Judge grants motion to dismiss charges against Barry Morphew in wife Susanne Morphew’s disappearance

In a high-profile case that has already noticed a lot of and once in a while abnormal twists and turns during the last two years, together with maximum not too long ago, a very powerful judicial sanctions, a pass judgement on agreed to push aside all fees in opposition to Barry Morphew, with out prejudice, simply 9 days prior to he used to be to face trial for the first-degree homicide of his spouse and mom in their two daughters, Suzanne Morphew

Prosecutors, who can re-file fees at some point, filed a movement to push aside the indictment mins prior to a pre-trial convention on April 19, 2022, with DA Linda Stanley writing they want to examine additional and imagine “we’re as regards to finding the sufferer’s frame.”  Stanley additionally cited the court docket’s resolution to exclude “a number of key professional witnesses to start with recommended.  With out this a very powerful proof and with out the sufferer’s frame, the Folks can not transfer ahead presently in excellent religion.”

Barry Morphew and daughters
Barry Morphew, along his daughters, walks out of the Fremont County Courthouse in Colorado, a unfastened guy in the end fees in opposition to him are brushed aside on April 19, 2022.


“First I wish to say that Mr. Morphew now not best used to be presumed blameless and nonetheless is presumed blameless, he’s blameless,” Morphew’s lawyer, Iris Eytan, stated at a press convention after the fees have been dropped.  In accordance with the State pointing to the want to in finding Suzanne’s frame, she stated, “Eternally they have got mentioned that they are not looking for a frame — {that a} frame is inappropriate.  However you wish to have to understand, that on this case, there was now not a unmarried ounce of bodily proof that has been discovered connecting Mr. Morphew to this … alleged crime.”

Since Barry Morphew’s arrest, his protection lawyers had requested Pass judgement on Ramsey Lama, more than one instances, to push aside the fees in opposition to him. Over the last a number of months, they pressed the pass judgement on to factor serious sanctions at the prosecution for failing to show over doubtlessly exculpatory proof forward of trial.  And the pass judgement on imposed harmful sanctions, together with barring 11 in their 16 recommended professional witnesses — amongst others, professionals in DNA, car information and a mobile phone information analyst, as punishment for violating discovery laws. In all, the Courtroom excluded 14 of the prosecution’s professional witnesses.  The pass judgement on discovered that DA Stanley and her workforce many times overlooked points in time and failed to show over vital data, writing, “The Folks’s movements quantity to negligent and arguably, reckless omit” for his or her discovery duties.

In previous filings, prosecutors stated that the Courtroom didn’t in finding willful misconduct related to any discovery violations, noting “in the long run the sanctions imposed very much injury the Folks’s case, tantamount to dismissal, for overdue disclosures that weren’t very much prejudicial, however somewhat technical in nature.”

“48 Hours” correspondent Peter Van Sant updates the case in “The Suzanne Morphew Case: Not anything is What It Turns out,” airing Saturday, April 30 at 9/8c on CBS and streams on Paramount+.

When Suzanne Morphew, a Colorado mom of 2 ladies, vanished on Mom’s Day in Might 2020, government puzzled if she’d been kidnapped or if her husband Barry — whom she had threatened to divorce — may have killed her.

Investigators by no means anticipated the case would have such a lot of abnormal twists and turns and ultimately contain a chipmunk alibi, a tranquilizer gun, a “speaking” truck, thriller DNA and a secret agent pen proper out of a James Bond movie.

“This example is amazingly distinctive,” says Aya Gruber, a regulation professor on the College of Colorado at Boulder. “While you began to dig a bit of bit deeper, not anything is what it sort of feels.”

Barry and Susanne Morphew
Barry and Susanne Morphew


Gruber studied 1000’s of pages of public paperwork from the prosecutor, investigators and protection lawyers.

Suzanne used to be reported lacking on Might 10, 2020. She’d been by myself that day as a result of her daughters, Macy, 16, and Mallory, 20, have been off on a church-sponsored tenting shuttle and deliberate to go back house later that Mom’s Day.

On the identical time, Barry Morphew informed investigators he had left the house early within the morning to force to a task web page some 3 hours away. He stated the closing time he noticed his spouse of 25 years used to be when she used to be sound asleep of their mattress. 

