SLED witness: Video surveillance, receipt shows Sidney Moorer bought pregnancy test
CONWAY, SC (WMBF) - Video surveillance footage made up the bulk of the rest of the evidence presented Tuesday in the kidnapping trial of Sidney Moorer.
Amelia Bethea, who works with South Carolina's State Law Enforcement Division, testified that she obtained footage from a local Wal-Mart dated Dec. 18, 2013.
In her testimony, Bethea said the footage showed Moorer entering the Wal-Mart around 1:12 a.m., and making a purchase. A receipt entered into evidence and time stamped 1:19 a.m., indicated the defendant bought a pregnancy test and a cigar.
The jury was shown that surveillance footage.
During Monday, former coworkers of Heather Elvis, who went missing Dec. 18, 2013, testified that she and Moorer started a relationship while they were employed at the former Tilted Kilt location at Broadway at the Beach in Myrtle Beach.
Jessica Cooke, who said she was Elvis' supervisor, testified Monday she noticed the girl was gaining weight, which led to Elvis eventually taking a pregnancy test. That test, the witness added, came up as an error.
While a portion of Tuesday afternoon focused on surveillance footage, earlier testimony focused on cellphone records.
Jonathan Martin, who was an investigator with the Horry County Police Department's violent crimes division in December 2013, testified that he obtained Elvis' cellphone records from T. Mobile from 1:35 to 3:41 a.m., on Dec. 18.
Martin testified for solicitor Nancy Livesay that records indicated Elvis received a call from a pay phone that lasted almost five minutes. Nine outgoing calls were placed by Elvis to that pay phone, according to the witness.
Then, Elvis placed a call to Moorer's cellphone around 3:17 a.m., Martin testified. That call reportedly lasted for more than four minutes.
According to the investigator, additional calls were placed by Elvis to Moorer's cellphone. The last one was registered at 3:41 a.m., on Dec. 18, 2013.
"This phone has never produced any more records," Martin said.
He added that, during the course of the investigation, it was determined Moorer had placed the call from the pay phone.
On cross examination by defense attorney Kirk Truslow, Martin testified that Moorer said he had called Elvis from the pay phone to get her to stop harassing him and leaving notes on his vehicle.
That testimony followed the Tuesday morning session, where a man testified that, to the best of his knowledge, he was the last person to lay eyes on Elvis before her disappearance.
Stephen Schiraldi was called by the state to testify. He told the jury he and Elvis went on a date on Dec. 17, 2013, that included dinner at Banditos restaurant in Myrtle Beach, some time spent teaching her to drive a stick shift vehicle in an empty mall parking lot and watching a movie at his mother's house, where he was staying.
The witness testified he dropped Elvis off at her apartment around 1:15 or 1:30 a.m., on Dec. 18, and was inside her residence for about five minutes before leaving to go home.
Schiraldi said he and Elvis made plans to get together again. He added he tried calling her later that day and sending her Facebook messages, but never heard back.
On cross examination by the defense, the witness was asked if he left his mother's house at any point after dropping Elvis off. Schiraldi testified he didn't leave again until around 9 a.m. to go to work.
In response to a question from Truslow, Schiraldi testified that, to the best of his knowledge, he was the last person to see Elvis before she went missing.
Other witnesses who testified during the opening session on Tuesday included an Horry County police officer who was patrolling Peachtree Boat Landing in the early-morning hours of Dec. 18 and found Elvis' vehicle.
HCPD Officer Casy Guskiewicz testified that when he saw the vehicle, all its doors were locked and the windows closed and intact.
Later, Danny Furr, a sergeant with the HCPD, testified that he went to the Tilted Kilt, where both Elvis and Moorer worked, after the initial report came in that she was missing.
Furr added he got a phone number for Moorer from the Tilted Kilt's general manager after the individual indicated that there was a relationship between the defendant and Elvis.
A recess was called and testimony was set to resume Tuesday afternoon.
Courtroom 3B at the Horry County Government and Justice Center had a number of audience members already in their seats before testimony resumed in the Sidney Moorer trial on Tuesday morning.
On Monday, a jury of 12 plus two alternates was selected to hear testimony in the case against Moorer, who is charged with kidnapping in relation to the 2013 disappearance of Heather Elvis.
Three witnesses testified Monday afternoon. All used to work with Elvis at the former Tilted Kilt location at Broadway at the Beach. Each testified that Moorer and Elvis had a relationship that ultimately ended in October 2013.
Sidney Moorer and his wife, Tammy Moorer, were both originally charged with murdering Heather Elvis. But those charges were dropped in March.
Tammy Moorer is also charged with kidnapping. A trial date for Tammy Moorer has not yet been set.
The Moorers were arrested in February 2014 in connection with the disappearance of Elvis, who was 20 years old when she went missing in December 2013.
Elvis' parents are sitting in on the trial.
"It's not easy. It has not been easy since day one for my wife or myself," said Terry Elvis. "There's time when you have tears in your eyes. There's times when you don't."
He said he's hoping to see the justice his family has been waiting on for so long by the time this week, and the trial, ends.
"It's painting a picture," Elvis said, of the testimony so far. "With every five minutes that goes by it gets clearer and clearer. If I were to say how confident I am at this time, I think you'll see a conviction."
When asked if he knew of the possibility of a pregnancy, Elvis said he's been hearing the testimony from witnesses about it like everyone else and he won't believe something until he sees it
Stay with WMBF News both on air and online for complete coverage of the trial.
First witnesses testify they believed Heather Elvis was pregnant
Timeline of events in the Heather Elvis case
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