Two of the child’s siblings have also been charged in connection with the crime. 20-year-old Jeremiah Perry has been charged with aggravated battery, concealing a homicide and obstruction of justice. An unidentified juvenile sibling also faces unspecified charges.
According to Lake County prosecutors, on December 29, 2021, Damari’s mother told relatives that he needed punished. The little boy was consequently forced into a cold shower for an extended period of time, after which he vomited and became unresponsive. His body was then wrapped in a trash bag, and thermal burns indicate someone attempted to burn him. Finally, Damari’s charred corpse was taken to Gary and left near an empty house before the family falsely reported him missing. An autopsy later determined his cause of death was hypothermia.
Perhaps most tragically, the responsibility for Damari’s death reaches far beyond those who stand accused. It has been revealed that Jannie Perry lost custody of her four other children due to allegations of domestic violence in 2014. Because the case remained open when Damari was born on December 30, 2015, he was placed into foster care at the time.
Little is known about exactly what happened that day on the Monon High Bridge, but the few facts we do know are so incredible and disturbing that you could almost be forgiven for thinking this case couldn’t possibly be real. Sadly, the beginning is pure Grimm’s fairy tale: Two girls walking alone in the woods encounter a wolf in human’s clothing. The middle is more of a dystopian techno-thriller: Realizing they’re in trouble, one of the doomed heroines uses her phone to capture clues vital to solving her own murder.
But what happened that day to Libby and Abby is tragically real, and the end of their story hasn’t been written yet.
February 13, 2017: Friends Liberty “Libby” German (14) and Abigail “Abby” Williams (13) woke up late that morning after a sleepover at Libby’s house the previous night. Although the eighth graders would have normally been in school, all students in the Delphi Community School Corporation had that day off because both the previous Friday (February 10th) and Monday (February 13th) had been designated “Snow Make-Up Days” at the beginning of the academic year. However, since the winter had been mild and the allotted snow days hadn’t been used, the girls ended up with a four-day weekend instead.
And they were trying to make the most of it.
After spending Sunday practicing their softball swings, painting pictures in Libby’s room with Abby’s art supplies, and giggling late into the night, the girls were ready that next morning to start a new adventure. Libby, like many children, lived in a multigenerational household. Her home included her grandparents Mike and Becky Patty (who were also her legal guardians), father Derrick German, and older sister Kelsi. After Derrick made the girls breakfast, Libby asked her grandmother for permission to go to the Monon High Bridge Trail, a hiking spot just outside of Delphi’s city limits. Becky agreed but told the girls they would need to arrange a ride.
At first, it looked as if the girls would stuck at the house after all. Everyone in Libby’s busy family already had plans for the day. Then fate cruelly intervened.
When initially approached, Libby’s older sister Kelsi had refused the girls’ request, explaining that she was leaving to help her boyfriend clean a truck he hoped to sell before eventually heading to work. She already had a full day ahead of her and just didn’t have time to take the younger girls anywhere.
It was then, in a particularly heartbreaking twist, that Kelsi’s conscience got the better of her. The two sisters were close, and Kelsi felt guilty about letting Libby down. So she wound up relenting, telling her younger sibling that she could drop the girls off at the trails if they could arrange another ride home.
That decision must haunt Kelsi to this very day.
After securing the promise of a ride home from Libby’s dad, Derrick, the girls were on their way. Kelsi drove them to the Monon High Bridge, dropping them off near the trail’s entrance around 1:30 pm.
As she watched Libby and Abby walk away, talking between themselves, Kelsi had no way of knowing she would never see either girl alive again.
Please return for Part Two on Saturday. In the meantime, if you have any information pertaining to the murders of Libby German and Abby Williams- or the social media profile “anthony_shots” – please call the Delphi Homicide Investigation Tip Line (844-459-5786), the Indiana State Police (1-800-382-7537), or the Carroll County Sheriff’s Department (765-564-2413). You can also contact Abbyandlibbytip@cacoshrf.com.