BRISTOL — Two years have passed since 23-year-old Sheena Kiska was found dead, stabbed in her apartment. Since that day, there have been benefit concerts to help her two children, a wrongful death lawsuit against the apartment complex where she died and a legislative attempt to pass a bill in her honor. And yet no one has been arrested. No one charged. No motive given, no suspects named. Instead, in the two years since March 18, 2008, there mostly has been silence. Bristol Town Marshal Michael Swallow said there is very little information he can share about the case, except to say his department's investigation was turned over to the Elkhart County prosecutor's office in April 2009. But that investigation, said prosecutor's office investigator Bill Wargo, has not yet resulted in any formal charges. "It's been submitted," Wargo said, "but we're still waiting for additional information." Wargo said he couldn't comment on what information was still missing, but said investigators from the prosecutor's office as well as the Bristol Police Department were still actively involved in the case. "It's not uncommon that we ask for more information," Wargo said. "When working with a small department, it sometimes takes a while to get all the pieces together." But without those pieces, what's known is scant. Kiska was found stabbed to death in her Rivershores Apartment. Her family has contended that Kiska had longed to move out of her apartment after a series of break-ins, but couldn't because of a restrictive lease that would have required her to pay $2,500 before moving out. This past legislative session, state Rep. Craig Fry, at the urging of Kiska's family, tried to get a bill passed that would make it easier for renters to get out of their leases if they were the victims of a crime. That attempt, however, ultimately failed as the Sheena's Law bills died on the legislature floor. But now, two years after the grisly murder of Kiska was first discovered, the status of her case remains mostly behind the sealed lips of law enforcement officials. Swallow said his officers in Bristol are still confident that the case will one day be solved, and justice served. "I feel for her family; we want to give them some answers," Swallow said. "We will continue to work on this until we have a conviction." Staff writer Dave Stephens: firstname.lastname@example.org (574) 235-6209
A stone bearing Sheena Kiska's photo marks her grave in a South Bend cemetery. The woman was murdered in her Bristol apartment in 2008. Now, a local legislator is pushing for 'Sheena's Law' to protect renters who fear staying in their rental units.
Tribune Photo/SANTIAGO FLORES