
Anyone with information about the killings or the person in the sketch should call the Delphi homicide tip line at 844-459-5786. Tips can be emailed to abbyandlibbytip@cacoshrf.com.

Details have been sparse since German and Williams first disappeared Feb. 13 while hiking near Monon High Bridge in a wooded, remote area east of Delphi.

Their bodies were found a day later roughly a half-mile from the bridge.

The sketch accompanies two more crucial pieces of evidence released by investigators in hopes the public would recognize the suspect.

In the months following the girls' deaths, police have released an image of a suspect and an audio recording of man saying, "Down the hill." Both pieces of evidence were captured by German's cellphone about the time of her death, police said.

The sketch comes nearly five months after the last piece of evidence was disclosed by a team of investigators comprised of local, state and federal authorities, including the FBI.

With those exceptions, police have remained tight-lipped, declining to release further evidence from German's phone or comment on the details of the girls' injuries.

Detectives have sifted through 18,000 tips and have interviewed at least 1,000 people as part of the high-profile double homicide investigation.

While several unrelated arrests have been made during the investigation, a suspect in the slayings has not been identified.

Meanwhile, a reward fund for information leading to an arrest has continued to grow, surpassing $230,000.

Mark Northam, who has worked in Delphi on a weekly basis for the past 36 years, said over lunch that he hopes the sketch renews a sense of hope among the small town's residents, who have been without closure for months.

"It's obviously on everyone's mind. Life has changed in that regard ... You can't drive through here without talking about," Northam said. "I think it's nice to have more information if it is an accurate sketch. It seems like the opportunity to resolve this is sort of fading."

Siera Farr, a Delphi resident for three years, said the tragedy has instilled a sense of fear in the community.

"A part of me is scared with being out," Farr said, "but I have to face that fear."

Farr added that she's hopeful the sketch will bring a break in the case, although she's doubtful the man in the drawing remains in the area.

"Someone here knows something," she said, "and I just wish they would speak up."


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