The Chaffee County man accused of killing his missing wife was charged Tuesday with tampering with a body and possessing an illegal short rifle in addition to the first-degree murder charge and other counts he faces in the case.
Prosecutors believe Barry Morphew, 53, killed his wife, Suzanne Morphew, 48, sometime between May 9 and May 10, 2020, according to a complaint filed in the case Tuesday.
Suzanne was reported missing by a neighbor after she failed to return from a bike ride on May 10, and her disappearance prompted an extensive, year-long search before authorities brought the charges against her husband. Her body has not been found.
In addition to first-degree murder, Morphew is accused of destroying, mutilating, concealing, removing or altering his wife’s body in an attempt to avoid arrest, according to the complaint.
He also is charged with tampering with evidence, possessing an illegal short rifle, and attempting to influence public servants. The details of the evidence against Morphew remain unclear because the arrest affidavit in the case has been sealed.
He has maintained his innocence, and in the days after Suzanne went missing, he recorded a video in which he pleaded for her safe return. Morphew’s attorney did not immediately return a request for comment Tuesday.
In a separate criminal case, Morphew was charged with filling out his missing wife’s mail in ballot and casting her vote for former President Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election.
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