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Alex Murdaugh trial – live: Killer flashes soft smile in new mugshot as attorney bemoans hate mail

Alex Murdaugh’s new mugshot has been released by South Carolina’s Department of Corrections, capturing the convicted killer smiling softly as he begins a lifetime behind bars.

As Murdaugh remains in the state’s custody, his defence attorney has spoken out to claim he has received hate mail after representing him in his high-profile murder trial.

Dick Harpootlian, who is also a state senator, said he had receieved messages calling him a “piece of scum” or hoping that he dies of “rectal cancer”.

His comments came the same day that the juror now known as “egg juror” released a statement asking to be left alone.

The woman hit headlines when she was dismissed from the panel hours before deliberations began because she had been caught speaking about the case to other people.

When she was excused, she sparked laughter in the courtroom as she asked for “a dozen eggs” to be returned to her from the jury room.

Now, four other jurors have spoken out about convicting Murdaugh of shooting dead his wife Maggie and son Paul.

They agreed that the key piece of evidence proving Murdaugh’s guilt was a damning cellphone video taken minutes before the murders.

Alex Murdaugh murder trial

Moselle’s dark history

16:00 , Rachel Sharp

The Murdaugh family estate had a dark past before Maggie and Paul were killed there in June 2021.

Bordering the banks of the Salkehatchie River, 4147 Moselle Road consists of over 1,700 acres of land including a 5,275-square-foot house, a farm, a two-mile stretch of river – and of course the dog kennels.

Before the Murdaughs called Moselle home, the property was tied to another controversial family.

It was the home of Barrett Boulware – a fisherman, suspected drug smuggler and Alex Murdaugh’s longtime friend and business partner who died in 2018.

An aerial view of the Moselle estate including the kennels and feed room

He and his father were arrested on drug smuggling charges in 1980 when investigators seized 15 tons of marijuana from a shrimp boat in the Bahamas.

The charges were later dropped when a key government witness died.

Boulware’s name cropped up during the murder trial when jurors heard that Murdaugh had stolen $750,000 in insurance money from his friend when he was dying of colon cancer.

How a juror with a dozen eggs may have changed the verdict

15:30 , Rachel Sharp

The verdict in Alex Murdaugh’s high-profile double murder trial could have turned out to be very different – if it hadn’t been for the actions of a juror with a dozen eggs.

The once-powerful legal dynasty heir was convicted on Thursday of shooting dead his wife Maggie and son Paul in a heinous crime at the family’s 1,700-acre Moselle estate in Islandton, South Carolina, back on 7 June 2021.

The panel of 12 jurors deliberated for less than three hours before they unanimously found him guilty of all charges – two counts of murder and two weapons charges.

But the removal of a juror just hours before the deliberations got underway could have changed the course of the convicted killer’s fate, according to an insider.

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp has the full story:

How did a juror with some eggs impact the Alex Murdaugh verdict so drastically?

Where will Murdaugh go to prison?

15:00 , Rachel Sharp

It is not yet clear where Alex Murdaugh will spend his days behind bars, but he is expected to land at one of South Carolina’s seven maximum security prisons, which only house violent criminals.

Upon leaving sentencing, he was to be handed over to the custody of the South Carolina Department of Corrections (SCDOC) and taken to the Kirkland Correctional Institution in Columbia.

All male inmates are originally taken to this facility after sentencing, which is one of the state’s maximum security prisons.

Once there, he is expected to have a two-month evaluation including mental and physical health checks.

This evaluation – together with the inmate classification system – will be used to determine which prison Murdaugh will be sent to spend the duration of his sentence.

The evaluation process takes about 45 days, the SCDOC said in a statement following Murdaugh’s sentencing.

The maximum security options include: Broad River Correctional Institution in Columbia; Broad River Secure Facility in Columbia; McCormick Correctional Institution in McCormick; Perry Correctional Institution in Pelzer; Kirkland Correctional Institution in Columbia; and Lee Correctional Institution in Bishopville.

Infamous ‘egg juror’ in Alex Murdaugh’s murder trial asks to be left alone

14:30 , Rachel Sharp

The juror who earned the infamous nickname of the “egg juror” in Alex Murdaugh’s double murder trial has released a statement asking to be left alone.

The woman, identified as juror 785 in South Carolina’s so-called “trial of the century”, said that it is “not her desire” to speak publicly about the case and is requesting that the public and the media refrain from trying to contact her.

“While other jurors have chosen to comment, which is their prerogative, that is not her desire at this time,” her attorney Joe McCulloch said in a statement.

“Given her public service for the weeks of trial, she earned through her public service the right to have her wishes respected. She wishes you to know that she took the juror oath and all of the subsequent court’s instructions seriously and believes she followed them appropriately.”

Read the full story here:

Infamous ‘egg juror’ in Alex Murdaugh’s murder trial asks to be left alone

Murdaugh’s attorney reveals he has gotten hate mail over trial

14:00 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh’s defence attorney has revealed he has received hate mail after representing the now-convicted killer in his high-profile murder trial.

Dick Harpootlian, who is also a state senator, spoke about the case on the South Carolina Senate floor on Tuesday.

He claimed that he had been sent messages from people calling him a “piece of scum” or hoping that he dies of “rectal cancer”.

“Not all of them wished rectal cancer on me, but most were fairly critical,” he said.

Mr Harpootlian, who is also representing Murdaugh on his string of other alleged crimes – said he believes the people wishing him ill don’t understand the criminal justice system.

“While they’re very familiar with the Second Amendment, they apparently haven’t read the Fourth, the Fifth, the Sixth and the Eighth Amendments that [guarantee our freedoms] of ourselves and our property,” he said.

“You don’t have to convince me you’re innocent for me to represent you. That’s not the issue. The issue is, can the state prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt?

“Once you decide that position, you are free to do what is in your client’s best interest.”

Why did Alex Murdaugh kill his wife and son?

13:30 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh will now spend the rest of his years behind bars after being sentenced to life in prison for the heinous double murder of his wife Maggie and son Paul.

The disgraced attorney was handed two sentences of life without parole on Friday in a case that has rocked the community in Hampton County, South Carolina, and captivated America for the best part of two years.

Jurors took less than three hours to reach their unanimous verdict, deciding that – beyond any reasonable doubt – Murdaugh killed his wife and son that fateful night.

