Chicago man arrested in connection with 14-year-old girl's slaying

Takaylah Tribitt, 14, was found dead Sept. 16 in an alley near 20th Avenue and Pennsylvania Street, the Lake County sheriff’s office said Sunday.

A Chicago man has been arrested in connection with the shooting death of a 14-year-old girl whose body was found in a Gary alley.

Deon Simmons, 35, was wanted in the slaying of Takaylah Tribitt, who had been reported missing in Chicago, Nick Gonzalez, inspector for the U.S. Marshals Service Great Lakes Regional Fugitive Task Force, told The (Northwest Indiana) Times.

Simmons was taken into custody without incident about 11:30 a.m. Tuesday on Chicago's South Side, Gonzalez said. It wasn't clear which charges he may face.

Detectives with the Lake County/Gary Metro Homicide Unit worked with DNA and social media search warrants over the past year, Gary police Cmdr. Jack Hamady said.

Deon Simmons | Cook County sheriff’s office

"They got a lead and kept on that lead, and uncovered some great evidence," he said.

Simmons was expected to face extradition proceedings in Cook County, Illinois, before facing a Lake Criminal Court judge in Indiana, Lake County Sheriff Oscar Martinez said.

Tribitt was found dead by utility workers Sept. 16, 2019. She remained unidentified for months as the Lake County coroner's office awaited the results of DNA analysis.


Several family members came forward after a composite sketch of Tribitt and a photo of a T-shirt with the words "Supergirl power" were released.

She had been reported missing Sept. 1, 2019, Chicago police said.

It was unclear whether Simmons has an attorney who might comment on his behalf.