A video from Sidney Moorer’s own surveillance system shows Sidney, his wife Tammy and others vigorously cleaning the family pickup just days after Heather Elvis went missing.
This was evidence presented Friday afternoon in Sidney Moorer’s kidnapping trial related to the disappearance of Heather Elvis in December 2013. Tammy Moorer is currently serving a 30-year sentence for the kidnapping of Elvis.
Horry County Police Lt. Peter Cestare said he and other investigators were dispatched to the Moorer residence on Dec. 20, 2013, to find any sign of Elvis whose car had been found abandoned at Peachtree Landing in the early morning hours of Dec. 18. At the time, Cestare said, they were still working the case as a missing person, not a criminal investigation.
Cestare said Tammy let him into the house to take pictures and since they did not have a search warrant, they couldn’t do an extensive search. He said she accompanied him throughout the house so that he could take photographs. He was only allowed to take the photos from the main rooms and in doorways.
While searching the property, Cestare said he noticed three cameras on the outside of the house and one at the top of a stairway inside. He said he didn’t take direct photos of the camera in order not to tip off Tammy that he had noticed them.
Outside, he said he spotted an open mortar container, cleaning supplies, a tarp and a shotgun shell, which he thought seemed unusual. Cestare said Tammy let him look into a camper parked near the house but not into a black F150 pickup truck parked in the driveway.
Cestare said police obtained a search warrant and brought the truck to police headquarters a little over a week later. He said he did not test for DNA because he had obtained a surveillance video from the Moorer residence showing the family extensively washing the truck and trying to obtain touch DNA or other samples would have been futile.
He showed the jury the video police had obtained from Moorer’s surveillance system. Cestare said in watching the video, he realized it was a new system when he noticed the original camera at the top of the stairway was missing in the video.
The prosecution focused on the part of the video that showed the family extensively washing the vehicle. Cestare pointed out that Tammy spent a great deal of time cleaning the passenger side of the interior of the truck. While the truck was being cleaned, Sidney had started a burn pile, destroying the towels being used to wash the truck, Cestare added.
The time stamp on the video said it was made around 4 p.m. on Dec. 23, 2013, a week before the truck was taken to police headquarters. Another prosecution witness, Jimmy Shroering, testified his company had examined the DVR removed from the surveillance system and found the time and date on the DVR had been changed twice. He said the video was actually made on Dec. 22, four days after Elvis’s car was found at Peachtree Landing.
The trial will continue Monday morning at 9:30.