Canvass – NYE partygoers
YCSD investigators talked to people who attended a New Year's Eve party with Daniel Collier on December 31, 2020, at John W. Kyle State Park, west of Oxford.
The partygoers were asked for information on the potentially-missing 20-year-old Daniel Collier, including their last interactions with him.
The interviews summarized represent all persons known to be in attendance at the party, with the exception of Daniel Coller, Brandon Ebner, and Axyl Floyd.
Alexis Arant, who her friends and family call Lexi, was at the December 31, 2020, party at John Kyle State Park. Arant arrived at the party at around 9:00 p.m. with her boyfriend Alex "Axyl" Floyd and a mutual friend, Troy Saffold. She reported that four other individuals were already at the cabin prior to her arrival: Daniel Collier, Brandon Ebner, Claire Rivas, and Keanu May.
Lexi said that Axyl and Troy were going to the cabin to buy marijuana from Keanu May since he had a reputation for being a small-time drug dealer with a high-class product. Axyl told Lexi that since Keanu had been in attendance at the last three shows Axyl's death metal band, Desolate Hours, had played, Keanu might give Axyl a bargain-basement price on his drugs.
When Keanu declined Axyl's request to buy marijuana, Lexi said Dan asked Axyl if he could borrow some of the money to go to New York to become an artist there. Dan said he'd pay Axyl back double. Axyl agreed to the terms, but Lexi didn't know how much money Axyl lent Dan.
A month after the party, Lexi saw that Dan was posting on his Facebook page about his move to New York City. Since Dan never responded to Axyl about repayment online or otherwise, Lexi felt Dan had forgotten all about Axyl's loan. According to Lexi, Axyl was enraged that he wasn't getting his money back and still isn't over it today.
Keanu May hosted the New Year's Eve party at John Kyle State Park. His father, Kymani May, rented the cabin so Keanu and his friends could ring in the New Year as noisily as they wished without disrupting the May household's peaceful night's sleep.
Keanu said he only invited a couple of people to the party since Cabin 5B isn't very large, and he has a tight-knit group of friends anyway. He invited Claire Rivas, Brandon Ebner, Daniel Collier, and Mitch Freedman. The former three arrived at around 5:00 p.m. Mitch got ill and never showed up.
Keanu reported that the four friends were playing darts when, at around 9:00 p.m., three others arrived: Lexi Arant, Troy Saffold, and Axyl Floyd. Keanu wasn't angry that Floyd's crew crashed his party until Axyl asked Keanu if he had some of his dad's marijuana for sale.
Keanu told Axyl that he didn't have any drugs and that it was just a rumor that he was a dealer. Axyl got angry because he didn't believe him, saying that Keanu was holding out on him. At this time, Keanu said, Dan intervened and asked Axyl how much money he had to spend on drugs.
Dan made a deal with Axyl to loan him the money instead. Keanu thought Dan made the deal to calm Axyl down as much as Dan needed the money.
Afterward, the party continued until 3:00 a.m., and Keanu reported that everyone was cool. Keanu said the party was the last time he saw or spoke to Dan.
Claire Rivas is one of Keanu May's closest friends and the first person Keanu invited to his New Year's Eve party at John Kyle State Park. Claire arrived at Cabin 5B by the reservoir at around 4:45 p.m.; she said that only Keanu was there when she got there.
Claire reported being a bit nervous since she'd had a crush on Dan Collier since he was a senior and she was only a freshman. This party was the first time that she was going to be at an overnight party with him. At the party, though, Claire said that Dan was a perfect gentleman as always. Dan told her that he was going to New York and that they should stay in touch online.
Claire said they all had a fun night playing darts and telling stories. At about 1:30 a.m., Dan went out with Brandon Ebner to smoke a cigarette down by the water's edge. Claire said that she quickly went to the bathroom and then followed the two boys out.
As she approached Dan and Brandon, she could hear them arguing about something, so she stopped. Then, even though they were just silhouettes against the water, Claire was sure that Brandon shoved Dan. Surprised, Claire didn't join the boys and went back to the cabin instead.
In the last couple of months, Claire said that she has viewed Dan's Facebook page, but he never messaged or emailed her like he said he would. She was brokenhearted to see that he posted that he had a new girlfriend in New York and had completely forgotten about her.
Troy Saffold is the drummer for Axyl Floyd's band, Desolate Hours. He admitted that he went to Keanu May's New Year's Eve party with Axyl Floyd and Lexi Arant to score some weed on the rumor that Keanu would be smoking away the remainder of 2020.
Troy was surprised when he got to the party, and no one was smoking, drinking, or anything. When Keanu said he didn't have any marijuana, Troy wanted to leave, but Axyl said he wanted to stay since he had just lent all his cash to Dan Collier, so they wouldn't have money for the bar. Troy said he was mad because Axyl had driven Lexi and him there, so they were stuck at the cabin until Axyl was ready to leave.
Dan Collier gave Troy a cigarette and told him to come outside because he had something to show him, so Troy went outside. Dan opened the trunk of his car and pulled out a bottle of 100-proof Southern Comfort and a handle of Jim Beam bourbon.
Troy said he was satisfied with that discovery, and he, Dan, Brandon, and Axyl all started drinking. Troy said he remembers the New Year rolling around, but anything that happened after midnight was a complete blur. When Troy woke to use the bathroom at 5:00 a.m., Dan and Brandon were gone.
Troy claimed that once Dan got to New York, Dan told Axyl he wasn't going to repay the loan, which made Axyl angry. In February, Troy had an opportunity for a side gig, drumming with the punk band, Forever Ride the Rebels, on their 2020 Atlantic Coast tour. The tour ended in New York, so Troy attempted to find Dan to get Axyl's money back.
Despite going to places that Dan had pictured on his Facebook page, Troy could find no one that knew Dan at any of these locations, so he wasn't able to connect with him.