Dubuque Police say ‘lack of cooperation’ a difficulty in nine-year cold case

Police say they have clear leads on the Marlon Barber, Jr. investigation, but lack of cooperation has made it difficult to clear the case.
Published: Oct. 20, 2021 at 9:15 PM CDT
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DUBUQUE, Iowa (KCRG) - Wednesday marked nine years since 15-year old Marlon Barber, Jr. was shot at the 21st and Jackson Street area in downtown Dubuque.

A 16-year-old was also shot, but survived. Police say they have clear leads on the investigation, but still, almost 10 years after, have one main holdup.

”We have people of interest, I would say strong interest,” Lt. Ted McClimon, with the Dubuque Police Department, said. ”The problem for us has been lack of cooperation from some of the witnesses and people who were there that night who we believe have information that could put us a little bit closer, you know, potentially file a charge if the right information was provided or details provided to us.”

McClimon said cases where people are uncooperative are more common nowadays in Dubuque.

”There are always those investigations where people were not being cooperative, but it seems to be more prevalent recently,” McClimon said.

Dubuque police use more than 1,000 surveillance cameras to investigate crimes and have led to arrests in homicides. That, however, was not an option back in 2012 when the shooting happened.

”The area where this happened in 21st and Jackson Street area right now most or all of it would have been on camera had it happened today,” McClimon said.

That is why McClimon said it is frustrating for police when they know witnesses will not come forward with important information, but he said the department will not lose faith that, sooner rather than later, they will be able to bring closure to Barber Jr.’s family.

”They lost a son, a brother, a grandson, and knowing that that information is there and somebody is not giving it,” McClimon said. “The really sad part is for them.”

Police encourage anyone with information to reach out to Cpl. Chris Gorrell at 563-587-3806.

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