As the world waits to learn more about Morgan Harrington’s official cause of death, the support for the Harrington family keeps growing. On Friday night, many friends from the virtual world gathered in front of the Harrington’s home to honor Morgan with a candlelight vigil on Friday night. Internet tools like Facebook, Twitter, and Morgan’s website were the same some of the places supporters organized an effort for Morgan and her family. Many people who gathered at the Harrington household in the cold say they never met Morgan in person, only to know her by her beautiful pictures and words from her family and friends, but their souls were touched by her spirit.
Last week, police confirm remains found on a Virginia farm are in fact those of Morgan Harrington. I spoke to State Police officials today, and they say they are working to determine Morgan’s cause and time of death. I spoke with the Medical Examiner’s in Richmond last week, and they say in normal cases an autopsy to include toxicology reports normally take 24 hours, but in this case, it could take weeks. State police investigators were at the ME’s office later last week working with the pathologists as they took x-rays and gathered information. Authorities are on the farm for days conducting a grid search, and gathering as much evidence as they could. Police say Morgan’s body could have been on the farm for as many as 100 days.
I spoke with Nancy Bass, owner of the Anchorage farm for more than 30 years, and she says the area where Morgan’s body was found is not accessible by vehicle. Nancy and her husband David have an SUV, and there’s no way they could get down there. If it wasn’t for David on the tractor yesterday checking fences, Morgan may have never been found. David spoke out and said as soon as he saw the remains he instantly thought of Morgan. I asked Nancy about the hunters on her property, and she says when they first moved on the farm they did not allow hunting, but because of the trespassing, they decided to allow hunters assigned to different areas hoping that would keep an eye on things. Nancy says the main gate on the property is always open, it is never locked, but the pasture where Morgan was found is closer to a subdivision, only about 30 feet away. However Morgan got to that location may have been through the housing development which isn’t too far of a walk. The Bass family owns more than 700 acres total, and the farm is only a few miles away from interstate 64. Police say the hayfield was cut in August, and Morgan’s body could have been there any time after mid-October when she went missing. Although investigators say they have not searched this area because they didn’t have a need to, I spoke with the CUE center for Missing Persons and they had a search scheduled with Morgan’s family and 1,600 volunteers at the end of this month.
The State Police told me today the red digital camera Morgan was carrying the night she went missing still hasn’t been found. It is a Sony or Kodak. This case is still not considered a homicide until the official findings from the ME’s office are released.
Investigators say Morgan vanished on October 17, 2009 while attending a concert outside the John Paul Jones arena in Virginia. She got separated from friend around 8:30 p.m., called them inside, and said she was finding a ride home. State police officials report Morgan was last seen by the ticket office on the University Hall side of the building. The band, Metallica, early on donated $50,000 of their own money to this reward fund. On the weekend of November 6, 2009, The Laura Recovery center helped to organized a three day search for Morgan, volunteers from all over assisted with this amazing effort.
According to a Virginia State Police press release: “During the course of the investigation, police have been able to establish a timeline of Miss Harrington’s movements once she ended up outside of the arena at approximately 8:30 p.m. After talking to her friends on her cell phone, she then walked through the parking lot of University Hall and was also seen in the Lannigan Field athlete parking lot, which is also used for RV parking. At around 9:30 p.m., she was seen walking on the Copeley Road bridge near Ivy Road.”
According to Virginia State police, based off independent witness accounts, investigators believe on October 17, 2009 (the night Morgan Harrington went missing) that she was hitchhiking along Copeley Road Bridge. Investigators are now searching for a vehicle they believe stopped in the middle of the bridge and possibly picked up Morgan. Also, investigators need the public’s help to finding a young woman the night of the Metallica concert that may have loaned her cell phone to Morgan.
Virginia State Police have a tip line, please call them with any information: (434) 352-3467 or send them an e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org