BLOUNTVILLE, Tenn. (WJHL) — After almost forty years, Sullivan County investigators say an interview with an informant helped them identify a suspect in the murder of Floyd “Otis” Turner.
Officials with the Sullivan County Sheriff’s office say Turner was found in a vehicle, slumped over, and deceased in July 1984.
Now, decades later, a grand jury found there was sufficient evidence to indict Johnny Barb for the murder, if we were still alive.
Sgt. Robert Clemons told News Channel 11 he conducted a 2022 interview that allowed investigators to link Barb to the case.
“One of the breakthroughs is that I contacted a reliable informant that knew the suspect,” Clemons said.
Clemons said the informant was willing to speak about Barb after Clemons confirmed that Barb was deceased.
“In my conversations with that informant, he disclosed to me that the suspect had spoken to him back in the late 80s, about homicide, and he gave details that were similar to the exact details of this case,” said Barb.
Clemons says after so many years, he’s glad to have helped bring justice for Turner.
“I feel more happiness for them than I can for anything else, because that’s the main objective in criminal investigations is to help the families of victims and the victim themselves,” said Clemons.
Turner’s brother Don told News Channel 11 that though he still has questions about what happened to his brother, he’s glad that a suspect has been identified.
“I’m thankful they got the one now,” Turner said.