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Briefing on missing Kirbyville man, Joshua Larkin

"It all started on November 17, 2022", said Newton County Sheriff Robert Burby in regards to the disappearance of 38-year-old Joshua Larkin of Kirbyville.

Burby continued, "He was last seen that morning by his mom, Beverly Larkin (at their shared home) in Kirbyville. He was said to have gone hunting at the Cat Refuge in Call (owned by Rodney Blankenship), with some friends. He didn't come back home".

Burby said that one of Larkin's friends, Justin James said that he went out into the woods with him that day, but came back to wait on Larkin whom James said was still out hunting. However, Larkin never came out of the woods.

"We searched with blood hounds in that immediate area on numerous occasions. His phone was pinging from a large area, we searched that with negative results", added Burby. "We have gotten leads where he was supposed to have been seen. We have monitored his financials and there was no activity. We haven't received any credible sightings or anything like that. I feel that with the relationship he has with his mother, he would have contacted her by now. Plus, how can you sustain yourself for that period of time? So we assume there is foul play obviously. To put it bluntly, we're looking for a body. Or the remains of a body. I've been in contact with his mother, and my heart goes out to her, and his kids."

Burby continued, "From what we can ascertain from our investigation, he wasn't a bad guy. People come up with certain things that they say happened, but we go and search those things and we have talked to numerous people with allegations and are still receiving them. But we have to have credible, substantial proof of what actually occurred. There's a difference between what you have seen with your own eyes versus what someone told you and the more times we talk to people, the more the story changes".

Burby said that this update is to keep the case fresh in the minds of people. He added, "You would have to be some kind of a sad individual if you have information that you're not telling us. When I find the people who are involved, were going to go 110% in getting them appropriately charged and convicted. It doesn't matter whether I'm in office or not, I am a peace officer regardless. What I did here, will be taken into consideration and I will be called to testify, so, you can run, but you can't hide!"

"I'm gonna keep working on this. This is my A-number-one case. I'm going to keep working on it. All my cases are important, but this one, I'm going to see through." Burby said, "Someone knows something and they aren't talking. With Blankenship and all his friends in jail, there isn't anything to be afraid of. This gives you an opportunity to tell it."

When asked about Rodney Blankenship and Justin James, who are currently incarcerated on unrelated charges, Burby said that so far they not been charged in this case, "But if we get anything that we can substantiate, we will."

Burby closed by saying, "There's people out there trying to tell us things trying to get in our good graces and feeding us a line of baloney. We know the difference".

If anyone has any information on this case, you are asked to contact the Newton County Sheriff Office at 409-379-3636. You do not have to give your name.


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