Gwinnett County

DA: Missing man's remains were buried across the county

GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. — Channel 2 Action News has uncovered a court document outlining exactly what authorities think happened to a Gwinnett County man who disappeared two years ago.

Samual Waters left his Lawrenceville home in January 2015 with a friend to buy beer. He was never seen again.

That friend, Jeffrey Emerson Moulder, is the lone suspect in Waters’ murder, but has not been charged. Relatives say the two knew each other because they had both fathered children by the same woman.

Prosecutors wanted Moulder’s sister-in-law to tell a grand jury what she knew about Waters’ presumed murder.

His sister-in-law called it a fishing expedition and wanted a judge to block the request.

In response, the district attorney’s office filed a 26-page doozy of a response outlining their case and pointing fingers.

In the court document, prosecutors say Moulder confessed to his girlfriend that he had "placed Samuel in a chokehold and after he rendered him unconscious, he then placed a plastic bag over Samuel's head (suffocating him to death.) (He) then placed Samuel's body in the trunk of his car and drove to the lake house."


Months later, authorities searched the Lake Lanier home and seized a metal barrel, one they say the suspect used to burn the body in before burying the remains in different places around Hall County.

“All the trauma, all the hurt, all the pain, it all comes flooding back,” Waters’ aunt Deborah Layfield said. “It's just heart wrenching.”

Layfield told Channel 2’s Tony Thomas that reading details of what authorities believe happened to her nephew is very hard, but confirms what they've suspected all along.

“We are very hopeful that not only will they be able to move forward and press charges, but also we will be able to find where Samuel's body is buried,” she said. "I think they have quite a bit of evidence."

Prosecutors say their suspect told his ex "she didn't have to worry about Samuel anymore."

The woman told police that Moulder had told her "if he ever killed someone there would be nothing to find." She also said he had the nickname Sandman because he "prided himself on being able to choke people unconscious."

The document also contains what the suspect quoted as Waters last words -- "Why man? Why are you doing this?"

"It's absolutely devastating, and it sounds just like something Samuel would say and that's even more heart wrenching," Layfield said.

In court documents, the Moulder family denied any involvement.

Ultimately his sister-in-law did have to testify before the grand jury on Wednesday. What she said there is secret.

Authorities say they have drafted an indictment for murder.

Court documents claim Moulder checked himself into a mental hospital for a future insanity defense.