On Wednesday, Raymond Moody, who admitted to murdering missing girl Brittanee Drexel in 2009 while she was on a spring break vacation to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, was given a life sentence. Moody received a 30-year jail term for raping Drexel in addition to the 30-year abduction sentence.
In May, Moody admitted to murdering Drexel, 17, and he brought police to her body. His name has been floating about as a possible suspect in the murder for almost a decade.
Since Moody was located in Georgetown, South Carolina, around the time of Drexel’s disappearance, he was placed on law enforcement’s radar in 2011 when a Drexel family member contacted authorities and recommended they investigate.
On Wednesday, he entered a guilty plea to first-degree criminal sexual conduct, abduction with force, and murder by strangulation.
The investigation team said they revisited mobile phone data and security video in 2019 and 2020 and pinpointed the precise locations where Drexel’s phone had been at various times.
The investigators made a significant breakthrough when they were able to locate the precise spot where she disappeared. At first, Drexel’s mobile phone indicated that she was walking at a normal pace; later, it indicated that she was traveling at 55 mph, which led authorities to conclude that she was in a car.
Investigators were able to identify a car in the corner of the last saw surveillance footage of Drexel by comparing the time of her disappearance to when she was spotted walking and entering a vehicle. Investigators were able to pin identify Drexel’s position using the final walking mobile phone ping and the first vehicle speed ping, and they analyzed camera footage to find that just one vehicle had passed his area at that time.
The authorities were able to connect the car to Moody, and he ultimately confessed to being the driver.
Angel Vause, Moody’s lover, wore a wire as detectives worked with her to gather information on Moody. Investigators searched Moody’s house after obtaining a search warrant but came up empty-handed. However, while conducting the search, FBI agents spoke with Moody face to face.
After being notified that he and Vause were being investigated, Moody agreed to sit down for an interview with the investigators. Moody then admitted to killing Drexel during the interview on May 5th, 2022.
Moody had his sentencing hearing on Wednesday, and Drexel’s relatives asked the court, through tears, to give Moody the maximum punishment possible.
“The things you did to my daughter will always haunt you, and I pray that you feel their sting. Everyone loses today “Brittanee’s mother, Dawn Drexel, spoke during the court on Wednesday.