CHAFFEE COUNTY, Colo. — Judge Patrick Murphy has ruled Barry Morphew’s case will be bound over to trial and while awaiting trial he can post a cash-only bond of $500,000. He is charged with first-degree murder of his wife, Suzanne Morphew who disappeared on Mother’s Day weekend in 2020. Her body hasn’t been found but she is presumed dead.
The arrest affidavit will also be released and should be posted online on the Colorado Judicial Branch website at noon on Monday, Sept. 20.
The bond could be posted by Monday, Sept. 20. He is required to surrender his passport and guns. He must be in attendance at every hearing and must wear an ankle monitor which will alert the court if he tries to leave Chaffee County.
Judge Patrick Murphy has ruled that the prosecution did not meet the burden of proof evident, presumption great so the court is obliged to set a bond on Morphew, as per the Colorado Constitution.
The State of Colorado asked for a $10 million, cash-only bond to be placed on Barry Morphew.
The trial is set for May 3 until June 1 of 2022. Morphew entered a not-guilty plea on on Friday, Sept. 17.
Deputy D.A. has said, “The ‘I’m done’ text from Suzanne is pathetic words by Mrs. Morphew…the state asks that you bind the defendant over and hold him without bond.”
UPDATE: Sean Connelly is the defense’s new attorney; Dan Edwards is a new attorney on the stateside. Judge Patrick Murphy is limiting the arguments to 20 minutes for each side. After each side argues, the judge is expected to decide whether Morphew will go to trial or be let out of jail on bond.
Attorney Edwards has taken the stand and is talking about Probable Cause. He has ten minutes and then Deputy District Attorney Jeff Lindsay will receive his 10 minutes.
ORIGINAL: CHAFFEE COUNTY, Colo. — A Chaffee County judge will make a ruling on Friday whether a man accused of killing his wife will go to trial or be let out of jail on bond.
53-year-old Barry Morphew faces five felony charges including first-degree murder for the death of his wife Suzanne. He is currently being held without bond in the Chaffee County Jail.
Suzanne Morphew, 49, was reported missing over Mother’s Day weekend in 2020. During a press conference in May 2021, Chaffee County Sheriff John Spezze said that although no body has been recovered, his “belief is that Suzanne is not alive at this time.”
Before Judge Patrick Murphy will make a ruling, both the defense and prosecution will have a chance to give closing arguments. Judge Murphy is also expected to make a decision on whether or not the 130-page arrest affidavit will be unsealed. Morphew is expected to be in court at 1:30 p.m.
To catch up on all the details revealed in court, review FOX21’s previous stories:
- Preliminary Hearing Day 4: Judge will decide in September if Barry Morphew’s case will go to trial
- Preliminary Hearing Day 3: ‘Did you ever find the journal? No’; Evidence discovered inside Suzanne Morphew’s home released
- Preliminary Hearing Day 2: “I’m done,” Texts between Suzanne and Barry Morphew reveal troubled marriage
- Preliminary Hearing Day 1: ‘Cannot live my life without you in it,’ messages reveal Suzanne Morphew had an affair before her disappearance
In anticipation of a large crowd on Friday, additional seats will be available at the Chaffee County Fairgrounds. The courtroom can only fit approximately 24 people. According to the judge’s order, Morphew’s court appearance will only be live-streamed for immediate family members and at the Fairgrounds which is located at 10165 County Road 120 in Poncha Springs.
Morphew was arrested without incident on May 5. Morphew hired two attorney’s Iris Eytan and Dru Nielsen. They have asked for a bond three times for their client, but have been denied. Morphew has maintained his innocence. Morphew faces seven charges:
- Murder in the first degree
- Tampering with a deceased human body
- Tampering with physical evidence
- Possession of a dangerous weapon – short rifle
- Attempt to influence a public servant
- Forgery of Public Records
- Misdemeanor Elections-mail ballot offense
FOX21’s Lauren Scharf will be in the courtroom providing to-the-minute updates. You can follow her updates here.