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Suspect in murder of Indiana teen girls wins prison transfer

Apr 15, 2023, 9:06 AM

FILE - Officers escort Richard Matthew Allen out of the Carroll County courthouse following a heari...

FILE - Officers escort Richard Matthew Allen out of the Carroll County courthouse following a hearing, Nov. 22, 2022, in Delphi, Ind. A judge has ordered Allen, charged with killing two northern Indiana teenage girls, transferred to a different state correctional facility, Friday, April 14, 2023, after the suspect's attorneys argued that his mental health is deteriorating after months in isolation. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings, File)
Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS

(AP Photo/Darron Cummings, File)

DELPHI, Ind. (AP) — A judge has ordered a man charged with killing two teenage girls in Indiana transferred to a different state correctional facility after the suspect’s attorneys argued that his physical and mental health is deteriorating after months in isolation.

Richard Matthew Allen, 50, will be moved to another facility that will accommodate his medical, physical and psychological needs, the Journal & Courier reported, citing a court order signed Friday.

Since shortly after his arrest in the 2017 killings of Liberty German, 14, and Abigail Williams, 13, Allen has been held in isolation at the maximum-security Westville Correctional Facility for his protection. It’s unclear where he’ll be sent next, but the order suggests it will have different medical facilities.

In an April 5 request for Allen’s transfer, his defense team said he sleeps on a pad on a concrete floor, hasn’t received visits from his wife or family for the past five months, and is forced to wear the same clothes for “days and days on end, all of which are soiled, stained, tattered and torn.” The attorneys’ request cited a change in “his overall mental status.”

The judge’s order does not specify where Allen will be moved, but it asks officials to follow the guidance of physicians and psychiatrists. Gull has scheduled a June 15 hearing on a defense request to allow Allen to be released on bail.

Allen, of Delphi, Indiana, has maintained his innocence.

He was arrested in October and charged with two counts of murder in the February, 2017, killings of the girls, known as Libby and Abby. They had gone hiking on a trail just outside of their hometown of Delphi, about 60 miles (100 kilometers) northwest of Indianapolis. Their bodies were found the next day in a rugged, heavily-wooded area near the trail.

Police say the teens’ deaths are homicides but have not revealed how they died in the case that has haunted the Indiana city of about 3,000 residents.

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Suspect in murder of Indiana teen girls wins prison transfer