25 years later, Tuscaloosa investigators seek cold case information

By WVUA 23 News Student Reporter Giselle Hood

It’s been 25 years since a man was gunned down in the parking lot of a local bar.

Joseph Todd Jowers was walking a woman out to her car in 1997 when he was fatally shot in the head. Twenty-five years later, the shooter remains unknown.

This is just one of many cold cases the Tuscaloosa Violent Crimes Unit is still investigating.

VCU Commander Capt. Jack Kennedy explained most of their breakthroughs come in the form of confessions or with the help of new technology.

“As time goes on, certain things happen in people’s lives,” Kennedy said. “People get older. People that have been carrying secrets they didn’t want to relinquish may change their mind and come forward. We also have advances in technology and there’s evidence that can be tested to standards that were not available at the time of the crimes.”

The woman Jowers was escorting was unable to describe the shooter to police.  Investigators believe the shooter may have hidden in nearby bushes. The shooting took place outside the now-closed Classics Lounge on 37th Street where Jowers worked.

Despite these types of cases going cold for many years, Kennedy said the team will never stop working to find answers.

“We’re all in this to help other people. I think our investigators in the Violent Crimes Unit have a unique connection to folks,” Kennedy explained. “We work the worst of the worst crimes and we see the damage that these acts can cause on families.”

If you have any information about the case, contact the Tuscaloosa Violent Crimes Unit at 205- 464-8690.

Categories: Crime, Local News