After Suzanne used to be formally reported lacking via a neighbor, investigators started to inspect Barry’s tale. Buddies and relations informed investigators that the wedding used to be afflicted, and brokers discovered a deleted textual content from Suzanne to Barry on his telephone that learn: “I am finished. I may care much less what you might be as much as and feature been for years. We simply want to determine this out politely.”

However 10 days after Suzanne disappeared, brokers have been pulled in a special course once they discovered a so-called secret agent pen belonging to Suzanne. The secret agent pen has a protracted battery existence and is designed to appear and write like an atypical pen.

Nevertheless it has one additional characteristic: it’s voice-activated and information conversations. Suzanne had received it, she informed a chum, as a result of she suspected Barry used to be having an affair and she or he was hoping to make use of the pen to collect proof. However the plan backfired.

Investigators listened to what the pen had recorded and, even supposing there used to be no proof of Barry having an affair, they are saying they heard “intimate” conversations between Suzanne and somebody named Jeff.

It used to be any other twist in a case stuffed with them.

With out figuring out who Jeff used to be or his location when Suzanne went lacking, they may now not get rid of him as an individual or passion. It took FBI brokers six months prior to they exposed his identification: Jeff Libler, a person each Suzanne and Barry knew from their Alexandria, Indiana, highschool. Jeff and Suzanne had had a one-time fling after commencement, and she or he’d reached out to him in 2018 after the Morphews moved to Colorado with a Fb message that learn merely: “Good day stranger.”

“And from that second they’d talked virtually each and every unmarried day nonstop,” stated Ashley Franco, a reporter for KKTV, the CBS associate in Colorado Springs, who has lined the tale from the start.

That used to be sufficient to ignite a just about two-year love affair. Jeff had a spouse and 6 kids. He lived in Michigan and claimed to be there along with his circle of relatives at the day Suzanne vanished.

Brokers ultimately found out the fans had spoken to one another for dozens of hours, frequently speaking by way of secret accounts on WhatsApp and LinkedIn. Jeff additionally admitted that they met for romantic rendezvous in New Orleans, Florida, Texas, Michigan and Indiana.

After Suzanne disappeared in Might 2020, Jeff didn’t touch government. As an alternative, brokers say, he deleted the accounts the place he had communicated with Suzanne.

“What he did used to be delete all his social media accounts that he had used to be in contact with Suzanne,” says Gruber. “He is were given so much to lose if revelations of this affair pop out.”

Jeff reportedly informed brokers he didn’t wish to tarnish Suzanne’s reminiscence, however he additionally informed them he apprehensive that he’d lose his spouse, kids and process. He additionally apprehensive he could be regarded as a suspect. “He asks the brokers, ‘Am I a goal?'” says Gruber.

After brokers faced him, he did cooperate, offering a pattern of his DNA and passwords to the deleted accounts. Investigators ultimately have been ready to retrace the couple’s steps and recovered texts via tapping into the iCloud accounts of Jeff and Suzanne.

Jeff used to be ready to offer receipts for a household items retailer he’d visited in Michigan at the day Suzanne vanished and he used to be ultimately cleared.

Investigators nonetheless had their suspicions about Barry Morphew. They by no means exposed any proof that he used to be having an affair, however investigators discovered his movements on that Mom’s Day weekend to be suspicious.

Morphew property
Mobile phone information seem to turn Barry Morphew’s telephone pinging all over the area on Might 9. When requested about this strange telephone task, Barry informed investigators he used to be operating across the assets capturing chipmunks, which Barry says have been a continuing nuisance.

Chaffee County District Courtroom

They requested Barry why his telephone gave the impression to be pinging throughout his area at the day prior to Mom’s Day and he informed them he should had been out capturing chipmunks, which he stated have been a continuing nuisance on the area.

It used to be most likely the arena’s first chipmunk alibi, however Barry stood via it, announcing he’d shot 85 chipmunks within the two years he owned that Colorado area.

“After which that confession to capturing chipmunks turns into a big piece of incriminating proof in opposition to him,” says Gruber.

Van Sant requested why. “As a result of [agents are] announcing, ‘Smartly, you realize, now he is admitting to having run round the home. And this can be a ridiculous rationalization, so it should be the rationale of a responsible particular person,'” says Gruber.

What is extra, there used to be no proof of any chipmunk shootings round the home and neighbors didn’t recall listening to any form of disturbance all the way through that time period.

