Colorado police have confirmed they are still searching for the body of Suzanne Morphew following her husband’s arrest for her murder – nearly a year after her disappearance and the release of a video in which he publicly pleaded for her return.
Barry Morphew, 52, was taken into custody on charges of first-degree homicide, tampering with evidence, and attempting to influence a public servant on Wednesday morning.
Suzanne, a 49-year-old mom of two, vanished without a trace on May 10 last year after reportedly setting off on a bike ride from the home she shared with Barry near Salida, in Chaffee County.
In a press conference held Wednesday evening, Chaffee County Sheriff John Spezze and District Attorney Linda Stanley defended their investigation amid criticism that it has taken almost 12 months for detectives to make an arrest.
The pair admitted that they do not know Suzanne’s cause of death, but implied that they have knowledge of an ‘incident’ that led to her killing.
Barry is currently being held in custody and will make his first court appearance tomorrow morning. DA Stanley confirmed that he has retained a lawyer.
Barry’s arrested affidavit remains sealed amid the ongoing investigation, but DA Stanley insisted that the case against him will be strong.
The husband of missing Colorado mom Suzanne Morphew has been charged with her murder almost one year after she vanished without trace on Mother’s Day. Barry and Suzanne together
In a press conference held Wednesday evening, Chaffee County Sheriff John Spezze and District Attorney Linda Stanley defended their investigation amid criticism that it has taken almost 12 months for detectives to make an arrest. They insist their case is strong despite the fact a body has not been recovered
Barry has long maintained his innocence, but his behavior has increasingly come under the spotlight in recent months. Suzanne’s own brother, Andrew Moorman, said he suspected his brother-in-law abducted and murdered his sister.
On May 17 – seven days after she went missing – Barry issued a bizarre video online pleading for his wife to come home and saying: ‘Honey, I love you and I want you back so bad.’
DailyMail.com later exclusively revealed that Morphew was at a hotel in Broomfield, Colorado, on the day of his wife’s disappearance and mysteriously left the room reeking of chlorine and covered in wet towels.
In March, he then sold off the home they shared for $1.62 million, after putting it on the market in October, months after it became a focus of the investigation.
Barry, who shared two adult daughters Mallory and Macy with Suzanne, also sold off a two-acre plot of land in Salida in February that he had bought just weeks after Suzanne disappeared.
This plot of land was dug up and searched in September when cadaver dogs picked up the scent of human remains there, DailyMail.com exclusively revealed at the time.
Her husband has long maintained his innocence, issuing a bizarre video online in the days after she went missing pleading with her to come home and saying: ‘Honey, I love you and I want you back so bad’ (above)
Barry and Suzanne pictured together with their daughters Mallory and Macy in a social media snap taken several years ago
It is not clear what developments in the case led to Barry’s arrest over her murder.
Court documents posted online show that all three charges are for offenses dated May 10 2020, the day Suzanne disappeared. This indicates police believe she was murdered that day.
If convicted of first-degree murder, Barry faces up to life in prison.
The Chaffee County Sheriff’s Office and the 11th Judicial District Attorney’s Office are expected to give what they have described as a ‘major announcement’ in the case at 3 pm local time Wednesday afternoon.
The sheriff’s office and the district attorney’s office declined to answer DailyMail.com’s request for information.
Suzanne’s sister Melinda Moorman told
Moorman said her first reaction was ‘relief’ to finally have answers over her sister’s disappearance as she said the family was ‘so grateful’ for the ‘tireless’ work of investigators on the case.
‘Today, justice is beginning for my sister. It’s been a journey that no one ever imagines that they’ll take,’ she said.
‘I want the world to know that my sister was the darling of our family. She was the rose among thorns. That’s what I used to call her.’
She added that she still loves her brother-in-law in a message to Suzanne’s daughters, as she said she wanted to tell them ‘I’m here for you.’
‘I love your dad even though he’s done a terrible thing,’ she said.
Barry has repeatedly tried to convince the public, authorities and Suzanne’s family that he had nothing to do with his wife’s disappearance.
He has also thrown out several theories as to her whereabouts including that an animal attacked her while she was on a bike ride, that she had gotten into an accident on the road or – later – that she had been abducted by an unknown assailant.
The 52-year-old has also taken aim at cops for ‘screwing up’ the investigation and shared private photos and love notes between the couple in an effort to prove his innocence.
Just days after she vanished, he posted an impassioned video on Facebook begging for her safe return.
‘Oh Suzanne, if anyone is out there and can hear this, that has you, please, we’ll do whatever it takes to bring you back. We love you, we miss you, your girls need you,’ Barry said in the video on May 17.
