Panel to release recommendations in Sheena Morris case

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Posted: Wednesday, October 10, 2012 9:45 pm | Updated: 5:13 pm, Fri Oct 18, 2013.

MANATEE COUNTY -- Will the Sheena Morris case be reopened? A panel of law enforcement experts have made their recommendations, which will likely answer that question.

Morris was found hanging in a Bradenton Beach hotel room in 2009. Officers ruled the death a suicide, but her mother thinks it was murder.

The FDLE will not release the recommendations until Bradenton Beach Police Chief Sam Speciale hears them. That could come as soon as Friday.

The recommendations will likely say one of two things: either investigators should take another look at the case, or it should remain closed.

Last month, a panel of experts reviewed the Morris case, after Sheena's mother, Kelly Osborn, demanded that it be reopened.

If the findings come back saying the Bradenton Beach Police Department should take another look at the case, FDLE tells us Chief Speciale has three options: one, he can ignore the panel's findings; two, he can reopen the case using his own department; or three, have the FDLE investigate the case.

The last one is the option Osborn is hoping for. “I would like to be able to say, optimistically, that it’s time to take a step back and let someone else hands this.”

Speciale told ABC 7 over the phone that he plans to meet with the media once those recommendations are presented to him. In an interview conducted with the chief in August, he told us that if the panel believes there is a possibility this was anything other than a suicide, he will gladly open the case.

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