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Suzanne Morphew
Suzanne Morphew. (Handout)

Human remains discovered this month in Saguache County were identified Wednesday as Suzanne Morphew, a Chaffee County woman who went missing in May 2020, according to the Colorado Bureau of Investigation.

Investigators found Morphew’s remains Friday while searching near the town of Moffat during an investigation unrelated to her disappearance, the CBI said. 

The agency said it would not release the exact location where the remains were found or provide additional details on the state of the remains. 

No arrests have been made.

“While this case has garnered attention from around the world, it has touched our community and the sheriff’s office deeply,” Chaffee County Sheriff John Spezze said in a statement Wednesday. “We have never stopped our investigation and will continue to follow all leads in pursuit of justice for Suzanne.” 

About a year after Morphew was reported missing on Mother’s Day in 2020, her husband, Barry Morphew, was charged with her murder. The charges were dropped on April 19, 2022, with the prosecutor saying without a body the case could not move forward.

In an interview with “Good Morning America” in May, Barry Morphew denied his involvement in her disappearance. The same month, he filed a $15 million lawsuit against prosecutors and investigators accusing them of violating his constitutional rights.

The murder case against Barry Morphew was dismissed without prejudice, meaning prosecutors could file additional charges if investigators feel there is enough evidence to go forward with a trial. 

“From what we know, Barry is as innocent as he was from Day 1,” Iris Eytan, Barry Morphew’s lawyer said in a statement late Wednesday. “(District Attorney Linda Stanley) and law enforcement got it wrong. We hope the authorities will quickly admit their wrongful persecution of Barry, an innocent man, to treat the Morphews like the victims they are, and charge the person(s) responsible for Suzanne’s killing.”

Linda Stanley, the district attorney in the 11th Judicial District, which oversaw the Barry Morphew prosecution, declined to comment on the discovery of the remains, an office spokesperson said.

Eytan said Barry Morphew is with his daughters, Macy and Mallory Morphew, and that the three are “struggling with immense shock and grief after learning today that their mother and wife whom they deeply love was found deceased.”

“They had faith that their wife and mom would walk back into their lives again. The news is heartbreaking.”

The area where Suzanne’s remains were found is about 45 minutes from the mountain community of Maysville, where she lived with her family. 

She was reported missing by a neighbor after she went for a bike ride. Her bicycle was later found down a steep ravine off Chaffee County Road 225 from U.S. 50. Deputies said the bike didn’t look like it was involved in a crash and that there was no blood on the scene.  

In her car, investigators also found male DNA that corresponds with partial profiles found in three unsolved sexual assault cases. Barry Morphew’s DNA was not found in the DNA sample, according to his lawyers, KUSA-TV reported.

No other evidence linked to her has been found despite extensive searches in the three years she has been missing. 

UPDATE: This story was updated 8:17 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 28, to include comments from Barry Morphew’s lawyer Iris Eytan.

Olivia Prentzel covers breaking news and a wide range of other important issues impacting Coloradans for The Colorado Sun, where she has been a staff writer since 2021. At The Sun, she has covered wildfires, criminal justice, the environment,...