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Almost six months after Suzanne Morphew disappeared, her husband, Barry Morphew—who has been accused of killing her—fraudulently submitted a presidential ballot in her name, authorities allege.
In addition to charges of first-degree murder, Barry is now also facing new charges of felony forgery of public records and a misdemeanor elections-mail ballot offense after he allegedly tried to cast an extra vote for former President Donald Trump in his wife’s name, according to an arrest warrant obtained by Oxygen.com.
Chafee County clerk Lori Mitchell called the Chafee County Sheriff’s Office on Oct. 22 to report a case of alleged voter fraud. The clerk reported receiving a presidential ballot from Suzanne Morphew, although the mother of two had been missing since May 2020.
“I felt I should contact the sheriff when I saw the name,” Mitchell told the local news show “Next with Kyle Clark,” according to KUSA. “It was stunning to see that ballot in our batches.”
The ballot did not have Suzanne’s signature next to the “Voter’s Signature Required” section of the ballot, but it did have a witness signature from Barry and listed the couple’s address in Salida, Colorado, according to the warrant.
Photo: Chaffee County Sheriff's Office
Deputies photographed the ballot and seized it as evidence.
Months later, on April 22, Federal Bureau of Investigation agents questioned Barry about why he had submitted a ballot in his wife’s name.
“Just because I wanted Trump to win,” Barry allegedly responded, according to the court documents.
He went on to tell investigators that he “just thought it would give (Trump) an extra vote” and believed it was the vote his wife would likely have cast if she had not disappeared months earlier.
“I know she was going to vote for Trump anyway,” he said.
When the FBI agents asked him whether he realized it was illegal to try to cast the vote, he allegedly responded, “I didn’t know you couldn’t do that for your spouse,” according to the warrant.
Suzanne vanished on Mother’s Day weekend in 2020.
She was reported missing on May 10, 2020 after the couple’s daughters—who had been away on a camping trip—asked a neighbor to check on their mother when they were unable to reach her. Suzanne’s bike was discovered abandoned in a ravine later that night.
Although her body has never been discovered, the Chafee County Sheriff’s Office announced earlier this month that Barry had been charged with first-degree murder, tampering with physical evidence and attempt to influence a public servant in his wife’s disappearance.
Barry was advised of the new charges against him related to the alleged voter fraud in a virtual hearing last week, KXRM-TV reports. His bond for the additional charges is $1,000, however, he remains in custody in the Chaffee County Detention Facility without bond in connection to the murder charges against him.