Alex Murdaugh went to trial in 2021 for the murder of his wife, son

As his life has unfolded over the past two years, South Carolina attorney Alex Murdaugh has not disputed the surrender of his law license and said he did the numerous errors related to missing client funds and financial irregularities resulted in 100 criminal charges.

But he insisted, from the time he found the bodies of his wife and young son shot multiple times on the family estate in June 2021, that he was not the killer. Starting Monday, up to 12 judges will decide whether they agree.

Attorneys expect jury selection to take several days before testimony begins. It will take 13 months of investigation by members of the government to charge Murdaugh with two counts of murder, and the judge has scheduled three weeks for the trial. Murdaugh argued in court as soon as possible.

Prosecutors are not seeking the death penalty, but say they will ask for life without parole if Murdaugh is convicted of murder. The minimum sentence is 30 years.

Here’s an overview of the courtroom and the surrounding scene of hundreds of attorneys and their paralegals, reporters and interested real-life criminals who hope to grow Colletton County’s population of 38,000 in the community. in the back, southern part of the state.


Murdaugh, 54, told police he found Maggie, 52, and their son Paul, 22, dead outside their Colleton County home on June 7, 2021. He said it’s been an hour since he went to visit his sick father and mother.

Authorities released little information about the murders beyond saying Maggie Murdaugh was killed by a gun and Paul Murdaugh by a shotgun.

Prosecutors have not released any direct evidence linking Murdaugh to the deaths. So far no confession or evidence about the killing has been filed in court. There was no evidence on the eve of the trial that a gun was found.

There is a video from Paul Murdaugh’s phone with a time stamp shortly before the murder. The three are talking without any evidence of anger. Alex Murdaugh’s attorney said he did not deny being at his home.

There was DNA from the victims on Alex Murdaugh’s shirt, but his defense said it came from checking for signs of life when he found their bodies.

The defense and prosecution are arguing over whether to allow an expert to testify that the blood on Murdaugh’s shirt was splattered on the shirt when his son was shot. Defense attorneys said the expert who tested the shirt lied and was fired before the defense could conduct their own tests.

Prosecutors hope to rely heavily on evidence of Murdaugh’s financial problems, which they say led him to commit murders to buy time while he covered up his theft of bank deposits from clients.

Prosecutors say the murder earned Murdaugh mercy and, more importantly, allowed him to hide his thefts and other crimes.

Murdaugh’s lawyer said it was absurd to say that Murdaugh thought that his wife and son’s violent death would reduce his financial control.


The murder charges are just two of the approximately 100 different crimes Murdaugh is facing. He is also on trial for two counts of unlawful possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime.

A wide range of state charges still hang over his head. They include the theft of millions of money from customers, forging a wrongful death warrant for the old girl of the family from her family to herself, drug trafficking and money laundering, tax evasion, and fraud from the police report as an attempt to kill someone. so that his surviving son can collect a $10 million life insurance policy.

Murdaugh is also facing multiple civil suits from former customers over a 2019 boating accident that killed a teenager. Police said Paul Murdaugh was driving the boat while intoxicated and was facing criminal charges after the teenager’s death. The teenager’s family was desperately trying to get information about the Murdaugh family’s finances at the time of the 2021 murder.


The Murdaugh name is well known in judicial circles in the South Carolina Lowcountry. Alex Murdaugh has worked for the family law firm that has been doing business in the small suburbs of Hampton County for a century, winning numerous multi-million dollar settlements for serious accidents and workplace injuries.

Murdaugh’s father, grandfather and great-grandfather were elected for 87 straight years in Colleton, Hampton and three other counties.

Naturally, a picture of Murdaugh’s father hangs in the Colletton County Courthouse. Judge Clifton Newman’s decision to withdraw for his son’s trial.


Murdaugh’s downfall has attracted media from around the world and many true crime and other publications. Perhaps the most dangerous trial in South Carolina since Susan Smith was convicted of killing her children and sentenced to life in 1995 in Union County.

Murdaugh’s trial is being held at the historic Colleton County Courthouse in Walterboro, where the largest, oldest courtroom in the South can seat nearly 250 people, or about 5% of the Walterboro’s population is 5,500.

Walterboro calls itself “The Front Porch of the Lowcountry” a gateway to South Carolina’s famous beaches. It sits on the busy Interstate 95 and draws fast food restaurants and many chain hotels along its two highways.

The city last month asked for food trucks to park nearby to help the few downtown restaurants handle the midday rush. On the district’s website for reporters of the case, nine people offered their homes or businesses to the media to be used as a place to broadcast the trial.

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