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Search teams find items belonging to missing Chaffee County woman; U.S. 50 closed through Monarch Pass Friday

suzanne morphew

SALIDA, Colo. (KRDO) - The Chaffee County Sheriff's Office widened its search area Friday as authorities spent a sixth day looking for missing Suzanne Morphew.

Morphew, 49, reportedly left her home in Maysville -- between Salida and Monarch -- to go on a bike ride Sunday, and never returned.

On Friday, search teams expanded their efforts to include a 20-mile stretch along Monarch Pass, closing it to traffic for most of the day before reopening it around 3:30 p.m.

The initial search area was around the junction of U.S. 50 and County Road 225 and Highway 50, west of Maysville, after investigators said they found several personal items of Morphew's Thursday that led to expanding the search area Friday.

"We can't talk about what we found," said Sheriff John Spezze during a media briefing. "But we didn't find her. We'll re-evaluate the search based on the information we've learned. Her husband is cooperating in the investigation. We're assuming she's still alive and we're not ruling anything out."

A trailhead and trail are located nearby. Authorities said Morphew is an avid biker who rode often.

Around 90 people searched a 2.5-mile area Friday area in an effort to locate any other items or clues that may lead to her whereabouts. Members of the Chaffee County Sheriff's Office, Colorado Bureau of Investigation and Federal Bureau of Investigation are working to launch a comprehensive search of the area in question.

The reward money for any information leading to Morphew's discovery has been doubled from $100,000 to $200,000. According to the Facebook group 'Find Suzanne Morphew', the reward was increased thanks to a large donation made from a friend of the Morphew family. The Colorado Bureau of Investigation has also provided a dedicated tip line for the case: 719-312-7530. You may also contact the Chaffee County Sheriff's Office at at 719-539-2596, or Chaffee County Crime Stoppers at 719-539-2599.

Spezze said authorities have received numerous tips on the hotline and his office's Facebook page has received at least 500,000 views.

"The biggest thing we're looking for is any information that anyone has," he said. "If they were in the area, if they see someone who looks like Suzanne, if they see anything important, call the tip line because you never know what it'll lead to. We appreciate any help we can get."

Spezze said he appreciates the many offers he has received for volunteer help, but that for this case he prefers to rely on experienced, trained personnel.

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  1. I hope she is found. We were on 50 Sunday. Lots of traffic. Hopefully she wasn’t hit by a vehicle and some idiot didn’t call for help. Prayers to family and all searchers.

    1. this is more than an accident-even though it might have started that way.
      My eyes are on the husband until he is cleared beyond doubt.

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