Prosecutors seek to have ‘Odinist cult’ theory tossed from Delphi murders trial

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Prosecutors in Indiana have sought to have theories that an “Odinist pagan cult” was responsible for the deaths of two young girls dismissed ahead of the trial of the man accused of their murders.

Richard Allen previously confessed to the murders of Abby Williams, 13, and 14-year-old Libby German in 2022. Their bodies were discovered on 14 February 2017, a day after they had gone for a walk on abandoned train tracks near their homes in Delphi, Indiana.

In September 2023 Mr Allen – a Delphi resident since 2006 – made the bombshell claim that the teenage best friends were killed as part of a “ritualistic sacrifice” at the hands of a white nationalist cult, though prosecutors described them as “fanciful”.

The filing, obtained by The Independent, claimed that the brutal murders were carried out by members of a pagan Norse religion and white nationalist group called Odinists. “Members of a pagan Norse religion, called Odinism, hijacked by white nationalists, ritualistically sacrificed Abigail Williams and Liberty German,” the documents read.

The nature of the crime scene pointed to the work of a cult from the get-go, according to the sprawling 135-page document. The lawyers also claimed there were sticks placed over the girls’ bodies, in line with the pagan practices linked to the Nordic-inspired rituals.

Investigators abandoned the Odinist line of inquiry around March 2017, despite the evidence at the scene, according to the defence filing from September 2023. Three investigators looked into the pagan connection including Rushville assistant police chief Todd Click.

In a motion filed on 29 April, Carroll County Prosecutor Nick McLeland asked Special Judge Fran Gull to bar Mr Allen’s attorneys from mentioning the theory or anything “not supported by admissible evidence.”

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