On 7 June 2021, Maggie and Paul were brutally gunned down by the dog kennels on the powerful family’s vast 1,700-acre Moselle estate.

Murdaugh shot his son, 22, twice with a 12-gauge shotgun while he stood in the feed room of the dog kennels – the second shot to his head blowing his brain almost entirely out of his skull.

After killing Paul, prosecutors said Murdaugh then grabbed a .300 Blackout semiautomatic rifle and opened fire on Maggie as she tried to flee. She was shot five times including twice in the head after she had fallen to her knees.

But why did he do it? Why did he slaughter his wife and son? What was his motive?

Why did Alex Murdaugh kill his wife and son? Here’s the motive from prosecutors

Buster Murdaugh files police complaint about media

13:00 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh’s only surviving son Buster has filed a police report claiming that he is being harassed by members of the media.

In the police report, filed with Beaufort County Sheriff’s office on Sunday, Buster complained about photos of him and his girlfriend Brooklynne White inside his Hilton Head home which appeared in the New York Post.

He said that the couple had reviewed ring camera video and noticed a suspicious grey Dodge Challenger outside the home on Saturday evening.

They believe the occupant took the photos.

Sometime later, Ms White told police the vehicle was following her.

Officers pulled over the vehicle for speeding and making an improper lane change and found the driver had camera equipment in the car.

They received a warning about a traffic violation.

Police said they would also increase patrols around Buster’s home.

Alex Murdaugh’s attorney makes bizarre – chicken-related – Twitter return

12:30 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh’s attorney has made a bizarre – and chicken-related – return to Twitter after he received a dressing down from the judge for his social media posts during the high-profile murder trial.

On Saturday, defence attorney Jim Griffin tweeted a photo of himself with his face in a wooden cut-out photo prop of a cowboy riding a chicken.

“Walterboro, you were a gracious host. Happy Trails,” he wrote.

The bizarre post marked his first since 18 February, when a tweet landed him in hot water with Judge Clifton Newman.

Read more here:

Alex Murdaugh’s attorney makes bizarre chicken-related Twitter return after trial

‘Egg juror’ asks to be left alone

12:00 , Rachel Sharp

The woman who became known as the “egg juror” has released a statement asking to be left alone.

The woman hit headlines when she was dismissed from the panel last Thursday – just hours before deliberations began and jurors returned a guilty verdict.

Judge Clifton Newman had announced that the female juror was being removed from the panel for discussing the case with at least three other people. She had also given her opinion about the evidence she had seen in the case.

After telling the defence and prosecution his decision in the courtroom, Judge Newman brought the juror in and told her she was being removed.

The woman then prompted some light-hearted relief in the courtroom when she was asked if she had left anything in the jury room.

“A dozen eggs,” she replied.

This sparked laughter from Judge Newman, the defence and the prosecution – and even Murdaugh – as court staff were instructed to go and collect her eggs from the jury room to return to her.

Now, the juror has released a statement through her attorney saying that she does not want to speak out.

The story of Alex Murdaugh’s spectacular fall from grace

11:30 , Rachel Sharp

Powerful South Carolina legal scion Alex Murdaugh became the centre of the state’s “trial of the century” over the brutal double murder of his wife and son.

But this is far from the only twist in a bizarre and sprawling tale of unexplained deaths, hitman plots and multi-million-dollar fraud schemes.

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp delves into the saga:

The story of Alex Murdaugh’s spectacular fall from grace

Who were the faces in the courtroom?

11:00 , Rachel Sharp

Dick Harpootlian

Dick Harpootlian, 74, was one of Murdaugh’s lead defence attorneys in his murder trial.

Prior to representing Murdaugh, he has had a long career as a prosecutor.

He has prosecuted several high-profile cases including the corruption trial of former University of South Carolina President Jim Holderman and the murder trial of serial killer Donald “Pee Wee” Gaskins.

As well as being a prominent lawyer, Mr Harpootlian is also a state senator, representing South Carolina’s 20th district.

Jim Griffin

Jim Griffin, 60, was Murdaugh’s other lead defence attorneys in his murder trial.

Mr Griffin has also had a long career focused predominantly on working as defence attorney in white-collar crime cases.

Alex Murdaugh, Maggie Fox, Dick Harpootlian and Jim Griffin talk while on a break during the trial

As well as the murder case, both Mr Harpootlian and Mr Griffin are representing Murdaugh in his slew of other charges including his financial fraud trial.

The duo – who like Murdaugh attended University of South Carolina School of Law – was also previously hired to represent Paul in the boat crash case.

Creighton Waters

Creighton Waters was the lead prosecutor in the murder case against Murdaugh.

As the chief prosecutor for the state’s grand jury, he has worked for the South Carolina Attorney General’s Office for more than 24 years.

His case against Mr Murdaugh was centred on the theory that the disgraced attorney killed his wife and son to distract from his string of alleged scandals and financial crimes that were on the brink of being exposed.

Prosecutor Creighton Waters questions witness Chris Wilson during the trial

Judge Clifton Newman

South Carolina Circuit Courts Judge Clifton Newman was the judge presiding over the high-profile murder trial.

He was first elected to the court by the South Carolina General Assembly in 2000 and was re-elected in 2021, with his term due to end in 2027.

Throughout the trial, the judge largely sided with the prosecution in a series of motions and objections – including allowing the state to bring evidence of Murdaugh’s financial crimes as a possible motive for the murders.

Judge Clifton Newman presides over Alex Murdaugh’s double murder trial

However, he also awarded some big wins to the defence – including ruling that several witnesses cannot bring evidence about the roadside shooting incident and that Maggie’s sister could not testify about Mr Murdaugh’s alleged affair several years ago.

The judge then did a u-turn on the roadside shooting testimony on 15 February, after the defence brought the incident up – paving the way for the state to also enter evidence.

VOICES: Will Alex Murdaugh remember what brought him down?

10:30 , Rachel Sharp

“Alex Murdaugh is now slated to spend the rest of his life in prison for the murders of his wife Maggie and son Paul. The astonishing murder trial delivered its final twist on Thursday evening when the jury returned its guilty verdict after less than three hours — a tiny fraction of the time they listened to unspeakably gruesome testimony about the killings.

