CONWAY, SC (WBTW) – Following three days of testimony, the jury in Sidney Moorer’s obstruction of justice trial delivered a verdict in about 50 minutes.
The jury, made of 11 men and one woman, found Moorer guilty of obstruction of justice. Just after the verdict Wednesday evening, the judge sentenced Moorer to the maximum 10 years in prison, with credit for one year he already served.
The man accused of kidnapping Heather Elvis has maintained his innocence for nearly four years, saying he had nothing to do with the then 20-year-old’s disappearance or presumed death. Wednesday afternoon, however, 12 jurors decided there was enough evidence to show Moorer intentionally lied to police about his communication with Elvis.
Horry County prosecutors say Moorer lied to deter police from investigating him further in the first 48 hours of Elvis’ disappearance.
Senior Assistant Solicitor Nancy Livesay presented a forty minute argument claiming that Moorer lied to police, deleted phone calls, and deleted text messages with the intent to disrupt the investigation into Elvis’ disappearance. The solicitor began with an explanation of how the jurors should determine if Moorer is guilty of obstruction of justice.
“Obstruction of justice is just what you would think it would be,” states Livesay. “It is doing anything to obstruct justice being served.”
Livesay also claimed there was no evidence that Moorer only called Elvis to tell her to stop contacting him, as Moorer claimed.
“The whole time his intent was to mislead them (police),” announced Livesay. “He (Moorer) knew this was serious. He knew it was. And everything that came out of his mouth almost was some twisted version of the truth.”
The jurors agreed with the state’s argument despite Moorer’s defense attorney claiming police and the prosecution botched the investigation from the beginning.
As Kirk Truslow approached the jury for closing arguments, he began by explaining how “offended” he was by what the state had presented. He immediately recognized the jury as the group that will have the last say in Moorer’s fate.
“The power is with you, so please, for the love of everything, please, it’s the only thing that works from keeping someone who’s innocent form being found guilty,” Truslow says of and to the jury.
Truslow said the prosecution was just looking for someone to blame after not conducting a thorough investigation.
“They’ve fumbled this thing for four years in ways you and I can’t imagine,” claims Truslow. “It’s causing trouble. It’s causing pain. So they have resorted, at this point, to put anybody in jail for anything associated with this. Somebody’s going to pay. They don’t care who.”
Moorer, along with his wife, Tammy Moorer, still faces kidnapping charges in Elvis’ disappearance. He was tried in 2016 on the kidnapping charge, but a mistrial was declared when the jurors could not deliver a unanimous decision. A date for that kidnapping retrial has not been set.