Suzanne Morphew’s remains found in Saguache County 3 years after disappearance

The remains of Suzanne Morphew have been found. The Chaffee County woman has been missing since Mother’s Day of 2020. 

Agents with the Colorado Bureau of Investigation say they came across her remains near Moffat in Saguache County during an unrelated search last week. The remains were identified as Morphew by the El Paso County Coroner Wednesday. 

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

Specific information about the location of the remains was not shared. Twelfth Judicial District DA Anne Kelly has been notified. 

“Although locating Suzanne’s remains is a critical component of this investigation, and for her family, we are left with many more questions than answers, and it would be a disservice to conduct a news conference at this time,” said Sheriff Spezze.

No arrests have been made and the investigation into her death is ongoing. Criminal charges against Morphew's husband, Barry, were dropped last year.

Morphew, the mother of two daughters, disappeared on May 10, 2020, in the Salida area. A few days later, investigators found an item possibly belonging to the 49-year-old woman, but several searches that included waterways did not turn up a body.

A week after she went missing, Barry Morphew posted a video on Facebook pleading for her safe return.

“No questions asked, however much they want, I will do whatever it takes to get you back,” he said.

Andy Moorman, Suzanne Morphew’s brother, announced in mid-September he was recruiting volunteers to conduct an independent search.

“I need to find her, need to bring her home, give her a proper burial and closure for my family,” he told KMGH-TV before the Sept. 24 search began. “And that’s my point. I’m not about finding somebody guilty or trying to inflict punishment on anyone. That’s not my job. That’s the law enforcement’s job.”

Suzanne Morphew deeply loved her two daughters and had a passion for life, Spezze said.

“I believe people like Suzanne are a rare find and those who knew her were indeed very lucky,” he said.

In May of 2021, Barry Morphew was arrested on suspicion of first-degree murder and other charges in connection with his wife's disappearance. The arrest was the result of an ongoing investigation that has come to include more than 135 searches across Colorado and interviews of over 400 people in multiple states, Chaffee County Sheriff John Spezze said.

However, prosecutors dropped charges against Morphew last year just as he was about to go on trial. A judge found they had repeatedly failed to follow rules for turning over evidence that could have helped his case, and barred prosecutors from calling most of their key witnesses. That potentially exculpatory evidence included DNA linked to sexual assault cases in other states that raised the possibility of a different person being involved.

In an interview with “Good Morning America,” Barry Morphew said authorities in Colorado have been wrong to focus on him as the person responsible for Suzanne's death.

“They’ve got tunnel vision and they looked at one person, and they’ve got too much pride to say they’re wrong and look somewhere else,” he said, sitting between his adult daughters, who have defended him.

The FBI is asking for information at (719) 312-7530.

This is a developing story.

Editor’s Note: An early version of this story misattributed the agency that found the remains.