“While some of the 12 jurors may elect to reveal their identities and speak to the media in the coming days, as one already has, we’ll likely never have a full picture of what happened in the deliberation room. But having followed the courtroom circus in the most minute detail from our New York newsroom, there’s little doubt in my mind that the verdict hinged on one out of 75 witnesses: Murdaugh himself.”

The Independent’s Megan Sheets writes:

Will Alex Murdaugh remember what brought him down?

Prosecutor Creighton Waters becomes overnight social media sensation

10:00 , Rachel Sharp

Lead prosecutor Creighton Waters has become an overnight social media sensation after he secured a conviction in Alex Murdaugh’s murder trial.

Mr Waters led the state to victory last week when Murdaugh was found guilty of all charges over his wife and son’s killings.

After the jury reached its verdict, he launched a Twitter account for the first time – and has been delighting his new following ever since.

In his latest tweet on Tuesday, Murdaugh shared a clip of his fish tank, writing: “Have a saltwater tank going without stop since 1993. The clownfish - was named for Jadaveon back in 2010. He is 12 yo. Wrasse is Zoko and Damsel is Sokka.”

Alex Murdaugh associate Russell Laffitte is denied new trial over financial fraud charges

09:30 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh’s associate Russell Laffitte has been denied a new trial on charges that he helped the convicted killer and financial fraudster steal millions from his law firm clients.

US District Judge Richard Gergel denied Laffitte’s request for a new trial on Monday – four days after Murdaugh was found guilty of killing his wife Maggie and son Paul in a brutal double murder which prosecutors said was motivated by the disgraced attorney’s efforts to cover up his string of financial crimes.

Laffitte, the former CEO of Palmetto State Bank, was convicted in November of financial fraud charges in connection to Murdaugh’s alleged white collar fraud schemes.

His conviction came on the basis that he was Murdaugh’s co-defendant in his sprawling multi-million-dollar – and decade-long – schemes.

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp reports:

Alex Murdaugh friend Russel Laffitte is denied new trial on financial fraud charges

Who was the man in the yellow suit at Murdaugh trial?

09:00 , Rachel Sharp

Throughout the six-week trial, viewers of Alex Murdaugh’s double murder trial were often captivated by the so-called “man in the yellow suit”.

Chatter on social media repeatedly turned to Dr Wendell Butterfield, an 80-year-old man tasked with the security of Judge Clifton Newman who often sported eccentric, colourful outfits as he sat in the courtroom in Colleton County Courthouse.

Mandy Matney, a local journalist and podcast host who has followed the Murdaugh case for years, pointed out Dr Butterfield’s dashing yellow suit back on 2 March.

“CHECK OUT THAT YELLOW SUIT,” she tweeted.

Several other social media users commented on the outfit with one saying it “brought the sunshine today” as Murdaugh’s guilty verdict came hours later.

Dr Butterfield told The Daily Beast he was surprised to learn his outfit choices had made him the talk of the trial.

“I had no idea that my suit choices were making quite a stir,” he said. “It’s been surreal.”

Alex Murdaugh’s brother Randy thinks he ‘is not telling the truth’ about murders

08:30 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh’s brother Randy has broken his silence to reveal what he really thinks happened on the night that the disgraced attorney’s wife Maggie and son Paul were gunned down in a brutal crime that shocked South Carolina’s Lowcountry and captured the nation’s attention for the better part of two years.

Randy became the first family member of the disgraced attorney to speak out after the high-profile trial, where Murdaugh was convicted of all charges and sentenced to life in prison.

The 56-year-old admitted that he believes his sibling “is not telling the truth” about the 7 June 2021 killings.

“He knows more than what he’s saying,” Randy told The New York Times.

“He’s not telling the truth, in my opinion, about everything there.”

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp reports:

Alex Murdaugh’s brother Randy reveals what he really thinks happened night of murders

What will happen to the Murdaugh’s Moselle estate?

08:00 , Rachel Sharp

In the months after the murders, Alex Murdaugh put Moselle on the market and it is currently under offer for a $3.9m bid from a mystery buyer.

The property was first listed in February 2022 – eight months after Maggie and Paul’s murders and five months before Murdaugh was charged with them – under a new name of Cross Swamp Farm.

It was later changed back to Moselle Farm.

According to the listing by the Crosby Land Co. of Colleton County, Moselle consists of 1,772 acres of “an unusually diverse habitat with varying forest types and age class distribution”.

“The landscape includes productive pine plantations, open fallow fields, and mature stands of mixed pine/hardwood, those upland regions give way to the flat bottomland of the Salkehatchie River Basin,” it reads.

A view from where Maggie Murdaugh was found at the Murdaugh Moselle property on Wednesday

The feed room where Paul Murdaugh’s body was found at the Murdaugh Moselle property on Wednesday

“The property boasts over 2.5 miles of river frontage, offering freshwater fishing, kayaking, and abundant deer, turkey, and waterfowl populations.”

The family home was built in 2011 and consists of four bedrooms and 3.5 baths, meaning it could “easily be converted into a weekend hunting lodge with the capability to sleep up to 15 people”, the listing reads.

“This is truly a top-tier property, complete with all the improvements and amenities one would expect from a high-end sporting property with little or no deferred maintenance cost,” it reads.

A buyer – said to be a local landowner – put in an offer in June 2022. But the sale was put on hold when Murdaugh was accused of trying to offload his assets to avoid paying up in a string of lawsuits he is facing, prompting a court to freeze his assets.

The hanger and dog kennels are seen where the bodies of Paul Murdaugh and Maggie were found at the Moselle property on Wednesday (AP)
The hanger and dog kennels are seen where the bodies of Paul Murdaugh and Maggie were found at the Moselle property on Wednesday (AP)

VOICES: We knew the Alex Murdaugh case was complicated - but this is deeper than anyone could have expected

07:30 , Rachel Sharp

“When Paul and Maggie Murdaugh were gunned down at their family’s hunting estate in the summer of 2021, few people outside of their South Carolina community had heard their names before. Nationally, it was a shocking double murder of a mother and adult son who hailed from a wealthy family. But beyond that, the Murdaugh name held no significance.

