Photo: Morgan Harrington.
Virginia State Police Superintendent Steve Flaherty said authorities are confident they've finally found the body of the 20-year-old who disappeared last October while attending a Metallica concert in Charlottesville, but an autopsy was being conducted to confirm the identification.
Photo: Morgan Harrington.
"We can't say with 100 percent certainty, however, there were significant items and evidence" to lead authorities to conclude the remains were Harrington's, Flaherty said Tuesday. Investigators declined to say what the items were.
The remains were found Tuesday morning by farmer David Bass while he was on a tractor inspecting fences on his 700 acres in the rugged foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Flaherty described the location as "very remote." The farm is located in southern Albemarle County, about 10 miles from the John Paul Jones Arena.
Photo: Morgan Harrington and family.
"We are in the very infant stages of this investigation. We have more questions then we do have answers," Flaherty said.
Police have said Harrington, a junior majoring in education, had gone to Charlottesville to attend the concert. She became separated from friends after she left the arena and was denied re-entry.
Harrington was last seen wearing a black T-shirt with "Pantera" across the front in tan letters, a black mini skirt, black tights and black knee-high boots. Her purse and cell phone were found by a passer-by in a small parking lot between the arena and an athletic field.
Hundreds of volunteers as well as law enforcement officials searched the surrounding area. The case drew national attention, police received hundreds of tips, and at least $150,000 in reward money was offered. Metallica contributed $50,000.
Morgan's image was seen on billboards and posters around Virginia, and her family created a Web site to further the search.
Flaherty said the farm wasn't searched before because authorities had no evidence leading them to the farm.
Harrington's parents were in Charlottesville to help identify the remains, but did not attend the news conference.
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