A Boone County man, 49-year-old Tommie Joseph Barber of Harrison, has been arrested and charged with multiple counts of rape, incest, sexually grooming a child, sexual indecency with a child and an enhancement of a felony committed in front of a child. The charges are in connection with three alleged victims in two cases. The allegations involving two of the victims date back to 2010.
According to the probable cause affidavit filed Thursday, Barber’s arrest follows an investigation initiated earlier this month when a woman contacted the Boone County Sheriff’s Office. The woman identified Barber as a “family friend,” who had been living at her residence for about a month.
After noticing what she described as “inappropriate” behavior, she asked Barber to move out of the home.
The woman said Barber offered to give an 11-year-old female family member a cellphone to allow her to play games. Barber reportedly continued to text the juvenile and advised her to erase the texts.
The woman took the phone to law enforcement. After learning the content of the text messages, the 11-year-old was interviewed at Grandma’s House Children’s Advocacy Center in Harrison.
Through its investigation, law enforcement learned of two other alleged victims dating back to 2010. At the time, the alleged male and female victims were under 10 years old. The alleged victims were located and brought to the Boone County Sheriff’s Office for interviews. In a follow-up interview with Barber, he reportedly did not deny the allegations the two made.
The affidavit notes Barber has been convicted of rape in the past, as well as other violent domestic charges.
He is being held in the Boone County Detention Center on a $500,000 bond. If he is able to post bond, Barber is to have no contact with the most recent victim or family members, and the investigator has requested the Boone County man wear a tracking device (ankle monitor) at his expense due to his violent history.