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A man accused of kidnapping and abusing a 9-year-old girl in Indiana is now linked to one of the state’s most mysterious murder investigations.
James Brian Chadwell “could” be linked to the 2017 Delphi murders of eighth-grade girls Abby Williams and Libby German, ABC News reported, citing the sheriff. The case gained national attention and went unresolved for four years.
“Our investigators are looking for him,” Carroll County Sheriff Tobe Leazenby said of Chadwell, the Journal & Courier reported.
Chadwell was arrested last week in Lafayette – about 20 miles from Delphi – on attempted murder, kidnapping and various charges of physical and sexual abuse, court records show.
According to an affidavit, a 9-year-old girl went missing on April 19 in Lafayette. Chadwell is accused of luring the young girl to his house under the trick that she could stroke his dogs.
Chadwell attacked the girl once inside, suffocating and knocking her out, prosecutors said.
The girl told police he took her to his basement and started raping her when he was interrupted by officers knocking on her door, authorities said.
Chadwell opened the door and allowed officers to enter the house, where the young girl was found in a basement that had been locked with a chain, prosecutors said. The girl was “visibly distraught and crying, with her clothes on the floor next to her,” prosecutors said.
Chadwell was charged Monday with attempted murder, pedophilia, kidnapping, forcible confinement resulting in serious bodily injury, beatings and strangulation, according to court records.
“Who do I talk to about a psychological assessment?” Chadwell asked the judge during his hearing on Monday, the Journal & Courier reported.
Delphi Murders Investigation
Police have not shared details of how they may have linked Chadwell to the deaths of Abby Williams and Libby German.
Libby and Abby were walking a trail on February 13, 2017, when they went missing, according to the FBI. Their parents reported them missing because they did not arrive at their place of care.
A day later, volunteers participating in the search found their bodies in the woods east of Delphi in Carroll County, authorities said. The causes of their deaths have never been revealed.
The FBI released a voice recording and video of the suspect. He is heard saying, “Guys … Down the Hill” in the audio taken from Libby’s phone, according to Indiana State Police.
Hundreds of individuals, including witnesses and suspects, were interviewed during the four-year investigation, WRTV reported.
The deaths of the girls have been the subject of numerous documentaries and actual crime podcasts as the search for answers continues.
Abby’s mother, Anna Williams, said on the fourth anniversary of their deaths: “We will have answers. We will have to wait patiently for this, ”WRTV reported.
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