Northeast Missouri man still missing after 11 years

An earlier photo of the Yarbrough family

A northeast Missouri man went missing in 1999.

Eleven years have passed, but not the desire by his friends, loved ones and authorities to find answers.

KHQA's Rajah Maples sat down with the family of Dale Yarbrough and an investigator last month to find out what they do know happened.

Sgt. Regina Webb said, "We know that James Dale Yarbrough went missing from his family farm on Sept. 15, 1999, and that's all we know for a fact."

From what you do know, he got up one morning and walked out of the house, and you don't know what happened after that?

James Yarbrough answered, "That's exactly right."

Yarbrough left behind all of his belongings, including his wallet and driver's license. Sgt. Regina Webb started working on the case when she started working at the Marion County Sheriff's Department in 2001. She says neither Yarbrough's bank account nor his social security number have been used since the day he went missing. But Sgt. Webb has suspicions.

She says Yarbrough worked for several asphalt companies out of the Hannibal area, many of which scam the elderly out of thousands of dollars throughout the country.

Webb said, "There was an issue. He came home early, left the job early from one of those job sites in Iowa, came home, didn't say anything to his family. Everything was fine. He was home for a week or two. He went to visit some friends at a neighborhood establishment in Hannibal. He came home that night. The next morning, he went out and got the mail, spoke to his mom. Everything was fine. We know he disappeared between 9:30 a.m. and noon."

Yarbrough's father thinks Dale trusted the wrong people.

What do you think happened?

James Yarbrough said, "We don't have a clue. We think he was picked up by someone, and I think something bad happened to him."

Dale Yarbrough came from a tight-nit family and had two sisters. Now these childhood photos are one of the few memories his family has to hold onto. And their search for the truth is as strong today as it was the day he went missing.

Do you think the people responsible for his disappearance are still in our viewing area?

Webb said, "Absolutely. There are several individuals in the area that we know have specific information about Dale being missing. We know that, and I think our greatest hope for them is that someone steps up and takes accountability and responsibility and gives this family some closure."

Sgt. Regina Webb says she's in the process of collecting DNA from each member of Yarbrough's immediate family to submit to the FBI's DNA analysis unit.

That way if remains ever surface, authorities will be able to compare them with the family's genetic makeup for a possible match.