- Associated Press - Wednesday, July 5, 2017

DELPHI, Ind. (AP) - Officials and residents in northern Indiana began a fundraising drive Wednesday to help pay for security improvements and other upgrades along a recreational trail where two teenagers were killed nearly five months ago.

The campaign aims to raise $50,000 by Aug. 30 to improve the 10-mile network of the Delphi Historic Trails. If the campaign reaches its goal, it will be eligible for a matching donation from the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority.

“As a community we will not stand idle on the importance of safety for our trails,” said Jacob Adams, director of community development for the city of Delphi. “We plan to set the precedence for trail safety for every community moving forward.”

The Delphi Trail Safety Task Force will use the money to install lighting, cameras, informational kiosks and public Wi-Fi at certain points along the trail. Trail markers will be built every tenth of a mile so emergency services can have more precise location information. Access to the Freedom Bridge Plaza and Bicentennial Plaza will also be improved.

The task force includes residents as well as the city of Delphi, Carroll County Chamber of Commerce, Wabash and Erie Canal, Delphi Historic Trails and Hoosier Heartland Inc.

An endowment fund will be created at the Carroll County Community Foundation to provide for long-term maintenance of the trail safety measures, according to a new release from the state housing authority.

In February, 13-year-old Abigail Williams and 14-year-old Liberty German were killed while walking on the trails. The attack remains unsolved. Their slayings prompted city officials to review and improve safety along the trails.

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