‘No questions asked, however much they want – I will do whatever it takes to get you back. Honey, I love you, I want you back so bad.’
Meanwhile, the couple’s two daughters have remained silent throughout the ordeal.
The family had relocated from Alexandria, Indiana, to Salida in the spring of 2018.
Court documents posted online show that all three charges are for offenses dated May 10 2020, the day Suzanne disappeared. This indicates police believe she was murdered that day
The missing poster of Suzanne Morphew after she disappeared back on May 10 2020
Barry has long insisted he had nothing to do with his wife’s disappearance but Suzanne’s brother has said he believes him responsible
Barry’s arrest comes almost one year to the day that Suzanne was last seen alive.
Suzanne was said to have been last seen by Barry, on the morning of Mother’s Day, May 10.
Barry claimed he left their home early and traveled to Denver for a landscaping job.
Officials were told Suzanne set out on a bike ride some time after his departure, but no eyewitnesses saw her out and police have never been able to confirm whether or not she went on a bike ride that day.
Suzanne was reported missing by a neighbor after her daughters Mallory and Macy were unable to contact her by phone when they were returning from an out-of-state camping trip.
Her bike was discovered abandoned on a rural track a short distance from her home later that day.
Barry said he drove back to their home later that day before the job had begun when he learned his wife was missing.
The mom-of-two – who previously worked as a middle-school teacher in Indiana – was last active on social media the day before her disappearance when she posted a picture to Facebook with her two daughters.
A huge search was launched to find Suzanne, involving over 100 law enforcement officials, multiple tracker dogs and dive teams combing through the land and waters near to the Morphews’ home.
But the hunt yielded no clues as to Suzanne’s whereabouts.
Barry pledged a $100,000 reward for any information that led to her safe return, which was matched by a family friend, bringing the reward total to $200,000.
Colorado police then revealed they had found a ‘personal item’ belonging to the missing mom around 500 meters from her home.
Later the same month, investigators carried out their first search on the home she shared with Barry. They were seen carrying evidence bags and equipment out of the property.
A map shows the distance between Morphew’s home and where a personal item belonging to the missing mom was discovered days after she vanished last May
MAY 2020: Police divers drafted in from neighboring Pueblo County were seen scouring a reservoir less than a mile from Suzanne’s property
MAY 2020: A dive team is seen searching a reservoir close to the home of missing mom Suzanne Morphew after her disappearance
MAY 2020: Her bike was found the same day by a bridge close to the Colorado home (pictured)
MAY 2020: Exclusive photos show cops carrying evidence bags and equipment into the Morphew’s $1.5 million three-bedroom home just outside Salida, Colorado
A three-day search was also carried out a residential building site in Salida, around 12 miles from the couple’s home, where Barry had been paid to lay dirt.
In July, investigators carried out a second search of the Morphew’s $1.5 million home.
DailyMail.com then exclusively revealed in September that Barry had spent the night before Suzanne was reported missing at a Holiday Inn hotel in Denver for a landscaping job – and left the room reeking of chlorine.
Barry’s co-worker Jeff Puckett told DailyMail.com he took over the hotel room on May 10 and found it scattered with wet towels and stinking of chlorine.
Puckett said he was ordered to Denver by Barry that morning but didn’t see him because he had already left ‘due to a family emergency’.
‘I got there Sunday night and the room smelled like chlorine real bad,’ he said.
‘It was his room and he’d taken a shower – his towels were all over the floor.’
The hotel confirmed to DailyMail.com that they do not use chlorine to clean guest rooms and had handed security footage from the weekend of May 9 to police.
Morphew posted this picture to Facebook with her two daughters the day before she disappeared
Suzanne has not been seen since May 10, and her family fears she may have met with foul play
Puckett also said he discovered a pile of mail in the room – including a letter about property insurance – and later turned it over to the FBI.
Police demanded security footage from businesses in the area close to the hotel between Thursday May 7 and Sunday May 10, DailyMail.com learned.
Barry fired back at the revelation in an interview with Fox 21 saying: ‘I did nothing wrong in the hotel. There’s cameras all over the hotel, I did nothing wrong.’
He admitted that the room smelled strongly of chlorine, but claimed he had nothing to do with the stench.
A landscaper hired by Barry to work with him that weekend also denied rumors she was having an affair with him.
Morgan Gentile did, however, say Barry was acting strangely at the time of his wife’s disappearance and said she was ‘scared’ of her former boss.
Also in September, DailyMail.com exclusively reported that the scent of human remains was detected twice by cadaver dogs near a plot of land owned by Barry.
