I feel like this all happened just the other day…but, it was 11 years ago. Escaping the details of every moment of those last few days of Morgan’s life is impossible. We were all so naive, we thought this nightmare would soon end. We were so very wrong, and it makes me sick to my stomach to remember how wrong we really were.
And yes, I still play the blame game, always wondering if I had just taken her away, would she still be alive today…it hurts every single time I think about it.
November 30, 2011
Morgan is alone tonight – her friend does not sleep over. Steve & I are there, but we are in our room on the other end of the house. Morgan’s phone is busy, just past midnight this morning she receives a text. Not the first time in her life, she is a twenty-year-old young woman, but this is out of character, considering the past few months. At 2 seconds past 12:00 am, a person she does not know texts her, it turns out to be quite innocent. Her friend Nathan, who is just back from Australia, does not have a phone yet, and had asked Morgan if he could give another friend her number until he gets his own phone, he said his friend might be texting, it was just that neither Nathan nor Morgan thought it would be at midnight!
Morgan calls him back and tries to put him in touch with Nathan, but gives up and goes back to sleep. Another friend of Morgan’s texts at 12:14 AM, and teases her about not lending him her sweater earlier. Morgan answers him and he keeps going on with his texting, but she stops conversing and goes back to sleep. Unfortunately, the stalker must have been outside, and because it seemed he had seen her light on and he now wants her attention. Morgan thinks this because there is very loud banging at random intervals. Once it starts up, Morgan covers her head with a pillow, and hopes he stops.
The “suspect” Keenan did not check into work until 3:05 am, according to his work records, that we received AFTER Morgan’s murder, so he had plenty of time to harass Morgan.
We will find out the following year, at 12:25 AM suspicious status updates are happening on some of the suspect’s Facebook accounts. Hannah Hurlocker (Brooke’s friend) happens to be staying with her, just up the street, and her wall updates with, “ugh I already called you and told you member?” a minute later someone named Stephen says, “Oh yeah my bad sorry” Hannah answers, “its osay” Stephen expands on his answer “Oh yeah my bad sorry But u didn’t tell me what was going on u just asked me to Drop everything and come get you that’s it” at 12:27 AM Hannah tells him, “enough said”
Was something being planned to harm Morgan on this night?
Also at 12:27 Morgan’s phone rings, she answers and hangs up from under her pillow. It was yet another friend “drunk dialing” her. He will call to apologize later in the day.
Morgan gives up on sleep, and she gives up on her stalker outside, giving up for the night – she knows he won’t stop, so, in a very strange move for Morgan, she gathers up clothes and comes into our bathroom with her puppy to dress. I hear her, and come in to see what is wrong. Morgan can’t explain it, but feels like something is really wrong. Her crazy stalker has been banging some wretched beat on her window and she is afraid he will be at it all night, so she slipped out of the room and came into our bathroom to change. And now she wants to go to her friend’s grandmother’s house for the rest of the night. She has had a standing invitation, and has only used it a few times, but Morgan knows she is home and her couch is not only warm and safe, but most importantly quiet. A place to dream happy dreams.
For some reason I think she is making the right choice and I tell her I think it is a good idea. I walk out onto the porch and watch her and her puppy drive off at 12:47 AM. I wake up Steve and tell him what has happened – he wants to get up and make sure she makes it OK. I tell him I have been watching cars in driveways for the last five minutes, and nothing has moved, and she promised to text me as soon as she is safely locked up in her friend’s grandmother’s house.
It’s 12:52 AM when I call dispatch. I tell them what has happened. She has done this a few times when the stalker is being extra persistent, so this might be a good night to nab him, but before I can explain all that, dispatch tells me the officers just left the neighborhood one hour before because they were investigating our next door neighbor Ken’s house, where a robbery occurred earlier in the evening, but they will come back. Might not even be an hour.
You would think with a sheriff’s presence constantly coming and going from our house that nobody in the right mind would be breaking in to our neighbor’s house – but, I don’t think we have been dealing with people that are in their right mind.
The next morning Steve is watching the cameras and can see a deputy walk up to Morgan’s window, get down on his knees and inspect something on the ground. He wonders what he found and wants me to make a note to ask Detective Glassmire next time I talk with him. Steve also see’s him on the other side of the house and comments to me that he never even went in the backyard!
At 8:00 AM another of Morgan’s friends had a text message conversation with her about a Bluegrass festival, he can’t believe she won’t go to a performance with him and get tattoos, which he believes you have to have before you can express certain opinions. It is all good natured, and fun loving.
Steve meets his crew in the driveway at 8:55 AM and lines out the day for them. He invites them in the house for coffee, and tells them about the night before. They are incensed, and just want to go take care of this. Steve tells them that we heard from the detective that it will be over soon. None too soon for our liking.
Morgan comes home at 10:07 AM and looks well rested. Steve leaves at 10:10 AM in his truck to run an errand. 10:27 AM her “drunk dial” friend from this morning texts to tell Morgan he is sorry. Morgan does not answer him, and works on her room before we all leave to go to our doctor’s appointments this afternoon in Grand Junction.
There was a mini van that pulled up the driveway at 10:55 AM and a man came to the front door with a sheet of paper looking for someone in the neighborhood that I had never heard of before. He seemed to expect that and left, not circling the neighborhood or asking anyone else, he just left…strange.
