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Wife Accused In Disappearance Of Husband's Young Lover Claims They Had An Open Marriage

Tammy Moorer's defense argues there was no reason for her to be jealous of Heather Elvis, who had a brief romance with Sidney Moorer before vanishing.  

By Gina Tron

A South Carolina woman accused of kidnapping her husband’s younger lover wouldn't have been jealous of their affair because the couple had an open relationship, her defense team argued on the second day of her trial. 

Tammy Moorer has been charged in connection with the 2013 vanishing of 20-year-old Heather Elvis, who had an affair with Moorer's husband, Sidney.

The defense team claimed that Moorer had her own boyfriend and also pointed to a 2014 police interview before both Tammy Moorer and her husband were charged, in which Tammy Moorer said they were in an open marriage, according to the New York Post. During that interview, a detective showed her evidence that her husband and Elvis, who worked as a waitress at a local bar called the Tilted Kilt, had rented a hotel room together. The defense said she didn't have an emotional reaction to that revelation and instead Moorer replied that she and her husband had no secrets, according to the New York Post.

However, a Facebook post authored by Tammy Moorer after Elvis vanished may undercut her assertions about an open marriage. She referred to her husband's affair as cheating.

“Well Sidney cheated on me in the months of Sept/Oct with a psycho whore who has since went missing," she wrote.

Laura Garlitz, a realtor who knew Tammy Moorer through their children testified this week that she didn’t think the couple had an open marriage, the Myrtle Beach Sun News reports.


The prosecution doesn’t either. They accuse the couple of kidnapping Elvis after rumors of her becoming pregnant surfaced in town.

Sidney Moorer, then 38, and Elvis met in 2013 at the bar where Elvis worked in Socastee, South Carolina. Moorer did repair work at the establishment. The two quickly became romantic, according to the Charlotte Observer.


Months later it turned darker.

“Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love. It did not end well,” she wrote in one September Twitter post.

Their affair ended in October after Tammy Moorer found out about it, according to Myrtle Beach Online. She then began harassing the young woman with threatening messages, prosecutors say.

Elvis’ roommate Brianna “Bree” Warrelmann told Crime Watch Daily that Tammy “basically tore Heather apart as a human being, and who she was as a person and made her feel horrible about herself.”

Tammy, then 41, even allegedly handcuffed her husband to their bed at night so he couldn't sneak out and he reportedly agreed to save their marriage, according to the Charlotte Observer.

However, she apparently continued to contact Elvis, texting her on Nov. 1: "Hey sweetie ready to meet the Mrs.," according to court documents cited by the New York Post.

Elvis responded in a text saying, “I think you are a little obsessed with me. I’m nobody you need to worry about anymore,” according to the Post.

The paper also reports that Elvis appeared to have been moving on with her life, even beginning to date again, when she received a call from Sidney Moorer the night of Dec. 18, 2013. They spoke for four minutes and Elvis later called a friend to tell them that Sidney Moorer said he was leaving his wife for her.

In the middle of the night - after a few phone calls between Elvis and Sidney Moorer's cell, according to investigators - police believe Elvis drove to a boat landing near Myrtle Beach where her car was later found abandoned. Her body was never found.

Initially, Sidney told police he didn't make the first call, but police had surveillance footage of him at the pay phone that did place a call to Elvis. He then admitted to police he made the call because he told her to "please leave me alone because she had been leaving notes on our car," according to WBTW in Myrtle Beach. Tammy Moorer allegedly admitted to police that she was with Sidney when he made the call.

The same day she vanished, Sidney Moorer was reportedly captured on surveillance footage buying a pregnancy test, though he claimed it was for his wife, according to The State in Columbia. Several of Elvis' coworkers believed she may have been pregnant because of weight gain around her hips, but a previous pregnancy test was inconclusive according to The State. 

The Moorers were arrested in February 2014 on charges of obstruction of justice, according to the New York Post. Charges of kidnapping and murder followed, but the murder charges were dropped in 2016, presumably for lack of evidence.

Sidney Moorer's kidnapping case ended in a mistrial in 2016 when a jury couldn't reach a unanimous verdict, though he is currently in state prison for the obstruction of justice charges, according to the Post.

The couple were indicted on conspiracy of kidnapping charges in 2017.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

[Photo: Facebook, Reuben Long Detention Center]