When your case is the only recent and active missing person case in your city, you would think that the first person that comes to mind when a body was found was you. Unfortunately for (now deceased) Cassandra Morton, this was not the case.
Research Google News for “Cassandra Morton” and you will find that most articles written on a body being found in Campbell County referred first to missing white woman Morgan Harrington from Roanoke rather than Cassandra Morton who is from Lynchburg where the body was found.
“The clothes, Guthrie added, did not match the description of those worn by Harrington when she disappeared from a rock concert in Charlottesville on Oct. 17. Harrington, 20, was last seen wearing a black T-shirt, black miniskirt , black boots and black tights, with a Swarovski crystal necklace made up of large crystal chain links. Guthrie said investigators have “no reason to believe” the body is Harrington’s.”
“Virginia Tech student and Roanoke resident Morgan Harrington’s disappearance from a Charlottesville concert in October has been widely reported. Two others have recently been reported missing from Lynchburg, he said. Cassandra Ann Morton, 23, was last seen in Lynchburg on Oct. 10. A student at Lynchburg College from Pittsylvania County also was reported missing recently, the sheriff said.”
“This story is generating a lot of interest from media outlets around the state. A crew from Richmond has shown up believing the remains could be those of Virginia Tech student Morgan Harrington. The sheriff tells me they are too decomposed to be Harrington’s and the victim’s victim’s clothing does not match what Harrington was last seen wearing. Still, state police tell us they have followed up on the discovery, just as they have with any other unidentified remains that have been recovered since her disappearance. Harrington vanished last month while attending a concert at the University of Virginia.”
Cassandra’s name does not even show up under the related names column for the articles:
Who was even looking for Cassandra? One article states that the only reason why the discovery garnered statewide interest was because the body was believed to be Morgan Harrington.
“The discovery had garnered interest statewide because of the missing person case of Morgan Harrington, who disappeared from a concert in Charlottesville in October.”
Cassandra was a loving mother, daughter and sister. She had a family who cared about her. She was not only a victim of foul play but also a victim of the disinterested media. Cassandra was last seen on October 10, 2009, but no article was written on her until she was missing for more than a month. To Cassandra and her family: I’m sorry more attention was not being paid to you.
Anyone with information regarding to Cassandra’s disappearance or death, including her whereabouts around the time she disappeared or the identity of any suspects, is urged to contact the Lynchburg Police Department at 455-6054, the Campbell County Sheriff’s Office at 332-9580 or Central Virginia Crime Stoppers at (888) 798-5900.
Read latest article here: Clues sought in Cassandra Morton’s death
Forty-four days after Cassandra Morton’s body was discovered in a wooded area near Liberty University, investigators still are searching for leads to her killer, hoping the trail won’t grow cold.
Capt. L.T. Guthrie, of the Campbell County Sheriff’s Office, said investigators are trying to piece together the fragments they know about Morton’s life in Lynchburg, in order to reconstruct the last hours and days of her life.
“We’re focusing on the last few days of her life … trying to re-create that the best we can, and hopefully that will lead us in the path we need to go,” Guthrie said.
Morton’s body was found in a wooded area off a hiking trail on Candlers Mountain on Nov. 29.
Investigators have been referring to the case as a homicide, though they have not released the manner of death.
Morton had initially been reported missing in mid-October. Guthrie said the conditions of the body indicated that the remains had been at the site for about that long.
He added the Lynchburg Police Department is assisting in the investigation, as Morton was a resident of Lynchburg, and most of her activities would have been in the city.
Guthrie said beyond that knowledge, Morton’s routines and contacts have been difficult to pin down.
“She stayed from one home to another,” he said. “She really didn’t have a set pattern or routine in her life, so that makes it more difficult.”
He said despite the time that has passed since the discovery, investigators hope resolution is only a tip away.
“We’re always cautiously optimistic. We’ve certainly exhausted all our resources to find out who did this to her, and we’re hopeful that our work won’t be in vain,” Guthrie said.
He urged anyone who may have seen Morton up until or around Oct. 10, when she was reported missing, to call the sheriff’s office.
“Whether they think their information is significant or not, we’d like an opportunity to evaluate it,” Guthrie said.
Anyone with information should call the Campbell County Sheriff’s Office at 332-9580.