“In fact, the name itself sparked much discussion as true crime enthusiasts, curious members of the public and journalists new to the family’s cases — myself included — toyed with the pronunciation. Is it Mur-doe? Or Mur-daw? I think it could be Mur-dock? Is the father and husband Alec or Alex? (It’s pronounced Alec Murdock for anyone still unsure.)

“But, as I began digging into the case in the days after the murders, it quickly became clear how much weight the name held in the local community.”

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp writes:

The Murdaugh case was complicated - but this is deeper than anyone expected | Voices

How Alex Murdaugh’s son helped seal his guilty verdict from beyond the grave

07:00 , Rachel Sharp

Since birth, he enjoyed the privileges that came from being the heir to a local legal dynasty.

For a decade he got away with stealing millions of dollars from his law firm, legal clients and friends.

And for 13 months he evaded justice after murdering his wife and adult son in a brutal fashion on the family’s estate.

But, in the end, Alex Murdaugh’s crimes caught up with him.

And it was his own son who unknowingly helped cement his downfall from beyond the grave with a damning 50-second cellphone video of a dog.

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp reports:

How a 50-second video of a dog brought down Alex Murdaugh

How Alex Murdaugh’s trial became a circus

06:15 , Rachel Sharp

Murder. A botched hitman plot. Mystery deaths. Millions of dollars of stolen money. Opioid addiction.

The case involving Alex Murdaugh appears to have it all when it comes to drama and plot twists.

It’s then little surprise that his murder trial in Walterboro, South Carolina, captivated the public all across America in the weeks before the jury convicted him.

But it should then also come as little surprise that the high-profile case spilled out into a spectacle far beyond the testimony jurors heard in the courtroom.

During a dramatic six weeks in court, the trial was been rocked by a bomb threat, apparently obscene gestures and bad behaviour from the Murdaugh family members, a controversial GoFundMe account, a Covid-19 outbreak among jurors – and a dozen eggs.

How Alex Murdaugh’s murder trial became a circus

SLED vows to get ‘justice’ for ALL of Murdaugh’s victims

05:15 , Rachel Sharp

South Carolina officials have vowed to get “justice” for all of Alex Murdaugh’s other alleged victims after he was sentenced to life in prison for the brutal murders of his wife Maggie and son Paul.

SLED Chief Mark Keel gave a brief press conference outside Colleton County Courthouse in Walterboro, South Carolina, moments after Murdaugh was handed the highest possible sentence over the 7 June 2021 slayings.

“Today is not the end. It’s the next step in a long road to justice for every person who has been victimised by Alex Murdaugh,” he said.

“Alex Murdaugh has rightfully been found guilty of murdering his wife Maggie and son Paul. He was found guilty because he was guilty and as one of the witnesses said ‘Paul was a little detective’.”

Chief Keel issued a warning that anyone who has assisted Murdaugh in his crimes should now know “that justice will be sought”.

His comments about “a long road to justice” pointed to the slew of other crimes for which Murdaugh is awaiting trial as state prosecutors and investigators believe the murders are only a fraction of the disgraced legal scion’s sprawling crime wave.

Beyond the murders, he is charged with 99 counts on more than a dozen indictments in a vast multi-million-dollar fraud scheme going back at least a decade.

Through the schemes, he allegedly stole at least $8.7m from settlements from dozens of legal clients he represented through his law firm PMPED.

Key revelations from Alex Murdaugh's trial

04:15 , Rachel Sharp

Legal dynasty heir Alex Murdaugh has been found guilty of the brutal double murder of his wife and adult son after a six-week trial in South Carolina.

Maggie, 52, and Paul, 22, were both shot dead at the family’s sprawling 1,700-acre property in Islandton, South Carolina, on the night of 7 June 2021.

Murdaugh, 54, claimed that he returned home from visiting his elderly mother to find the victims’ bodies at the dog kennels on the land.

No arrests were made for more than a year, until – in July 2022 – Murdaugh was charged with their murders. Nearly eight months later, Murdaugh was convicted on 2 March.

After six weeks of dramatic testimony at the Colleton County Courthouse in Walterboro, the jury took less than three hours to return a guilty verdict. Murdaugh was then sentenced to life in prison.

Here are the key revelations from the trial:

Key revelations from the bombshell Alex Murdaugh murder trial

Why was Alex Murdaugh convicted of murder? Here’s what defence and prosecution argued over six weeks of trial

03:15 , Rachel Sharp

During the six weeks of Alex Murdaugh’s double murder trial, jurors heard hours upon hours of gruesome testimony about how his wife Maggie and son Paul were gunned down at the dog kennels of the family’s sprawling 1,700-acre Moselle estate.

Two different guns were used in the 7 June 2021 attack – neither of which have ever been found.

Paul was ambushed by his attacker as he stood in the feed room of the kennels, being shot twice with a 12-gauge shotgun.

The first shot struck his chest, while a second fatal shot tore through his shoulder, neck and head, blowing his entire brain out of his skull.

Just yards away from Paul, Maggie was shot five times with a .300 Blackout semiautomatic rifle, as she tried to flee her killer.

On 2 March, Murdaugh was found guilty of the murders after jurors deliberated for less than three hours.

Here’s how the prosecution and the defence argued the case:

Alex Murdaugh: What the defence and prosecution argued over six weeks of trial

VOICES: Alex Murdaugh’s trial proves cameras don’t belong in the courtroom

02:15 , Rachel Sharp

“It’s hard to look back on the Murdaugh trial and not think of experts who have warned about the dangers of inviting television cameras into the courtroom. “Although defendants have a right to a public trial, the courts have yet to rule that they have a right to a televised trial,” Ruth Ann Strickland, a former professor of Government and Justice Studies at Appalachian State University, wrote in 2009 for the Middle Tennessee State University’s First Amendment Encyclopedia.

“Federal judges, she noted, ‘have generally rejected television and camera coverage of court proceedings, arguing that live television broadcasts, in particular, distract trial participants, prejudice trial outcomes, and thus deprive defendants of fair trials.’”

The Independent’s Clémence Michallon writes:

Alex Murdaugh’s trial proves cameras don’t belong in the courtroom

WATCH: The moment disgraced attorney Alex Murdaugh is sentenced to life in jail

01:15 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh’s verdict could have been very different – if it wasn’t for a juror with a dozen eggs

00:15 , Rachel Sharp

The verdict in Alex Murdaugh’s high-profile double murder trial could have turned out to be very different – if it hadn’t been for the actions of a juror with a dozen eggs.