Right after he left, Morgan got a text she found uproariously funny. She is getting very frustrated trying to get her point across to her long ago ex-boyfriend, that she does not want to date him again, she just wants to be friends. She changed her Facebook profile as a joke to say she was in a relationship with a girlfriend of hers at school. Her girlfriend had just been approached by an instructor who thought it was about time. It was so funny to Morgan that she said she was going to leave it for a few more days before changing it back.
Steve loaded the truck with the dogs and our stuff, then at 12:19 PM we were on the road. Morgan was now in one of her all time favorite places, crashed out in the back seat of the truck, while on a road trip. A short one, but a road trip all the same. Below you can see a Facebook post she responded to today.
As Morgan, Steve, and I are driving to Grand Junction for our annual doctor’s appointments, Morgan received a text from Lorraine at 1:48 PM wondering if she could babysit this afternoon. Steve dropped Morgan and I off at our doctor’s office at 2:15 PM, and went on to his appointment. Once we were in the waiting area, Morgan answered Lorraine, and said she was sorry, but she was in Grand Junction for the afternoon.
I sat talking with Morgan until 2:50 PM when I then went in for my appointment. We were there for our annual check ups and since it was such a long drive (almost 2 hours) we always combined our appointments and drove together. Morgan had been texting her friends, and when I came out after my appt. Morgan had already gone in to see the doctor, so I waited for her to come out. I had talked to her doctor (who was also my doctor) about the stalking before she saw Morgan, and wanted to be sure she knew about what was going on.
Morgan came out just before 4:00 PM, and I asked about her appointment. Morgan told me she had a conversation with her doctor about the stalking, and told her how she felt. Her doctor had wondered if she felt like she needed sleep aids or anti-stress pills, because it sounded like a bad situation. Morgan told me she had told her doctor that she would rather not take pills, and she was getting through it.
We both sat by the front door and waited for Steve to come back after his appointment. Morgan texted her friend Calder, then at exactly 4:00 PM Nathan called Morgan, using Calder’s phone, with some news that upset Morgan. Earlier that day a friend of Calder’s had met Keenan, and heard he was going to Grand Junction and wanted to go with him. He had told her that he was going with his girlfriend Morgan, and she didn’t want anyone else to go along. Morgan was visibly shaken, wondering if her stalker had followed us to Grand Junction. We all wondered what was going on, and I called Detective Glassmire to fill him in on this story.
Detective Glassmire wanted Calder’s friend’s number so he could check out the story. Morgan set about trying to get the number. Steve picked us up and had a few errands to run before we went to the mall. Morgan was texting with friends and suddenly asked Steve if it would be OK if she had a knife to keep under her pillow – just in case. Steve wondered if anything had happened, and we told him about the call from Nathan telling Morgan about Keenan having a girlfriend named Morgan. Then Morgan heard that Morgan was his girlfriend for the last four years, only he was living with Brooke all summer, so this didn’t make sense, and many were insisting Keenan and Brooke were still together, even though they announced their breakup on Facebook in October. Something was not adding up, and Morgan did not like it at all.
At Steve’s first stop, Morgan and I waited in the truck, while Steve went inside. As part of his purchases, he bought a folding knife and drew a happy face on the box, then handed it to Morgan when he came back to the truck. I watched her open the box and smile. She told her Daddy how he was the best, he told her to be careful with it, and we stopped to have dinner together. Here is a picture Morgan took tonight of the box the knife was in – this is the happy face Steve drew on the box…we found the box, with the knife still in it, in her bed the morning we found her body…she never had a chance to take it out of the box in time to protect herself…
At 5:01 PM Morgan texted Calder that Detective Glassmire wanted to talk with his friend, and could he get her the number.
Back at the house at 6:12 PM a car came up our street and turned into Elliott’s driveway.
After dinner we decided to skip the mall, and Christmas shopping, because everyone was so tired, so we headed home instead.
Morgan wrote an answer to her friend on Facebook, “I love life.”
I sent Detective Glassmire a text to tell him we have not gotten the phone number yet, but there is another person you can talk to that knows all of the parties involved. He does not call.
We arrived home from Grand Junction at 7:49 PM, unloaded all of our stuff from the day, and at 8:06 PM Steve walks Morgan and Wylah out to the car, and they leave. Morgan visits, texts, and calls her friends.
We did not know the following until a year later in 2012 – At 6:40 PM on Facebook, Hannah Hurlocker (Brooke’s friend who is staying at her house now) posts on her wall. Brooke “I CAN”T STOP THINKING…I JUST CAN”T DO IT”
Then at 11:39 PM Brooke answers Hannah on Facebook – “me either girl”
What was going on? What were they planning to do that was upsetting?
And at 11:49 PM Nathan and Morgan drive up. She has a beautiful new French manicure to show me. Nathan walks around to her window and checks that side of the house, then grabs his backpack from inside the car and goes inside. We had a large U shape couch in front of the TV. Nathan was going to go to sleep on the couch in the office, but instead they watch a movie out on the couch.
The “suspects” hours on the 30th show he was free this evening to stalk…his job was less than a 5 minute drive from our house and he was not working this evening…many years later, he still tells people he was always working, and on camera when any incidents of stalking occurred…just one of his many, many lies.