Former Dallas Cowboys running back Marion Barber was found dead in his apartment on Wednesday, Frisco Police said.
The cause of death is unknown. He was 38.
Authorities responded to a welfare check after someone reported a leak coming from Barber’s apartment, the Forth Worth Star-Telegram reported.
Police spokesperson Joshua Lovell said officials and the county’s medical examiner’s office started investigating the cause of the 38-year-old’s death.
“Frisco Police responded to a welfare concern at an apartment believed to be leased by Marion Barber,” Lovell said. “Frisco Police along with the Collin County Medical Examiner’s Office are investigating an unattended death at the location.”
The Cowboys issued a statement Wednesday evening, saying, “We are heartbroken by the tragic death of Marion Barber III. Marion was an old-school, hard-nosed football player who ran with the will to win every down. He had a passion for the game and love for his coaches and teammates. Our hearts go out to Marion’s family and friends during this difficult time.”
Barber was drafted in the fourth round by the Cowboys in the 2005 NFL draft. He spent six seasons playing for America’s team, amassing more than 4,300 rushing yards, 47 rushing touchdowns, 1,280 receiving yards, and six receiving touchdowns, per KDAF. The 5-foot-11 running back played one season for the Chicago Bears before retiring in 2011.
Since his retirement, Barber has struggled with mental health issues and was arrested by law enforcement due to criminal activity. In 2014, he was detained by Mansfield police and taken to a local hospital for a mental evaluation. He was also arrested in 2019 on two misdemeanor counts of criminal mischief in a 2018 incident where he allegedly damaged two cars while running in Frisco.
According to NBC 5, Denton County law officials announced that Barber had pleaded no contest to the 2018 incident in April. Additionally, an arrest warrant was issued for Barber after police positively identified him as the suspect.