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Warrant: Man concealed or disposed of evidence on date of Drexel disappearance

Raymond Moody was arrested on May 4 on a charge of obstruction of justice, according to deputies.
Raymond Moody was arrested on May 4 on a charge of obstruction of justice, according to deputies.(Georgetown County Sheriff's Office)
Published: May. 16, 2022 at 12:17 PM EDT

GEORGETOWN COUNTY, S.C. (WCSC) - An arrest warrant for a man once named a person of interest in the 2009 disappearance of a teenager provides new information on his arrest on obstruction of justice.

Raymond Moody was arrested on the charge on May 4.

The arrest warrant alleges that on or about April 25, 2009, and on subsequent dates after that, Moody took “overt actions to conceal and/or dispose of evidence of a crime” that was committed in Georgetown County.

The document does not specify any specific case.

Last week, a background check on Moody from the State Law Enforcement Division confirmed that the date on which the alleged obstruction of justice occurred was April 25, 2009.

That is the same date that 17-year-old Brittanee Drexel vanished from the Grand Strand. The New York teen visited the Palmetto State during her spring break.

Georgetown County Sheriff Carter Weaver will hold a news conference at 2 p.m. Monday to discuss “recent law enforcement activity” in the county, but the brief announcement about the news conference did not elaborate further.

Law enforcement agencies in multiple South Carolina counties have conducted searches for any sign of her over the 13 years since she was last seen outside the Blue Water Resort on Ocean Boulevard in Myrtle Beach.

Investigators named Moody in February of 2012 as a person of interest in Drexel’s disappearance. He is a registered Adult Tier III Offender who was convicted in 1983 of rape by force, kidnapping and lewd act on a child under 14, among other charges.

Capt. David Knipes, the spokesman for the Myrtle Beach Police Department, said Moody received a traffic ticket in Surfside Beach on April 26, 2009, just one day after Drexel went missing.

FBI official David Thomas announced during a June 8, 2016, news conference that the investigation revealed Drexel had been in the McClellanville area for several days after her last sighting in Myrtle Beach.

“The investigation now is that Brittanee Drexel did leave the Myrtle Beach area. We believe she traveled to this area, around McClellanville and North Charleston, south Georgetown area, and we believe she was killed after that.” he said at the news conference.

The FBI said they have evidence Drexel was held against her will in three places, Georgetown, McClellanville and North Charleston.

McClellanville is the location where investigators say her cell phone pinged on a cell tower.

“Forensic evidence from text messages, from cellphones, all kinds of information that we’ve evaluated,” Myrtle Beach police spokesman Lt. Joey Crosby said in June of 2016. “The information that we have, that we’ve obtained through the course of this investigation, we do feel like she is deceased.”

The FBI announced a $25,000 reward for information that leads to the conviction of whoever was responsible for her disappearance and death.

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