Police: Friends of Killed Motorcyclist Altered Scene to Cover Up Fatal Street Race

5 people have been charged — 4 with vehicular homicide — in the April 26 death of Brandon Gaylor.

Gwinnett County, Ga., police news
Gwinnett County, Ga., police news

Police say a fatal accident that killed a motorcyclist in north Gwinnett in April was not as it initially appeared, and now four people are facing vehicular homicide charges.

Gwinnett Police spokesman Cpl. Jake Smith said the scene where Brandon Gaylor, 24, died on April 26 was altered to hide what actually happened — a street race among friends that ended tragically.

The initial report indicated Gaylor was struck by one vehicle, then run over by another on Duncan Creek Road near Buford. “The investigation revealed that these events were not entirely accurate,” Smith said in a statement, “and the scene had been altered prior to police arrival.”

One of the vehicles involved — owned by Gaylor’s girlfriend and believed to be the one which killed him — was hidden before police responded.

Smith said five friends, including Gaylor, had left a Flowery Branch restaurant around 2:30 a.m. on April 26 and were racing down Duncan Creek Road to Gaylor’s house.

Jennifer Schoeppler, Andre Daniels, Titis Newsome and Noelle Gretzinger (the girlfriend) were all involved, and all face first-degree homicide and various other charges. Gaylor was the only one in the group driving a motorcycle.

Smith said the investigation showed Gaylor was leading the group when he slowed down near his house and was struck and knocked down by the car driven by Schoeppler. He was lying in the roadway when he was hit by Gretzinger and died at the scene. Daniels and Newsome avoided hitting Gaylor.

“Investigators determined that Newsome helped Gretzinger hide her vehicle following the accident,” Smith reported. “The remaining two drivers rearranged their vehicles before police arrived.”

After police left, Gretzinger and her father, Gary Woodruff, then hid her vehicle at Woodruff’s house. Smith said investigators found the car and seized it as evidence.

Woodruff, 52, was charged with tampering with evidence and obstruction of a law enforcement officer.

Along with vehicular homicide, the four friends also have been charged with the following crimes:

  • Schoeppler, age 25, reckless driving, racing, speeding, and following too closely.
  • Daniels, 20, reckless driving, racing, speeding, and following too closely.
  • Gretzinger, 24, reckless driving, racing, speeding, following too closely, hit and run, and tampering with evidence.
  • Newsome, 24, reckless driving, racing, hit and run, and tampering with evidence.
Octo Slash May 21, 2014 at 08:28 AM
15 minutes could save them 15%. Well...probably not now. That is some serious chit these youngsters (and one's daddy) did, but I'm sure since they're all probably of mucho means and lighter hues, their folks will pony up for some big time suburban lawyering and the country club judge with the 8 handicap who attends church with the accused's parents will no doubt conduct a quite stern and solemn session of wrist-slapping. Everyone will receive harsh and painful probation...then they'll all meet at the club for a par-3 and gin 'n tonics.
Mickey Crawford May 21, 2014 at 02:26 PM
Sounds oh too familiar. At least some charges were filed. Had they been in the City of Winder they could have all walked away with less than a wrist slapping. That's just how the good ole boy system works up in these parts.
guyonearth May 22, 2014 at 11:18 PM
Most of those charges will probably be dropped. Only the people that actually hit or ran over the guy can be charged with homicide. Most of the other charges will be dismissed for lack of evidence. Without other witnesses or radar clocks it will be hard to make things like speeding stick.
Dave May 30, 2014 at 07:54 AM
Not sure whether the charges will stay or go but you are wrong about your evaluation. Speeding can be determined without radar, etc and anyone involved in a crime can be charged with the more severe crime. They were all racing (the crime) so they can all be charged in the death (the more severe crime.)


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