Cadaver dogs had initially been brought to the spot by a team working with Suzanne’s brother Andrew Moorman.
Moorman raised $18,000 to fund a five-day search for his sister saying he suspected foul play in her disappearance.
A map showing the location of the Morphew home and the land where Barry was hired to lay dirt. Police searched the land last May
MAY 2020: FBI agents also searched a residential building site in Salida, around 12 miles from the couple’s home, where Barry had been paid to lay dirt
MAY 2020: A chunk of cement had been removed from the foundation of the property and an evidence response team truck was stationed nearby (pictured)
Barry pictured after his wife disappeared as CSI investigators arrived to search his home
Barry later sold off the plot of land in February.
He then sold the family home in Salida in March. The couple had lived at the home with their daughters since April 2018 when they moved from Indiana.
Barry claimed he was selling the home because Mallory and Macy were too scared to stay there because they believed it was the site of their mother’s abduction.
Suzanne’s brother has repeatedly hit out at Barry for his behavior following Suzanne’s mysterious vanishing, implicating him in her disappearance and saying he believes she was murdered on multiple occasions.
‘I don’t think she ever got on her bike. I think she probably died on May 9 and she was hidden somewhere that night… I’m afraid this is domestic abuse,’ Moorman previously told
He also told Dr. Phil he believed, ‘based on the behaviors and things that happened,’ that his sister was ‘abducted, and in this case, murdered’ at home.
‘I don’t think she was taken to a second location, I think it happened at home,’ he said, adding that he thought Barry was responsible.
Moorman also called on his brother-in-law to prove his innocence by agreeing to a lie detector test.
‘Take a voice analysis and a lie detector test and clear yourself,’ he urged.
But Barry blasted back in his interview with CBS 4 late last year, alleging that he had been a bad brother to Suzanne and had never shown any interest in her prior to her headline-hitting disappearance.
SEPTEMBER: DailyMail.com exclusively reported that the scent of human remains was detected twice by cadaver dogs near a plot of land owned by Barry (above)
SEPTEMBER: The FBI was then seen digging at the vacant site in Salida’s Longhorn Ranch district
SEPTEMBER: Cadaver dogs had initially been brought to the spot by a team working with Suzanne’s brother Andrew Moorman who raised $18,000 to fund a five-day search for his sister. Barry sold this land in February
SEPTEMBER: Barry sold this land in February after it was searched by authorities months earlier
‘I’ve spent many nights… [with] Suzanne crying on my shoulder, asking why her siblings refuse to show her love,’ Barry claimed.
Barry gave numerous interviews in the aftermath of his wife’s disappearance, denying any involvement.
‘This is the most devastating thing that has ever happened to me,’ Barry said in a phone conversation with
‘There is nothing that I am hiding. I have given three – 30 hours of testimony to the FBI and the CBI [Colorado Bureau of Investigation].
‘I’ve answered every question. Every single question,’ he said.
He also accused cops of ‘screwing up’ the investigation and ‘trying to cover it up and blame it on me.’
In October, Barry then released unseen photos and love letters penned by his missing wife in an apparent effort to portray their loving relationship.
A letter allegedly written by Suzanne on Valentine’s Day 2020 read: ‘Just want you to know – my life would be nothing without your love and the excitement you bring to our marriage and my life. All my love – Suzanne.’
Another letter from Suzanne to Barry read: ‘I remember the first kiss you gave me at my front door…. I remember the day you asked me to marry you when you gave me flowers at the pond… I remember the day you held me when I just found out I had cancer.’
DailyMail.com revealed in September that a co-worker of Barry’s took over his Holiday Inn hotel room (pictured) on May 10 and found it scattered with wet towels and stinking of chlorine
Barry and Suzanne are pictured on their wedding day in 1994. Suzanne’s family have presumed her dead according to her father’s obituary
Barry released love letters said to be penned by his missing wife as he continued to maintain his innocence
Barry also pushed several theories about her disappearance including that his wife may have been taken by a wild animal. He later said he believed she was abducted.
Meanwhile, a resident of Salida who lived next door to a home being built by Barry at the time of Suzanne’s disappearance said she was awoken by ‘a loud noise’ the night before she was reported missing.
The alarmed neighbor said the noise sounded like machinery or construction equipment and lasted ‘for about half an hour’.
Suzanne’s family previously revealed she was ‘presumed dead’ in her father’s obituary in November.
Gene Moorman, 87, passed away in French Lick on November 11 without any closure in the case of his daughter’s disappearance.
In lieu of flowers, Gene’s obituary asked mourners to make a donation to their local domestic violence organization.
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