The once-powerful legal dynasty heir was convicted on Thursday of shooting dead his wife Maggie and son Paul in a heinous crime at the family’s 1,700-acre Moselle estate in Islandton, South Carolina, back on 7 June 2021.

The panel of 12 jurors deliberated for less than three hours before they unanimously found him guilty of all charges – two counts of murder and two weapons charges.

But the removal of a juror just hours before the deliberations got underway could have changed the course of the convicted killer’s fate, according to an insider.

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp has the full story:

How did a juror with some eggs impact the Alex Murdaugh verdict so drastically?

Who was Maggie Murdaugh?

Tuesday 7 March 2023 23:45 , Rachel Sharp

Maggie was Alex Murdaugh’s wife and the mother of their two sons Buster and Paul.

The 52-year-old met her husband when they were both students at the University of South Carolina.

She was shot five times with an AR-15-style rifle on the night of 7 June 2021.

According to testimony from the Murdaugh housekeeper Blanca Simpson, Maggie was concerned with the family’s finances – and feared her husband was not being truthful with her about the extent of their situation.

Ms Simpson testified that Maggie had got upset and confided in her a few months before the murders, saying that the family was being sued for $30m in the boat crash lawsuit.

Alex and Maggie Murdaugh pictured together

Maggie told her that she felt “Alex was not being truthful to her about the lawsuit... she said ‘he doesn’t tell me everything’,” testified Ms Simpson.

Maggie’s sister Marian Proctor testified that Murdaugh had an affair about 15 years ago – and Maggie found out about it.

While it was years ago and the couple worked through it, she said it “bothered” Maggie and she had brought it up again around the time of the murders.

She also revealed that the family knew about Murdaugh’s opioid abuse.

Alex Murdaugh’s attorney makes bizarre – chicken-related – Twitter return

Tuesday 7 March 2023 23:15 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh’s attorney has made a bizarre – and chicken-related – return to Twitter after he received a dressing down from the judge for his social media posts during the high-profile murder trial.

On Saturday, defence attorney Jim Griffin tweeted a photo of himself with his face in a wooden cut-out photo prop of a cowboy riding a chicken.

“Walterboro, you were a gracious host. Happy Trails,” he wrote.

The bizarre post marked his first since 18 February, when a tweet landed him in hot water with Judge Clifton Newman.

Read more here:

Alex Murdaugh’s attorney makes bizarre chicken-related Twitter return after trial

Buster Murdaugh files police complaint about media

Tuesday 7 March 2023 22:45 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh’s only surviving son Buster has filed a police report claiming that he is being harassed by members of the media.

In the police report, filed with Beaufort County Sheriff’s office on Sunday, Buster complained about photos of him and his girlfriend Brooklynne White inside his Hilton Head home which appeared in the New York Post.

He said that the couple had reviewed ring camera video and noticed a suspicious grey Dodge Challenger outside the home on Saturday evening.

They believe the occupant took the photos.

Sometime later, Ms White told police the vehicle was following her.

Officers pulled over the vehicle for speeding and making an improper lane change and found the driver had camera equipment in the car.

They received a warning about a traffic violation.

Police said they would also increase patrols around Buster’s home.

Alex Murdaugh’s brother Randy reveals what he really thinks happened night of murders

Tuesday 7 March 2023 22:15 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh’s brother Randy has broken his silence to reveal what he really thinks happened on the night that the disgraced attorney’s wife Maggie and son Paul were gunned down in a brutal crime that shocked South Carolina’s Lowcountry and captured the nation’s attention for the better part of two years.

Randy became the first family member of the disgraced attorney to speak out after the high-profile trial, where Murdaugh was convicted of all charges and sentenced to life in prison.

The 56-year-old admitted that he believes his sibling “is not telling the truth” about the 7 June 2021 killings.

“He knows more than what he’s saying,” Randy told The New York Times.

“He’s not telling the truth, in my opinion, about everything there.”

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp reports:

Alex Murdaugh’s brother Randy reveals what he really thinks happened night of murders

What we know about Buster Murdaugh:

Tuesday 7 March 2023 21:45 , Rachel Sharp

Buster Murdaugh is the eldest – and now only surviving – son of Maggie and Alex Murdaugh.

The 26-year-old stood by his father throughout the growing number of allegations against him – even after his arrest for the murders of his brother and mother.

Buster was also accused of buying alcohol for Paul before the 2019 fatal boat crash.

His name has also cropped up in connection with the mysterious death of Stephen Smith – a 19-year-old who was found dead at the side of a road in Hampton County in 2015.

Buster Murdaugh with his girlfriend during his father’s double murder trial

Buster supported his father in court every day of the murder trial but his apparently bad behaviour cropped up in the courtroom.

In court on the week of 6 February, Buster appeared to “flip the bird” at attorney Mark Tinsley as he took the witness stand about the boat crash lawsuit that he brought against Mr Murdaugh.

Judge Clifton Newman reportedly issued multiple warnings to several members of the Murdaugh family about their behaviour in court and they were moved to the back of the courtroom.

Sources told FITS News that when Buster was asked to move to the back of the courtroom, he allegedly kicked over a water bottle in anger.

The judge warned that he and other family members could be removed from court altogether.

Buster later took the stand in his father’s defence - but showed no emotion when the guilty verdict came down.

Why did Alex Murdaugh kill his wife and son?

Tuesday 7 March 2023 21:15 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh will now spend the rest of his years behind bars after being sentenced to life in prison for the heinous double murder of his wife Maggie and son Paul.

The disgraced attorney was handed two sentences of life without parole on Friday in a case that has rocked the community in Hampton County, South Carolina, and captivated America for the best part of two years.

Jurors took less than three hours to reach their unanimous verdict, deciding that – beyond any reasonable doubt – Murdaugh killed his wife and son that fateful night.

On 7 June 2021, Maggie and Paul were brutally gunned down by the dog kennels on the powerful family’s vast 1,700-acre Moselle estate.

Murdaugh shot his son, 22, twice with a 12-gauge shotgun while he stood in the feed room of the dog kennels – the second shot to his head blowing his brain almost entirely out of his skull.

