South Carolina lawyer Alex Murdaugh sentenced to life in prison for killing wife, son

South Carolina lawyer Alex Murdaugh was sentenced to two consecutive life in prison phrases on Friday in the taking pictures deaths of his spouse and son in a case that chronicled the unravelling of a robust southern household with tales of privilege, greed and habit.

Murdaugh, 54, was sentenced by Decide Clifton Newman to life with out the opportunity of parole in the identical courtroom his father, grandfather and great-grandfather every tried circumstances because the elected prosecutor for greater than 80 years. His grandfather’s portrait hung in the again of the room till Newman ordered it taken down for the trial.

The jury deliberated for lower than three hours Thursday earlier than discovering Murdaugh responsible on account of investigations  stemming from the June 7, 2021, taking pictures deaths of Murdaugh’s spouse, Maggie, and youngest son, Paul. The South Carolina lawyer additionally stole hundreds of thousands of {dollars} from largely poor purchasers’ settlements and staged an try on his life to safe his surviving son, Buster, a $12 million US life insurance coverage payout, in accordance to authorities.

“I am harmless. I might by no means harm my spouse, Maggie, and I might by no means harm my son Paw Paw,” Murdaugh mentioned in temporary feedback on Friday, utilizing his nickname for his deceased son.


His 52-year-old spouse was shot 4 or 5 occasions with a rifle and their 22-year-old son was shot twice with a shotgun on the kennels close to their rural Colleton County house.

South Carolina officers speak to the media after Murdaugh’s conviction on Thursday night exterior the Colleton County Courthouse. The case has attracted throngs of media to a county with a inhabitants of about 40,000 folks. (Chris Carlson/The Related Press)

Prosecutors did not have the weapons used to kill the Murdaughs or different direct proof like confessions or blood spatter. However that they had a mountain of circumstantial proof, led by a video locked on the son’s cellphone for greater than a 12 months — video shot minutes earlier than the killings that witnesses testified captured the voices of Alex, Maggie and Paul Murdaugh.

Testimony culminated in Murdaugh’s look on the witness stand, the place he steadfastly maintained his innocence in the deaths of his spouse and son.

Admitted mendacity about whereabouts

Murdaugh had informed police repeatedly after the killings that he was not on the kennels and was as an alternative napping earlier than he went to go to his ailing mom that evening. Murdaugh known as 911 and mentioned he found the our bodies when he returned house. However in his testimony on the twenty third day of trial, Murdaugh admitted becoming a member of Maggie and Paul on the kennels, however mentioned he headed again to the home shortly forward of the deadly shootings.

He blamed his decades-long habit to opioids for making him paranoid, making a mistrust of police. He mentioned that when he went down that path, he felt trapped in the lie.

WATCH | Murdaugh takes the stand in his defence:

South Carolina man testifies at his double homicide trial

Alex Murdaugh, a as soon as outstanding South Carolina lawyer, denied killing his spouse and son as he testified in his personal defence at his double homicide trial. Prosecutors allege Murdaugh killed his youngest son, Paul, and his spouse, Maggie, as a part of an elaborate cover-up scheme.

By greater than 75 witnesses and almost 800 items of proof, jurors heard not simply concerning the grisly crime scene, however about betrayed buddies and purchasers, Murdaugh’s failed try to stage his personal dying in an insurance coverage fraud scheme, a deadly 2019 boat crash in which Paul was charged, and the 2018 dying of housekeeper Gloria Satterfield, who died in a fall on the Murdaugh house.

The now-disbarred lawyer admitted stealing hundreds of thousands of {dollars} from the household agency and purchasers, saying he wanted the cash to fund his drug behavior.

Two outdoor structures are seen on a patch of dried land amid a forest of trees.The hangar and canine kennels are seen the place the our bodies of Paul and Maggie have been discovered in Islandton, S.C. (Andrew J. Whitaker/The Publish And Courier/The Related Press)


That listing included the household of Satterfield. Murdaugh is accused of pocketing a multimillion-dollar wrongful dying insurance coverage payout associated to the 57-year-old housekeeper’s dying.

Earlier than he was charged with homicide, Murdaugh was in jail awaiting trial on about 100 different costs starting from insurance coverage fraud to tax evasion.

Prosecutor Creighton Waters on Friday characterised him as a “crafty manipulator.”

The Murdaugh household regulation agency grew to dozens of attorneys over time by suing railroads, firms and different huge companies. One other brother stays on the agency based a century in the past.

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