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  Illinois State Police News Release   

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Illinois State Police Cold Case Squad Solve 2009 Murder

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Press Release Date: October 2, 2014    || Archived February 5, 2016

Tyrik Knight Charged with the Murder of Arika Sims

Tyrik Knight, 31

CHICAGO -- The Illinois State Police (ISP) today announced that its Cold Case Squad solved a 2009 cold case involving an adult female who was reported missing to the Dolton Police Department on April, 4, 2009. 

Dolton Police contacted the Illinois State Police to lead the investigation after a 911 caller reported seeing a body in the Little Calumet River. 

The victim was subsequently identified as Arika Sims, 37 of Chicago, who was reported missing on April 4, 2009 and was last seen by family members on March 26, 2009.  The Cook County Medical Examiner's Office ruled Sims' death a homicide with the cause of death being strangulation.

During the course of the investigation, investigators were able to determine that Sims was in the company of a boyfriend, Tyrik Knight, before she was reported missing.    ISP Special Agents had limited leads early in the investigation, but remained persistent and followed through with numerous interviews, tips and visits to known acquaintances.

“Cold cases are extremely hard to solve, but every homicide investigation remains open and is a priority for the Illinois State Police’s Cold Case Unit until we solve the case,” said ISP Director Hiram Grau.  “The ISP Special Agents from ISP Zone 1 Cold Case Squad and the Dolton Police Department have tirelessly worked this case and remained unrelenting in their efforts to find justice, closure, and peace for Sims’ family and friends,” Grau added.

Illinois State Police Captain John Biffany also commended the hard work and dedication of investigators and underscored the importance of law enforcement collaboration, persistence and follow up on every single lead – no matter how small.   

 “Our Agents remained persistent through the years and relied on every lead, interview, evidence and law enforcement partnerships to uncover more than five years of solid investigative police work that put a murderer behind bars,” said ISP Zone 1 Captain John Biffany.

The ISP Cold Case Squad recently solved the Maria Ridulph cold case in 2012, a case that went cold for 55 years until the ISP solved the case in 2012.  It is believed to be the oldest cold case in U.S. history.

The Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office charged Tyrik Knight with one count of First Degree Murder of Anika Sims.

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