After killing Paul, prosecutors said Murdaugh then grabbed a .300 Blackout semiautomatic rifle and opened fire on Maggie as she tried to flee. She was shot five times including twice in the head after she had fallen to her knees.

But why did he do it? Why did he slaughter his wife and son? What was his motive?

Why did Alex Murdaugh kill his wife and son? Here’s the motive from prosecutors

Who was Paul Murdaugh?

Tuesday 7 March 2023 20:45 , Rachel Sharp

Paul Murdaugh, 22, was the younger son of Alex and Maggie Murdaugh who, at the time of his death, was facing trial over the death of Mallory Beach, 19.

On the night of 24 February 2019, Paul was allegedly drunk driving the Murdaugh family’s boat with several of his friends on board.

The boat crashed into some rocks and threw the passengers overboard.

Beach’s body washed up on shore around a week later.

Paul Murdaugh pictured in mugshot for the boat crash

In April 2019, Paul was charged with three felonies over Beach’s death including boating under the influence and was facing up to 25 years in prison.

Paul was shot twice with a shotgun – once in the chest and once in the shoulder.

Investigators in the boat crash case had no choice but to drop the charges when he died. Beach’s family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the Murdaughs – which was finally settled in January 2023.

Maggie Murdaugh was seeking a divorce, nail technician claims

Tuesday 7 March 2023 20:30 , Megan Sheets

Maggie Murdaugh’s nail technician has spoken out to reveal she was seeking a divorce from Alex before the murders.

The technician told CourtTV when she first heard Maggie had been killed she immediately suspected Alex, because Maggie had told her of plans to get a divorce.

She said that she spoke to investigators about that topic before the trial.

However, she said she believes prosecutors didn’t call her to testify at trial because there was no way to prove what she claims Maggie told her.

Watch the interview:

Murders, million-dollar fraud and mystery deaths: The story of Alex Murdaugh’s spectacular fall from grace

Tuesday 7 March 2023 20:15 , Rachel Sharp

Powerful South Carolina legal scion Alex Murdaugh became the centre of the state’s “trial of the century” over the brutal double murder of his wife and son.

But this is far from the only twist in a bizarre and sprawling tale of unexplained deaths, hitman plots and multi-million-dollar fraud schemes.

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp delves into the saga:

The story of Alex Murdaugh’s spectacular fall from grace

Murdaugh avoided death sentence because of ‘racial and class privilege,’ observers say

Tuesday 7 March 2023 19:56 , Megan Sheets

Observers have argued that Alex Murdaugh was able to avoid the death penalty because of his wealth, race, and family background, coming from a line of lawyers and prosecutors who presided in Hampton County for generations.

“It is hard to ignore the fact that that the decision provided yet another example of racial and class privilege in the death penalty system,” Austin Sarat, a death penalty expert and jurisprudence professor at Amherst College, wrote in USA Today.

Describing death row, Professor Sarat noted, “Throughout U.S. history, it has been a place heavily populated by poor Black men.”

In South Carolina, a state with a population that’s two-thirds white, half of the 35 people on death row are Black.

During Murdaugh’s sentencing, Judge Clifton Newman pointed to similar ironies.

The Independent’s Josh Marcus has more:

Alex Murdaugh avoided death sentence because of ‘racial privilege,’ observers say

Jurors prayed before finding Murdaugh guilty

Tuesday 7 March 2023 19:45 , Rachel Sharp

A juror in Alex Murdaugh’s murder trial has revealed more about what went down in the jury room in Alex Murdaugh’s murder trial.

James, who did not want to reveal his last name, told Law & Crime that the panel prayed before reaching their unanimous guilty verdict.

At 22, James is the same age that Paul was when he was gunned down by his father at the family’s property.

He said that he is confident in the outcome of the case.

“We all, I think, were very good at looking at all of the evidence and not jumping to conclusions but rather taking all of the evidence and seeing where it led us,” he said.

“We did have a few that were not on the same page, so we did like an anonymous vote, in the beginning, to see where everybody was at and make sure everybody was on the same page.

“Once we found that out, we kind of just opened the floor for anybody, whoever had questions, and then we would talk through those. We had the evidence in the other room.”

Three bodies, 1,700 acres and a whole lot of hogs: Inside Alex Murdaugh’s $4m Moselle estate

Tuesday 7 March 2023 19:15 , Rachel Sharp

Before returning a guilty verduct, jurors toured the Murdaugh family’s Moselle estate, seeing for themselves where Alex Murdaugh gunned down his wife Maggie and son Paul back on 7 June 2021.

But that’s not all jurors saw.

They also saw a place where another mysterious death took place just three years before the 2021 murders.

They saw a snapshot of the powerful and affluent Murdaugh family’s life given the $4m property was the place they called home for several years.

And they might have even seen some of the estate’s wild hogs – whose existence has been an unusually common mention throughout the disgraced attorney’s murder trial.

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp reports:

Three bodies, 1,700 acres and a whole lot of hogs: Alex Murdaugh’s $4m Moselle estate

What prison is Alex Murdaugh going to?

Tuesday 7 March 2023 18:45 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh was handed two consecutive life terms at his sentencing on 3 March, hours after the guilty verdict came down. The sentence will be served at one of the state’s seven maximum security prisons, which only house violent criminals.

Upon leaving the court, he was to be handed over to the custody of the South Carolina Department of Corrections (SCDOC) and taken to the Kirkland Correctional Institution in Columbia.

All male inmates are originally taken to this facility after sentencing, which is one of the state’s maximum security prisons.

Once there, he is expected to have a two-month evaluation including mental and physical health checks.

This evaluation – together with the inmate classification system – will be used to determine which of South Carolina’s highest-security prisons Murdaugh will be sent to spend the duration of his sentence.

The evaluation process takes about 45 days, the SCDOC said in a statement following Murdaugh’s sentencing.

VOICES: Will Alex Murdaugh remember what brought him down?

Tuesday 7 March 2023 18:15 , Rachel Sharp

“Alex Murdaugh is now slated to spend the rest of his life in prison for the murders of his wife Maggie and son Paul. The astonishing murder trial delivered its final twist on Thursday evening when the jury returned its guilty verdict after less than three hours — a tiny fraction of the time they listened to unspeakably gruesome testimony about the killings.

