Two charged, held on bond, in exposure and obstruction charges regarding Heather Elvis case

jrodriguez@thesunnews.comFebruary 22, 2014 

— A man and woman were formally charged Saturday morning with two counts each of indecent exposure and one count of obstruction of justice in a case Horry County Police has said are linked to the Heather Elvis disappearance case.

What’s not clear is how the charges are linked to the case, and the only thing linking them is a press release about a search warrant issued by the police department Friday.

Tammy Lorinda Moorer, 41, and Sidney St. Clair Moorer, 38, both of Myrtle Beach, were charged Saturday with the counts. The couple is married and they were served a search warrant for their S.C. 814 home on Friday morning. Federal, state and local police spent the majority of the day Friday searching their home and seizing two trucks from their residence. Lt. Robert Kegler said Saturday police wrapped up the search late Friday night.

The Moorers appeared in court separately Saturday, with Tammy Moorer appearing earlier in the day and Sidney Moorer going before Judge Dennis E. Phipps in the afternoon. Bond was set at $20,000 for each of them.

Myrtle Beach Attorney Greg McCollum was outside the J. Reuben Long Detention Center Saturday afternoon, and said he was requested by the public defender’s office to meet with Tammy Moorer, but not necessarily as a public defender.

“I’m here to talk to Tammy,” McCollum said.

Kirk Truslow, also a Myrtle Beach attorney, was meeting with Sidney Moorer Saturday afternoon, according to McCollum.

When asked how the two counts of indecent exposure and one county of obstruction of justice fit with the Heather Elvis case, McCollum said he wasn’t sure.

“I don’t know that it does. I’m just now starting to look at it,” he said.

Elvis was last seen the night of Dec. 17 and last heard from Dec. 18. Volunteers from throughout the region have helped search for her through wooded areas and near Peachtree Landing, where her car was found. She was the subject of a segment on HLN’s nationally televised program hosted by Nancy Grace. Large posters, billboards and paper-sized flyers can been seen for miles around Myrtle Beach featuring the 20-year-old’s smile, a contact number to help identify her whereabouts and a reward that has reached $30,000.

Asked whether he has heard Tammy Moorer will be facing more charges, McCollum said, “I haven’t heard any specifics about that, but clearly that’s on everyone’s mind.”

The Moorers were being held on $20,000 bond each Saturday afternoon. A May 2 initial appearance was set for the both of them. If convicted, the obstruction of justice charge carries a maximum of 10 years in prison, and the indecent exposure conviction could mean up to three years in prison for each count.

So far, the only thing linking the charges to Heather Elvis is a press release issued by the Horry County Police Department Friday, which stated the search and seizure of the Moorer’s property “was executed in an attempt to identify potential evidence based on new information obtained through expert analysis of previously seized surveillance tapes in the area along with financial discrepancies filed with the state of South Carolina on behalf of the occupants of the residence.”

Police have said the surveillance footage has come from throughout the Socastee area, and deferred any questions about the “financial discrepancies” to the U.S. Attorney’s General Office.

The Sun News requested the search warrant results, arrest warrants and explanation of charges from the magistrate’s office, but none were available until Monday.

McCollum said the next step is basic for he and Tammy Moorer.

“The steps moving forward, as with any client, is to listen to them, see what they have to say, understand their situation and then go from there,” he said.

Contact JASON M. RODRIGUEZ at 626-0301 or follow him at Twitter.com/TSN_jrodriguez.

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