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Charlottesville, VA– Morgan Harrington, 20, a striking blonde junior at Virginia Tech has seemingly vanished.
On Saturday October 17th at 8:48PM, BF to Morgan, Sara Snead, spoke with her friend for the last time.
Turn The Page
By all accounts, Morgan Dana Harrington is a regular girl, with irregular charm and beauty. Out of “The 9”, the name she and her 8 bff’s called their clique, she was the one to wear red to their Sr. Prom when the rest of them chose to wear white.
The daughter of Medical executives Dr. Dan and Gilbert (French Canadian pronounced Jil -Bare) Harrington; Morgan is an education major in her junior year at VT.
Morgan proudly displayed her Metallica tickets on the family Sub Zero a full 6 months prior to that Saturday’s concert. A few days before the event, Morgan brought 3 outfits home to try on for Mom’s feedback and approval.
“She was excited about the concert,” Gil announced to Nancy Grace, “and she brought home three outfits that she tried on for me. We chose one, and she said, ‘Mama, it is a rock concert, so it is probably not what you would choose, but is this one okay?’ It was cute, and she was covered, and I said, ‘That will do fine.’”< ?xml:namespace prefix ="" o />
“You know,” adds the mother– aware that her daughter’s attire has come under fire– “you have to give your kid wings.”
“Ms. Harrington,” replied Grace, “you did something right because there are not a lot of 20-year-olds who would ask their mom what they thought of the outfit she was wearing to a concert.”
When Morgan and Amy Melvin, roomie at VT in their off campus Blacksburg apartment arrived in Crozet to pick up Amy Snead and her boyfriend for the evenings event, Morgan called Dr. Harrington, or Poppa, as she affectionately called him, to notify her parents of their safe arrival.
She was due to study for her math test with him as well as reconcile her check book she had recently overdrawn, at noon the following day. When morgan did not show Dr and Mrs. Harrington began calling her friends.
Nothing Else Matters
Like most missing persons cases of young adults, Morgan was thought to potentially be a runaway. Her own parents in an effort to reduce their building panic considered perhaps she had met a new boy and was extending the weekend. They wish she had.
It is unclear why Morgan’s friends did not report her missing when they arrived back in Crozet and Morgan’s car was there along with her keys, untouched. But what is clear, is Morgan’s family and friends are no longer mincing words; they believe Morgan was abducted and has met with foul play.
There is a saying in missing persons cases initial analysis:
Start the clock backwards from the discovery of your best evidence.
Unfortunately, the best evidence in this case was not discovered as tied to a missing persons case; Morgan’s purse, wallet and cell phone found the morning of the 18th were given to local Police as a property recovery.
What your thinking is accurate. Any prints, DNA, compromised.
However, the cell phone had the battery removed. H U G E.
Who dumps a purse and a cell at the verifiable last location of a victim?
Someone familiar with cell pings and tracking, and someone who wants you to think this a local and random act.
8:30 p.m. – Outside John Paul Jones Arena
8:48 p.m. – Friend called Morgan’s cell phone
9:00 p.m. – Seen in University Hall parking lot adjacent to JPJ
9:10 p.m. – Near Davenport Field RV Park and UVA Track
9:20 p.m. – On Copeley Bridge near intersection with Ivy Road
Rader says, “We know we don’t have all the information there is in Charlottesville about this case.”
He urges anyone who saw anything outside the Metallica concert between 8:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. to call police. Police are concentrating on what happened outside the arena.
Around 8:30 p.m., witnesses saw someone matching Morgan description at the ticket counter outside JPJ, trying to get back in the concert after she ended up outside.
At 8:48 p.m., a friend of Morgan’s inside the arena called her on her cell phone asking if she was OK. Morgan apparently told her friend not to worry as she was going to get a ride from friends in Charlottesville.
Around 9 p.m., witnesses saw Morgan walking and carrying her black purse with backpack straps in the parking lot outside University Hall.
Ten minutes later, Morgan made her way to the RV parking area near the UVA track. On the night of the concert, that area would have been filled with RVs.
Witnesses saw Morgan there around 9:10 p.m., but they said they left about ten minutes later, leaving her in the parking area alone. The morning after the concert, a passerby found Morgan’s purse on the ground.
The last known sighting of Morgan Harrington was on the Copeley Road bridge near Ivy Road at 9:30 p.m.
Police believe people driving or walking along the bridge must have seen Morgan after that time. They believe she may have gotten into a car.
“Perhaps you saw someone stop a vehicle to discuss something with this young lady. That would be important. Perhaps you saw this lady get into a vehicle. That would be important,” says Rader.
The new time line explains why police spent so much time in the Copeley Road area looking for clues. Now, they’re revealing where she was with the hope that someone will know where she is.
Morgan’s parents did not appear the Wednesday news conference, but have said they believe she was taken by a stranger and that foul play was involved.
Police are asking any witnesses to come forward. They say every detail counts, and since the Copeley bridge is well traveled on Saturday nights, they hope to jog people’s memories of the night of October 17.
People can submit tips anonymously by calling the Virginia State Police at 434-352-3467.
The body found does not appear to be Morgan, but a young woman with dark hair and dark eyes.