“While some of the 12 jurors may elect to reveal their identities and speak to the media in the coming days, as one already has, we’ll likely never have a full picture of what happened in the deliberation room. But having followed the courtroom circus in the most minute detail from our New York newsroom, there’s little doubt in my mind that the verdict hinged on one out of 75 witnesses: Murdaugh himself.”

The Independent’s Megan Sheets writes:

Will Alex Murdaugh remember what brought him down?

Prosecutor Creighton Waters delights new Twitter followers

Tuesday 7 March 2023 17:45 , Rachel Sharp

Lead prosecutor Creighton Waters has become an overnight social media sensation after he secured a conviction in Alex Murdaugh’s murder trial.

Mr Waters led the state to victory last week when Murdaugh was found guilty of all charges over his wife and son’s killings.

After the jury reached its verdict, he launched a Twitter account for the first time – and has been delighting his new following ever since.

In his latest tweet on Tuesday, Murdaugh shared a clip of his fish tank, writing: “Have a saltwater tank going without stop since 1993.  The clownfish - was named for Jadaveon back in 2010.  He is 12 yo.   Wrasse is Zoko and Damsel is Sokka.”

Alex Murdaugh associate Russell Laffitte is denied new trial over financial fraud charges

Tuesday 7 March 2023 17:15 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh’s associate Russell Laffitte has been denied a new trial on charges that he helped the convicted killer and financial fraudster steal millions from his law firm clients.

US District Judge Richard Gergel denied Laffitte’s request for a new trial on Monday – four days after Murdaugh was found guilty of killing his wife Maggie and son Paul in a brutal double murder which prosecutors said was motivated by the disgraced attorney’s efforts to cover up his string of financial crimes.

Laffitte, the former CEO of Palmetto State Bank, was convicted in November of financial fraud charges in connection to Murdaugh’s alleged white collar fraud schemes.

His conviction came on the basis that he was Murdaugh’s co-defendant in his sprawling multi-million-dollar – and decade-long – schemes.

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp reports:

Alex Murdaugh friend Russel Laffitte is denied new trial on financial fraud charges

Murdaugh murder trial viewers captivated by ‘man in the yellow suit’

Tuesday 7 March 2023 16:45 , Rachel Sharp

Throughout the six-week trial, viewers of Alex Murdaugh’s double murder trial were often captivated by the so-called “man in the yellow suit”.

Chatter on social media repeatedly turned to Dr Wendell Butterfield, an 80-year-old man tasked with the security of Judge Clifton Newman who often sported eccentric, colourful outfits as he sat in the courtroom in Colleton County Courthouse.

Mandy Matney, a local journalist and podcast host who has followed the Murdaugh case for years, pointed out Dr Butterfield’s dashing yellow suit back on 2 March.

“CHECK OUT THAT YELLOW SUIT,” she tweeted.

Several other social media users commented on the outfit with one saying it “brought the sunshine today” as Murdaugh’s guilty verdict came hours later.

Dr Butterfield told The Daily Beast he was surprised to learn his outfit choices had made him the talk of the trial.

“I had no idea that my suit choices were making quite a stir,” he said. “It’s been surreal.”

Who were the key players in Alex Murdaugh murder trial?

Tuesday 7 March 2023 16:15 , Rachel Sharp

Disgraced legal scion Alex Murdaugh has been convicted of the grisly double murder of his wife Maggie and son Paul, who were found shot dead at the family’s sprawling estate in Islandton, South Carolina, on 7 June 2021.

The husband and father – who comes from a long line of prominent attorneys in South Carolina – was accused of shooting Paul twice with a shotgun and Maggie five times with an AR-15-style rifle.

Prosecutors claimed that he was motivated by desperation to distract from his string of alleged financial crimes which were on the brink of being exposed.

For years, the Murdaughs reigned over the local justice system and mingled in powerful circles.

Now, the brutal double murders have brought to light a series of scandals surrounding Murdaugh including unexplained deaths, a multi-million-dollar fraud scheme and a botched hitman plot – in a sprawling saga that touches many across the lowcountry.

Here’s some of the key players in the case:

Who were the key players in Alex Murdaugh murder trial?

WATCH: Craziest courthouse moments from the Alex Murdaugh trial

Tuesday 7 March 2023 15:45 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh jurors weren’t fooled by him turning tears ‘on and off’ on the stand

Tuesday 7 March 2023 15:15 , Rachel Sharp

Jurors in Alex Murdaugh’s murder trial have revealed that they weren’t fooled by his ability to turn the tears “on and off” on the witness stand.

James McDowell, Gwen Generette and Amie Williams broke their silence about what went down in the jury room at the disgraced attorney’s trial where the panel returned a unanimous guilty verdict in the double murder of his wife Maggie and son Paul.

Rather than convince the jury of his innocence, the three jurors told NBC’s TODAY show on Monday that the killer’s decision to testify in his own defence was one of the key things that actually helped to prove his guilt.

The panel saw right through his manufactured tears when he broke down and sobbed on the stand speaking about his wife and son, said Ms Generette – with the trio all agreeing it was a mistake for Murdaugh to testify.

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp has the story:

Alex Murdaugh jurors reveal they weren’t fooled by ‘on and off’ tears on the stand

Murdaugh’s conviction shines spotlight on Gloria Satterfield’s death

Tuesday 7 March 2023 14:45 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh’s conviction for the murders of his wife and son has shone a spotlight on the 2018 death of Gloria Satterfield, the family’s housekeeper of two decades who died in a mysterious trip and fall at the Moselle estate.

Satterfield worked for the influential Murdaugh family for more than 20 years when she was found at the bottom of the steps leading up to the family’s home. She died weeks later from her injuries.

At the time, her death was regarded as an accidental fall – though her death certificate cited her manner of death as “natural” and no autopsy was performed.

Gloria Satterfield died in a ‘trip and fall’ at the Murdaugh home in 2018

After her death, Murdaugh reached an agreement to pay her family $4m in a wrongful death settlement – but then allegedly stole the money as part of his fraud scheme.

On 15 September 2021, days after Murdaugh’s crime schemes were exposed, SLED announced it was reopening an investigation into Satterfield’s death.

In early 2022, officials announced plans to exhume her body.

It is not clear what evidence may have led investigators to do so – or where the investigation may be headed.

