The grandparents of a woman once married to an Indiana man who was arrested earlier this month for child molestation and solicitation, apparently compared their former grandson-in-law to the sketch of the Delphi killer well before the public saw the uncanny resemblance via a recent mugshot.
“When we saw that picture on the news, we said that looks like Andy. We placed [the sketch] with Andy before this,” 76-year-old Donna Clack told DailyMailTV, referring to 46-year-old Charles “Andy” Eldridge.
As CrimeOnline previously reported, Randolph County authorities arrested Eldridge on January 8 and charged him with felony child molestation and solicitation. Eldridge was caught during a sting operation after he allegedly chatted with who he thought was a 13-year-old girl online and arranged a meet-up in Union City. Eldridge, unbeknownst to him, was actually chatting with an undercover police officer.
When Eldridge arrived to the meeting spot, police immediately arrested him. During an interview with detectives, the suspect reportedly admitted to previous sexual acts over a period of time with another underage girl.
Delphi is around two hours northwest of Randolph County. It’s a small town with a population of a little over 2,000, where best friends Abby Williams, 13, and Libby German, 14, were found murdered in February 2017, with their bodies dumped near Monon High Bridge.
Clack, the grandmother of Eldridge’s former wife, Erin, told DailyMailTV that she doesn’t trust Eldridge, and part of the reason why is because how he allegedly treated his own child. Eldridge has never shown interest in his son, now 18, at least according to Clack, who’s now the teen’s guardian.
“Why our granddaughter ever married him is beyond me. When they were married, he would take the baby and put him in a room by himself, shut the door, turn off all the lights. He was only about seven months. He would cry and cry until he would throw up. I found out about this and I said, you’re not keeping him anymore. I took care of him.”
Clack’s husband, Robert Clack, 77, told the outlet that Eldridge was “weird” and obsessed with staying out in the woods.
“He was totally different. He was always talking about guns. He was always out there [in the woods], dressed in Army clothes.”
Donna Clack agreed.
“He would always go out and he wasn’t hunting,” Donna Clack added. “He would go in the woods and what he’d do, we don’t know. I never let any of the kids go with him. I never trusted Andy.”
Eldridge’s former brother in law, 63-year-old Richard Jones, said the suspect had “a hell of a temper,” as evidenced, according to Jones, in a physical fight the pair got into years ago.
“He beat me down. I’ve got heart problems and he was beating me in the chest. I can’t say if he would kill someone or not but he’s very violent.”
While the FBI and state police are looking into the matter, they indicated it’s too soon to tell whether Eldridge should be considered a suspect in the Delphi murders. At this time, authorities are not even calling Eldridge a person of interest.
“The team is aware of this arrest and will investigate to see if there could be any connection to the murders that occurred in Delphi, Indiana on February 14th of 2017,” a statement by the Indiana State Police read. “It is important for the public and media to know that many similar tips and arrests of other persons alleged to be connected to the Delphi murders occur with some frequency in and outside of Indiana.”
Eldridge is one of many people who’ve been investigated in connection with the Delphi killings. Perhaps the most notable person investigated so far is convicted sex offender Daniel Nations, who was eventually cleared as a suspect.
Meanwhile, the Delphi murders investigation continues. Anyone with any information is urged to call the FBI at (844) 459-5786 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
[Feature Photo: Charles Eldridge;Delphi Sketch/Police Handouts]