The Georgetown County Sheriff’s Office confirmed today that the remains found last week in Georgetown are those of Brittanee Drexel, who disappeared from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina back in April, 2009.
Her remains were found on May 11, 2022, in a wooded area of Georgetown, South Carolina, near the Harmony Township subdivision.
Authorities have charged 62 year old Raymond Moody with rape, murder and kidnapping in connection to her disappearance. He remains in custody.
According to arrest warrants, Drexel’s cause of death was manual strangulation by Moody, while in the limits of Georgetown County. It could take weeks for a clearer cause of death to be released, as of Monday an official cause of death is still pending.
Her remains were found approximately 2.5 miles from a motel where Moody had been living when Brittanee disappeared. Investigators believe Moody buried her on April 26, 2009, the day after she went missing.
Moody was jailed a few weeks ago on an obstruction of justice charge that dated back to April 25, 2009, the same day Brittanee disappeared.
Brittanee Drexel’s Disappearance
17 year old Brittanee Drexel was last seen in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina on April 25, 2009. She disappeared after sneaking away for spring break.
In April of 2009, Brittanee told her mother she was planning to travel to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina for spring break with her friends and boyfriend. Her mother refused and they argued about it for days.
On April 22, 2009, Brittanee eventually got permission to go to a friend’s home for a couple of days to calm down. Instead, she left Rochester that night for a trip to Myrtle Beach with three friends, against her mother’s wishes.
On April 23, 2009, she called her mother upon her arrival at the Bar Harbor Hotel at 1010 North Ocean Boulevard in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. She said that she was at the beach with friends, which her mother assumed was at nearby Charlotte Beach in New York State.
On April 24, 2009, Brittanee spent the night out with friends at Club Kryptonite, a local nightclub between US 17 Bypass and 29th Avenue North.
On April 25, 2009, Brittanee spent time with friends around noon on the beach near the Bluewater Resort, another hotel on Ocean Boulevard, before returning to her room.
That evening, she headed out alone from the Bar Harbor Hotel around 8:00 pm to meet a friend who was staying at Blue Water Resort, about one and a half miles south of the boulevard.
Around 8:45 pm, Brittanee was captured by surveillance cameras leaving the Blue Water Resort. She texted her boyfriend, who stayed in Rochester, saying she was walking back to her room at the Bar Harbor Hotel.
Between 9:00 and 9:15 pm, she suddenly stopped responding to his calls and texts. Brittanee never returned to her hotel room that night and has never been heard from again.
Her boyfriend started calling friends in Myrtle Beach to see if they knew where she was or what happened. Unable to find answers he called Brittanee’s mother to let her know, who wasn’t aware she had been in Myrtle Beach until that point.
Later in the evening, Brittanee’s mother contacted the Rochester police when all calls and texts to Brittanee’s phone went unanswered.
Myrtle Beach police started looking for Brittanee the morning after she disappeared, and located the surveillance camera footage from the Blue Harbor Hotel.
Brittanee left all her personal belongings in her hotel room, except her beige purse and pink cellular phone.
Police tracked her phone’s last signal to an area along U.S. Route 17 near the Georgetown County and Charleston County line. The signal stopped abruptly on the morning of April 26, 2009.
Police identified the friend Brittanee went out to meet at the Blue Water Resort as Peter Brozowitz, a 20 year old nightclub promoter at a club from the Rochester area. He denied any knowledge of Brittanee’s whereabouts.
On June 8, 2016, the FBI confirmed that Brittanee Drexel’s case is considered a homicide. They revealed their belief that she was held captive in McClellanville for four days before being murdered.
In 2016 authorities announced Raymond Moody as a person of interest in Brittanee’s case.
Moody, a registered sex offender, was stopped by police for a traffic violation near Myrtle Beach the day after Brittanee disappeared.
He spent 21 years in prison for the abduction and rape of a 9 year old girl back in 1983, and has been considered a suspect in similar cases but has never been charged.
On May 4, 2022, Moody was charged with obstruction of justice and taken to the Georgetown County Detention Center.
On May 16, 2022, it was announced that Moody was charged with rape, murder and kidnapping in her disappearance. He remains in custody.