A motions hearing in the Barry Morphew case Tuesday drew testimony from three Colorado Bureau of Investigation agents.

Defense attorneys Iris Eytan and Dru Neilsen had filed a broad motion regarding discovery they said had not been released to the defense by law enforcement and the district attorney’s office.

More specifically, forensic discovery from Suzanne Morphew’s vehicle was under scrutiny as defense attorneys attempted to show that law enforcement failed to provide discovery of exculpatory evidence to the defense.

Most of the testimony concerned a piece of DNA evidence that was entered into the FBI’s Combined DNA Index System database.

CBI Agent Megan Duge of the bureau’s forensic biology section and Agent Caitlin Rogers, a forensic serologist and DNA analyst, testified to the existence of DNA evidence from the glove box of the vehicle and its entry into CODIS.

The sample generated three partial matches from Tempe, Arizona, Phoenix, Arizona, and Chicago, Illinois, related to other offenses.

That information was then shared with several agents, including Agent  Joe Cahill, who was also questioned during the proceedings. 

Eytan alleged the information regarding DNA and communications was not shared properly with the defense.

Eytan also questioned the sharing of transcripts of emails and texts between law enforcement entities and experts, alleging many of those had not been discovered to the defense either.

Upon being questioned about those communications, Cahill said he was initially unaware that those files needed to be preserved as discovery, but there is now a protocol in place to do so.

Deputy District Attorney Mark Hurlbert said the DA’s office requested the defense file a motion identifying what discovery the defense was missing, and the office would take steps to make sure it was shared.

Among items the defense expressed concern about were:

• District attorney and law enforcement reports and opinions of experts related to DNA, CODIS and matches.

• Emails and text messages related to the case.

• DA and law enforcement interviews with witnesses.

• Follow-up lab reports sent to the DA. 

• Information about a Hewlett-Packard laptop.

• Communications about the Chaffee County Sheriff’s Office positioning a game camera near the former Morphew residence and surveillance footage.

A separate motion to charge the Chaffee County sheriff with contempt was denied.

The motions hearing was continued until 1 p.m. Dec. 14, by which time attorneys on both sides plan to meet to discuss the items requested by the defense. 

Eleventh Judicial District Chief Judge Patrick Murphy advised Eytan to file a motion more specific to the issues that needed to be addressed, so as not to waste time in future motions hearings.

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