Circumstances once in a while flip at the smallest of items and, on this case, brokers seized upon simply this sort of small merchandise.

Morphew evidence
Investigators found out this transparent plastic needle cap within the Morphew circle of relatives’s dryer.

Chaffee County District Courtroom

Brokers had discovered a small transparent plastic cap within the circle of relatives’s dryer that they believed used to be from a syringe used to inject chemical substances right into a tranquilizer dart. Barry stated he knew find out how to inject chemical substances right into a dart and that he’d shot many deer for trophies and so he may get their antlers. His storage used to be stuffed with deer heads and a pile of antlers. On the other hand, there used to be no running tranquilizer gun present in the house and government say Barry’s DNA used to be now not on that plastic cap.

Even so, investigators advanced a concept that Barry had shot Suzanne with a tranquilizer gun after which chased her round the home prior to she handed out. They discovered a door body that used to be damaged and suspected there have been a disagreement.

Brokers additionally tapped into a brand new investigative instrument known as virtual car forensics. They pulled information from his Ford truck’s many computer systems and were given the truck to “communicate” to them. They realized that once Barry stated he used to be sound asleep, the truck’s doorways have been opening and shutting.

He used to be arrested and charged with first-degree homicide and different crimes in Might 2021. Suzanne’s frame has now not been discovered and prosecutors presume she is useless. Barry ultimately pleaded “now not responsible.”

However on the 11th hour, there used to be yet one more twist printed for the 1st time publicly at a initial listening to to resolve if there used to be sufficient proof for possible motive. 

Prosecutors admitted at a listening to held in the summertime of 2021 that their very own forensics workforce had exposed DNA proof that threatened to damage their case in opposition to Barry. State technicians had discovered DNA at the glove compartment of Suzanne’s automobile that partly matched an unknown male hooked up to a few unsolved sexual attack circumstances in 3 other towns. 

Barry Morphew and Jeff Libler have been excluded from that DNA pattern which intended there used to be an opportunity Suzanne had fallen into the fingers of a sexual predator. “This DNA discovery is so vital,” Gruber stated. “Abruptly, the apparently incredible turns into extra conceivable.”

Pass judgement on Patrick Murphy wwas candid in his review of the case, announcing it will move both manner prior to a jury. He discovered sufficient possible motive to place it over for trial however ordered that Barry be launched on $500,000 bond, looking at that he concept there used to be now not “an even chance” that Barry can be convicted via a jury. Barry entered a plea of now not responsible to the fees.

Barry Morphew raised the bond cash and is unfastened looking ahead to trial.  Pass judgement on Murphy disqualified himself as a result of a possible struggle of passion involving a witness, and Pass judgement on Ramsey Lama used to be appointed in January 2022.  Morphew’s trial, which used to be moved from Chaffee to Fremont County, Colorado, used to be scheduled to start on April 28. 

Then, on April 19, Stanley and her workforce filed the movement to drop all fees, with out prejudice, till they collect extra proof.  However Morphew’s lawyer, Iris Eytan, argued that the case will have to be brushed aside with prejudice in order that it can not be refiled.  The court docket brushed aside the fees with out prejudice.

On the press convention out of doors court docket, Eytan made it transparent her opinion that her consumer will have to by no means had been charged. 

“Those fees have been false from the start … The prosecution used to be production a homicide case,” she stated.  “You’ve gotten noticed presentations known as ‘Creating a Assassin?’ That is what used to be taking place right here on this court docket … They completely brushed aside this situation at this level as a result of they knew they have been going to lose this trial and Mr. Morphew used to be going to be acquitted and exonerated.”

“Barry Morphew loves Suzanne Morphew,” Eytan stated. “He loves her and he misses her and he needs to understand the place Suzanne Morphew is.  It is a giant query mark … Unquestionably there used to be now not any proof, even as regards to convicting him of homicide of his spouse.”

As investigators proceed looking for Suzanne Morphew’s frame, specializing in a “far off and mountainous area close by the Morphew place of dwelling,” because the DA wrote in her movement, looking ahead to 5 toes of snow to soften prior to they are able to safely excavate the realm, Barry Morphew, along his daughters, walked out of the Fremont County courthouse a unfastened guy. With all fees in opposition to him dropped, his bond is lifted, his GPS ankle observe got rid of, and his passport returned.  And about 1,000 individuals who have been summoned to seem for jury variety are launched.    

Leave a Comment