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The 'Snapchat killer' case has been reopened after investigators confirmed they are probing possible ties to a Catfish profile that may be connected to two the murder of two teenagers.
However, the grandmother of one of the victims claims that the teens never mentioned speaking to anyone online prior to their disappearance and death.
Becky Patty told The Independent that this is the first indication that her granddaughter Libby German, 14 and friend Abby Williams, 13 may have been meeting someone online.
Both disappeared on February 13, 2017, after they set off on a hike along the Monon High Bridge Trail in Delphi, Indiana.
The next day their bodies were discovered half a mile from the trail.
Details of how the girls died, as well as details of the crime scene, have never been disclosed by authorities.
On Monday, Indiana State Police said officials had "uncovered" a fake online profile called anthony_shots.
The profile was used from 2016 to 2017 on Snapchat and Instagram and used photos of an "extremely wealthy" male model.
Investigators say the person behind the account groomed underage girls to get them to send nude photos and try to meet them.
The male model whose photos were used has been identified and is not a person of interest in the case.
Police announced yesterday that the creator of the bogus profile has been identified and was arrested on charges of child sexual abuse images and child exploitation tied to the account in 2020.
An affidavit obtained by WISH-TV reveals that Kegan Anthony Kline, a 27-year-old man with addresses in Kokomo and Peru, close to Delphi, admitted to grooming underage girls online.
The affidavit states that Indiana State Police and the FBI carried out a search warrant on 25 February 2017 at Mr Kline’s home in Peru.
Mr Kline allegedly said he used the account to talk to underage girls and had received 100 sexual photos and about 20 sexually explicit videos from around 15 underage girls.
He was charged with 30 felonies in 2020 over the case.
Ms Patty, yesterday said she does not know Mr Kline and had never heard of him before investigators released the information about the social media profile to the public.
"The name means nothing to me, but I’ve heard that he lived in Kokomo and Peru – they’re just one and two counties over so at all times he’s lived just about half an hour away," she said.
She added: "I don’t know if there is any connection between him and the girls. Right now we don’t know if the account is connected to the girls."
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On the day the girls went missing, Libby had posted photos on Snapchat of her and Abby walking along the trail. She also captured a grainy video on her phone of a man dressed in blue jeans, a jacket and a hoodie walking along the abandoned railroad bridge.
Investigators released a still image from the video and audio of the man telling the two girls: "Go down the hill."
The man has never been identified. He is described as a white male aged between 16 and 40 years old, between 5’ 6” and 5’ 10” in height and weighing between 180 and 200 pounds.
Libby’s grandmother issued an emotional plea for anyone with information about the anthony_shots account to contact investigators.
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