Judge signs gag orders in Heather Elvis case

Published: Mar. 21, 2014 at 8:28 PM EDT|Updated: Mar. 24, 2014 at 4:03 PM EDT
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Judge Steven John presides over the Moorer bond hearing Monday.
Judge Steven John presides over the Moorer bond hearing Monday.

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – Gag orders have been signed off on for the Heather Elvis case, restricting what information can be given by those involved in the case about the couple charged with the kidnapping and murder of 20-year-old Heather Elvis.

Gabriel Richardson, Assistant to Senior Solicitor Donna Elder in the Horry County Solicitors Office, confirmed the gag orders were signed by Judge Steven John on Friday. Separate gag orders were filed for Tammy Moorer and Sidney Moorer.

The gag orders comes after Sidney Moorer, 39, and Tammy Moorer, 42, were indicted on murder and kidnapping charges in relation to the Heather Elvis case Thursday. The Moorers were taken into custody after police searched their home Feb. 21, and were denied bond at a hearing on Monday.

Each gag order states:

"The Court finds that it is likely that there will continue to be inquiries made by non trial participants and that any Statements and information responsive to such inquiries are likely to be widely disseminated and could jeopardize the fair administration of justice in these Cases. As such, without some restraint on the trial participants and those involved with the investigation of these cases there is a substantial likelihood that the Defendant may be denied a fair trial."

View the complete text of Sidney Moorer's gag order here (PDF): http://ftpcontent4.worldnow.com/wmbf/pdf/SidneyMoorerGagOrder.pdf 

View the complete text of Tammy Moorer's gag order here (PDF): http://ftpcontent4.worldnow.com/wmbf/pdf/TammyMoorerGagOrder.pdf 

These gag orders apply to the Solicitor, all law enforcement agencies currently or formally involved in these cases, the defendants, and the counsel for the defendants. The order also applies to any employees of any of these entities.

Any of these entities may still put out a written release about these cases, but the release must be approved by the court first.

Earlier this month, Solicitor Jimmy Richardson said the Horry County Solicitor's Office had filed a motion for a gag order. Judge Steven John presided over the bond hearing on last week, but chose not to address the gag order motion at that time.

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