CHARLESTON, SC (WBTW) – Timothy Taylor, a man allegedly connected to the disappearance of Brittanee Drexel, pleaded guilty Wednesday to robbery charges unrelated to the case of the missing woman.
In 2011, Taylor was charged, arrested and prosecuted in state court for his involvement in a robbery of a local McDonald’s. He cooperated with local authorities, admitted his involvement, and plead guilty to strong armed robbery on July 29, 2013 and completed his probationary sentence.
On June 21, 2016, the federal government filed an indictment charging him with conspiracy to commit armed robbery for the same crime. Taylor faces between 10 and 20 years for his role in the 2011 robbery.
Taylor’s lawyer says prosecutors added the federal charges so Taylor would give evidence in the Brittanee Drexel case.
Drexel was 17 years old when she vanished during her spring break trip to Myrtle Beach in 2009.
Court documents say an FBI agent testified in court that eyewitnesses say Drexel was taken to a stash house in McClellanville where she was gang-raped, shot after trying to escape, and her body was fed to alligators.
In the same documents, Taylor is brought up in connection with Drexel’s disappearance. FBI agents name Tequan Brown as an eyewitness who says Taylor and others sexually abused Drexel. Brown says he saw Drexel try to run from the house and she was pistol whipped, and taken back inside.
Taylor issued the following statement in 2016:
I had no involvement with anything to do with Brittanee Drexel. I don’t know Taquan Brown and I don’t know why he would call my name. I am being prosecuted again for a crime I already helped them solve and already did my time for, all because some guy in prison is trying to cut a deal. It’s not fair to be charged for the same crime twice and that’s not how our system is supposed to work.
The Charleston Post and Courier reports prosecutors say he failed a polygraph about Drexel’s disappearance. If he had passed it, prosecutors said they would have offered “him as little as no prison time.”
The court says they will rule later on Taylor’s motion to dismiss the charges. His attorney claims he shouldn’t be charged due to double jeopardy.