Suzanne Morphew murder update: Autopsy of Colorado mom reveals homicide by tranquilizer chemicals

Suzanne Morphew smiling in a family pic
Suzanne Morphew was killed using tranquilizer drugs in May 2020. Pic credit: Chaffee County Sheriff’s Office

The authorities in El Paso County, Colorado, have released the results of an autopsy performed on the remains of Suzanne Morphew, showing that she died from a cocktail of drugs normally used to tranquilize animals.

Suzanne, 49, disappeared on Mother’s Day in May 2020 while supposedly riding her bicycle near her home in a rural area of Chaffee County, CO. Her body wasn’t found until September 2023, when it was located in Saguache County, south of Chaffee County.

The cops have long suspected her husband, Barry Morphew, was responsible for her death. He was initially charged with her murder, but the charges were dropped in April 2022 because the prosecution did not have enough evidence.

At the time, prosecutors expressed hope that Suzanne’s body would be found so they could proceed with the case against Morphew.

Yesterday, the El Paso County Coroner released their autopsy findings, stating that Suzanne was murdered by “unspecified means in the setting of butorphanol, azaperone, and medetomidine intoxication.”

The coroner also stated that these drugs are used to tranquilize animals, describing them “as a compounded injectable chemical immobilizer for wildlife providing pharmacologically reversible analgesia, sedation, and immobilization.”

Tranquilizer darts found at the Suzanne Morphew family home

During the initial investigation into Suzanne’s disappearance, the cops found a dart gun, empty darts, and a needle to inject tranquilizer chemicals into darts in Barry Morphew’s gun safe. However, they did not find any chemicals.

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Morphew has claimed that he used tranquilizer darts to collect antlers from deer without killing them.

Local news sources now state that they expect the police to reopen their investigation into Morphew.

Morphew’s legal team has released a couple of statements this week. Attorney Iris Eytan stated that the chemicals listed above are commonly used by Colorado ranchers, farmers, and hunters and suggested that the police should be tracking down everyone in the area who has authorized access to these drugs.

The use of tranquilizers for hunting is illegal in Colorado.

Chaffee County cops suspect Barry Morphew killed Suzanne Morphew

The investigators who found Suzanne’s bicycle in a ravine near her home have previously said they suspect the bike was placed there to make it look like she had an accident. They suspect Morphew killed his wife at their home.

The cops believe the Morphew couple, who were married for 25 years, had been having problems and that Suzanne was having an affair with a man in Michigan and wanted to separate.

There were 59 messages exchanged between Suzanne and her lover the day before she was murdered. The cops spoke with the man but concluded he had nothing to do with her disappearance.

The Chaffee County Sheriff’s Office asks that anyone with any information about the case should please call their tipline at 719-312-7530.

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