MONROE (WTOL) - Gregory Moore Jr. has been a rising star for Monroe County Republicans since being elected to the board of commissioners in 2016.
His youth, good looks, strong roots in the community, and family-first, conservative values have resonated with local party leaders. Despite being a relative newcomer to county politics, he is currently the vice chairman of the board.
On his political Facebook page, the bold slogan “Expect More. Demand More” serves as the headline for his page.
But his actions in the early morning of Feb. 13 have led at least one fellow commissioner to question whether Moore lives up to that own campaign catchphrase.
“I supported Greg Moore since he’s come on the board, but in the last few months, he’s been a grave disappointment to me,” Commissioner Gary Wilmoth told 11 Investigates. “I no longer support him.”
Wilmoth’s change of heart is directly tied to that February morning.
According to a Monroe County Sheriff’s department report, Moore was driving eastbound on Temperance Road in Lambertville when he went around multiple road closed signs. The report said his pickup hit a tree lying across the road, just past Summerfield Road, traveled about 15 feet, then came to a stop after hitting another tree near Timberlake Drive.
Rather than call 911 and report the accident, Moore had his wife pick him up and called a towing company in the morning. He later told a deputy that he was too embarrassed to call 911 since he sits on the 911 board.
His decision to abandon his truck in the middle of the road resulted in a Failure to Report an Accident misdemeanor. His initial court appearance has been set for May 6 in Monroe’s 1st District Court.
When 11 Investigates called up the current case on the court’s site, it was one of several cases linked to Moore in Monroe County. Going back to when he began driving in 1997, more than 30 traffic violations are listed in the court’s records.
Additional tickets from other parts of Michigan and Ohio were discovered during a request to the state of Michigan for his driving record. There are at least 18 speeding tickets on his record.
Michigan only keeps traffic violations for the previous 10 years on a driver’s record. That means that there is no way to determine if there are additional tickets – outside of Monroe County – prior to 2009. A March 7, 2002, Unlawful Bodily Alcohol Content charge remains on his official record. According to 1st District Court records, at the time of the alcohol-related charge, Moore was awaiting a court appearance for an Underage Possession charge.
Shortly after the Feb. 13 incident, Moore posted a Facebook video, saying he had a rebellious period, filled with speeding and drinking, between the ages of 16 to 23. He did not deny that in a short interview with 11 Investigates.
But his current driving record, which includes nine speeding tickets, was established long after when the 37-year-old Moore was in his “rebellious” period.
After a recent commissioners meeting, Moore refused to talk about the accident or his driving record, despite being given several opportunities by 11 Investigates.
In the Facebook video, which is no longer online, Moore seemed to suggest that his February accident wasn’t that serious since the airbags did not deploy.
The fact the bags didn’t deploy shocked responders to the scene.
In sheriff’s department body cam video obtained by 11 Investigates, one of the responders said: “I can’t believe the [expletive] airbags didn’t go off. How did the airbags not go off in this [expletive]?”
Moore’s truck hit the trees with such force that the windshield shattered and debris still litters the side of Temperance Road. Some of the debris spilled into the surrounding ditches.
In a March commissioners meeting, Wilmoth made a motion to begin the process of removing Moore from the board, and the motion was seconded by commissioner David Hoffman. But only Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer can remove an elected commissioner from the board.
The board, however, could hold a due process hearing and decide to strip Moore of his vice chairmanship. Wilmoth says he will make that motion if Moore is found guilty next month.
“I think that us, once we are elected, we have the responsibility to be as good as we can in following the law,” Wilmoth said.
His determination to hold his fellow board member accountable for any wrongdoing was reinforced with information about Moore’s driving record.
“I didn’t know that he had those speeding tickets, but now it doesn’t surprise me.”