CHARLESTON, SC (WMBF) – An FBI agent's court testimony alleges that Brittanee Drexel, a teen missing from Myrtle Beach since 2009, was abducted, gang-raped at a "stash house" in the McClellanville area, shot after trying to escape, and then her body was fed to alligators.
According to court documents independently obtained by WMBF News, on Monday, Aug. 15, FBI agent Gerrick Munoz testified in a detention hearing for Timothy De'Shaun Taylor in an unrelated case involving a 2011 robbery in Mt. Pleasant. In that hearing, Munoz revealed that Taylor is one of the main suspects in Drexel's kidnapping investigation.
"We've had several people…have come up and give us testimony, outlining Mr. Taylor's involvement in this particular case," Munoz said during the hearing, according to court transcripts.
An eyewitness, identified in the transcripts as Taquan Brown, an inmate from Walterboro, gave Munoz a detailed account of what happened to Drexel, claiming that he was present at the stash house when Drexel was killed. Brown is serving time on an unrelated charge.
Drexel, who was 17 when she traveled from her home in Rochester, New York, disappeared in 2009 during a spring break trip to Myrtle Beach. In June of this year, the FBI held a news conference announcing that they believed she had been murdered, and they were actively pursuing leads in the McClellanville area, where they believed she was held for several days after her abduction from Myrtle Beach.
In July, an attorney for the Drexel family revealed that the FBI had identified a suspect or suspects in the case, and that she was possibly the victim of human trafficking.
Brown reportedly told Agent Munoz that he went to the stash house in the days after Drexel was abducted, and saw Timothy Da'Shaun Taylor, who was 16 at the time, sexually abusing Drexel. Brown said that Taylor was not the only person who sexually abused Drexel.
Brown said he saw others in the room with Taylor and Drexel, including Taylor's father, Shaun Taylor. When Brown was outside the house, he saw Drexel run from it. He said he saw her get pistol-whipped and taken back inside the house.
That's when Brown said he heard two shots fired. He told Munoz he assumed Shaun Taylor shot Drexel, and then her body was wrapped and taken away, Brown said.
In the court document, Munoz testified that several witnesses said Drexel's body was put into a gator pit so it would be eaten. He added that investigators found nothing after searching several alligator ponds, but there as many as 40 such ponds in the area.
According to Munoz, another inmate in a Georgetown penitentiary corroborated Brown's account of what happened to Drexel. That inmate told Munoz that Timothy De'Shaun Taylor had picked up Drexel from Myrtle Beach, and then took her to McClellanville where she ended up in a human trafficking situation. That inmate said that "it became a problem" when the press began to run stories about Drexel's disappearance, and that she was then "murdered and disposed of."
Munoz said during Taylor's detention hearing that several other witnesses are about to come forward, and he believes they have direct, first-hand testimony as to what they saw, which will confirm Taylor's direct involvement in Drexel's murder. However, no one has been charged at this point.
Taylor's attorney, David Aylor, cross-examined Munoz during the detention hearing for Taylor's robbery charge. Munoz and the FBI were seeking to bring federal charges against Taylor for the 2011 robbery, after he had already served time for the state charges.
When asked whether this practice was unique, Munoz responded: "I wouldn't call it unique. I would say it's different, but, I wouldn't say it's unique to go back and charge someone federally for something they've already been charged in the state."
Taylor's mother, Joanne Taylor, addressed the court: "I feel he's already, you know, served his time for what he done. He's a great kid, and I want to say that at the time of this alleged abduction, he was 16 years old. I was never a mother that would let my kids run loosely, and definitely now with the father, you know out to do things."
Aylor said that using Brown as an eyewitness in the Drexel case was "clearly nothing but a squeeze job," adding, "If there was enough info, then there would already be charges against Taylor. We wouldn't even be hearing this."
Aylor also said that due to an accident when he was 4 years old, Taylor has only one arm.
"At 18 years old, he made a terrible mistake, and he made a terrible mistake, and he served his time for that mistake," Aylor said, when speaking about the 2011 robbery. "If they want to charge him for Brittanee Drexel's kidnapping, murder, rape, that's fine. He'll come to court. But he shouldn't have to be punished for something he's already done simply because some jailhouse rat has come up with a story because he has nothing else to live for because he's in prison for violent crimes."
Shortly after the details of Taylor's detention hearing were made public, Drexel's father Chad Drexel posted a statement to Facebook which reads, in part:
On August 27, Taylor was granted bond, but his travel was restricted to South Carolina, he was placed under home detention with GPS monitoring, and a DNA sample was authorized.
WMBF News has reached out to the FBI, Taylor's attorneys, the Drexel family, and local law enforcement for further details on these latest developments in the case. Taylor's attorneys said, "No comment."