Chicago man arrested for murder of teen found tied to pole in Gary alley

GARY, Ind. (WGN) — Deon Simmons, a 35-year-old Chicago man, was taken into custody Tuesday in connection to the murder of 14-year-old Takaylah Tribitt.

Utility workers found Tribitt’s body tied to a pole in an alley near East 20th Avenue and Pennsylvania Street in Gary in September 2019.

Gary, Lake County and FBI law enforcement personnel worked the case and on Tuesday, Chicago Police officers executed two warrants on Simmons.

Simmons was taken into custody on Tuesday at about 11:30 a.m. on the 6900 block of South Michigan Avenue, a U.S. Marshals Service spokesperson said. The Times reports detectives did a lot of work with DNA and social media search warrants during the past year, Gary Police said.

The Chicago Sun-Times reports Deon Simmons appeared for an extradition hearing Thursday in Chicago on a murder warrant in Lake County, Ind., and a DUI warrant in White County, Ind. Simmons reportedly agreed to be sent to Indiana to face those charges.

The Chicago Tribune reports that when Tribitt was found, she appeared to have been dead for two days. The girl was unidentified at the time. Lake County, Ind. investigators released a photo of a T-shirt similar to the one Takaylah was wearing along with a composite sketch of her face in an effort to identify her later that month, after which several of her family members contacted investigators after seeing the images. Takaylah Tribitt was identified through DNA analysis in December.

A booking photo of Simmons was not immediately released.

The Lake County Coroner determined Tribitt died from a gunshot wound.