MANATEE -- Prosecutors will not file criminal charges in the 2009 death of Sheena Morris in a Bradenton Beach hotel room, the state attorney's office said Wednesday.
A Florida Department of Law Enforcement investigation determined there was no evidence of a homicide, officials said.
Morris, 22, was found dead hanging from a shower in the Bridge Walk Resort in Bradenton Beach on New Year's Day 2009.
Her death has been ruled a suicide.
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"Having reviewed the evidence cited above, the undersigned is satisfied that
there are no remaining investigative avenues to be explored that would yield reliable and relevant information in this case," Assistant State Attorney Arthur Brown, homicide division chief, wrote in a memorandum on Wednesday.
An second investigation was conducted by FDLE after Morris's mother Kelly Osborn insisted that Morris's fiance Joe Genoese was responsible for her daughter's death. FDLE began to turn over their reports and data to the State Attorney's Office for review on Aug. 13.
Brown met with Osborn, her husband and Morris' father on Wednesday to inform them of his conclusions.
Osborn hugged Brown and others present at the meeting and thanked them for conducting a thorough investigation.
"She indicated that we had finally given her answers," Brown said. "She was very cooperative and cordial and did not question our findings or conclusions.
Osborn told Brown, "All I have been looking for the last few years is answers," Brown said.
The Herald reached out to Osborn who said she was tired and had a headache, while being bombarded by the media. The family has chosen to hold a press conference at the mother's home Thursday morning, at which time they will share their thoughts on the final outcome of the investigation.
Morris, recently engaged, had come to the Bradenton Beach resort on Dec. 30, 2008, to celebrate the New Year with Genoese. Shortly after midnight the couple had a fight and Genoese left the hotel.
After a night that included a visit to Morris by police when neighbors called to report a domestic disturbance, police were called again on New Year's Day by hotel management to evict the guests. Morris was discovered dead in the room.
An investigation by the Bradenton Beach determined that the cause of death was a suicide.
The case was reopened in October 2012 and FDLE began an investigation into the death.
Brown's memorandum and the FDLE report reveal the evidence and analysis that led investigators to confirm the cause of death as suicide.
Despite Osborn's disbelief in recent years that her daughter committed suicide, evidence reviewed by Brown concluded that Osborn had told Sgt. Leonard Diaz of the Bradenton Beach Police Department and a Medical Examiner's Office investigator that her daughter had attempted to commit suicide when she was 16 years old.
Osborn also told them that Morris had several friends who committed suicide, including one whose funeral she just attended the week prior. That friend had done so by hanging himself with a blue dog leash. Morris was also found hanging from a blue dog leash..
Investigators looked at Morris' fragile state of mind during the days immediately before her death.
"There seems to be an abundance of evidence that she was unhappy during the holidays," Brown wrote.
Those factors included that she was not on speaking terms with her mother in the days between Christmas and her death, she was dealing with the loss of two friends, and her relationship was in jeopardy.
A psychologist who reviewed police and FDLE's reports concluded that Morris had "presented with multiple risk factors consistent with individuals who commit suicide."
The cause of death was determined to be hanging based on the findings of Utley and Dr. Baden, both of whom conducted autopsies on Morris. The second autopsy was conducted in July 2010 at the request of Morris' family.
"There was no evidence of damage to the hyoid bone or hemorrhaging of the strap muscles of the neck that might indicate that Sheena was strangled," Brown wrote in his report.
A claim that there appeared to be a lack of sand in the shower was also addressed in the second investigation.
"When the area near Sheena's feet is enlarged on proper photographic paper, sand and hairs are visible on the shower and on the shower door track," Brown wrote.
The investigation also concluded that various factors could have influenced the amount of sand found on the floor including the presence of her flip flops that she could have been wearing and first responders could have tracked some of the sand out.
A finger print on the shower head was also analyzed and did not match Genoese. Investigators did not have Morris' print to compare it to.
Questions about Genoese were also ruled out during FDLE's investigation, confirming that he was seen by three individuals after returning to the home he owned and that his cell phone traces his return there.
Genoese had told investigators that he crossed the Skyway bridge on his way home yet no record could be found of his E-Transponder going off at the toll. A Florida Department of Transportation investigator told FDLE investigators that various issues with the transponders could cause them not to be logged or charged.
Brown reviewed additional evidence provided by FDLE and concurred with FDLE findings.
Jessica De Leon, law enforcement reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7049. You can follow her on Twitter @JDeLeon1012.