How Alex Murdaugh’s son helped seal his guilty verdict from beyond the grave with a 50-second video of a dog

Tuesday 7 March 2023 14:15 , Rachel Sharp

Since birth, he enjoyed the privileges that came from being the heir to a local legal dynasty.

For a decade he got away with stealing millions of dollars from his law firm, legal clients and friends.

And for 13 months he evaded justice after murdering his wife and adult son in a brutal fashion on the family’s estate.

But, in the end, Alex Murdaugh’s crimes caught up with him.

And it was his own son who unknowingly helped cement his downfall from beyond the grave with a damning 50-second cellphone video of a dog.

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp reports:

How a 50-second video of a dog brought down Alex Murdaugh

Mother of Stephen Smith calls for justice after murder conviction

Tuesday 7 March 2023 13:45 , Rachel Sharp

The mother of a gay teenager who was found dead in mysterious circumstances in 2015 is calling for justice for his death after Alex Murdaugh was convicted of murdering his wife and son.

Stephen Smith, 19, was found dead in the middle of a road in Hampton County back in 2015. He had suffered blunt force trauma to the head and his car was left down the road.

His death was officially ruled a hit-and-run but the victim’s family – and investigators who worked on the initial case – have long doubted this version of events.

There have long been murmurings in the community that a “Murdaugh boy” may have been involved and the Murdaugh name came up 40 times in documents in the initial case, reported Live5News.

Just days after the murders of Maggie and Paul, SLED announced that the investigation into their murders had led them to reopen an investigation into Smith’s death.

Now that Murdaugh has been convicted of killing his wife and son, Smith’s mother Sandy is hoping she will finally get answers in her son’s death.

“This circus is over and now it’s time to bring justice for other people,” Sandy Smith told The New York Post Sunday.

It is not clear what information came to light during the investigation into Maggie and Paul’s murders and then prompted SLED to launch an investigation into Smith’s death

In January 2023, SLED said it had “made progress” in the case but no other details have been released.

Will Alex Murdaugh appeal his murder conviction?

Tuesday 7 March 2023 13:16 , Rachel Sharp

Disgraced legal dynasty heir and convicted family killer Alex Murdaugh is already planning to appeal his verdict after a jury of 12 found him guilty of the murders of his wife and son.

Defence attorneys Jim Griffin and Dick Harpootlian held a feisty press conference outside Colleton County Courthouse in Walterboro, South Carolina, on Friday where they vowed to fight the murder conviction which has landed Murdaugh behind bars for life.

Mr Harpootlian said that they will be filing appeal documents within 10 days and vowed that they would appeal his conviction all the way up to the US Supreme Court.

Despite the verdict, Mr Harpootlian insisted Murdaugh is innocent and said that they had no regrets about putting him on the witness stand in his own defence.

Murdaugh had “no choice” but to testify in his murder trial because he had been “made out to be a monster who stole from children, crippled people” and others, he said.

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp has the full story:

Alex Murdaugh to appeal guilty verdict as defence gripes about case after sentencing

Alex Murdaugh’s verdict could have been very different – if it wasn’t for a juror with a dozen eggs

Tuesday 7 March 2023 12:45 , Rachel Sharp

The verdict in Alex Murdaugh’s high-profile double murder trial could have turned out to be very different – if it hadn’t been for the actions of a juror with a dozen eggs.

The once-powerful legal dynasty heir was convicted on Thursday of shooting dead his wife Maggie and son Paul in a heinous crime at the family’s 1,700-acre Moselle estate in Islandton, South Carolina, back on 7 June 2021.

The panel of 12 jurors deliberated for less than three hours before they unanimously found him guilty of all charges – two counts of murder and two weapons charges.

Rachel Sharp reports:

How did a juror with some eggs impact the Alex Murdaugh verdict so drastically?

SNL cold open muddles Rupert Murdoch and Alex Murdaugh

Tuesday 7 March 2023 12:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Saturday Night Live’s cold open poked fun at the legal troubles of two powerful figures this week – by hilariously muddling Rupert Murdoch and Fox News’ defamation lawsuit with Alex Murdaugh and his double murder trial.

The comedy sketch show featured a Fox & Friends spoof with cast members Mikey Day as Steve Doocy, Heidi Gardner as Ainsley Earhardt and Bowen Yang as Brian Kilmeade.

SNL cold open muddles Rupert Murdoch and Alex Murdaugh

Alex Murdaugh’s brother Randy reveals what he really thinks happened night of murders

Tuesday 7 March 2023 11:39 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh’s brother Randy has broken his silence to reveal what he really thinks happened on the night that the disgraced attorney’s wife Maggie and son Paul were gunned down in a brutal crime that shocked South Carolina’s lowcountry and captured the nation’s attention for the best part of two years.

Randy became the first family member of the disgraced attorney to speak out after the high-profile trial, admitting that he believes his sibling “is not telling the truth” about the 7 June 2021 killings.

“He knows more than what he’s saying,” Randy told The New York Times.

“He’s not telling the truth, in my opinion, about everything there.”

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp has the full story:

Alex Murdaugh’s brother Randy reveals what he really thinks happened night of murders

ICYMI: Why did Alex Murdaugh kill his wife and son? Here’s the motive presented by prosecutors

Tuesday 7 March 2023 11:15 , Namita Singh

Alex Murdaugh will now spend the rest of his years behind bars after being sentenced to life in prison for the heinous double murder of his wife Maggie and son Paul.

The disgraced attorney was handed two sentences of life without parole on Friday in a case that has rocked the community in Hampton County, South Carolina, and captivated America for the best part of two years.

Jurors took less than three hours to reach their unanimous verdict, deciding that – beyond any reasonable doubt – Murdaugh killed his wife and son that fateful night.

But why did he do it? More in this report:

Why did Alex Murdaugh kill his wife and son? Here’s the motive from prosecutors

Key revelations from the Alex Murdaugh trial

Tuesday 7 March 2023 10:45 , Oliver O'Connell

It’s a dramatic saga that now includes murder, a botched hitman plot, multi-million-dollar fraud schemes and a series of unexplained deaths.

The now-disbarred attorney denied the allegations and pleaded not guilty.

After six weeks of dramatic testimony at the Colleton County Courthouse in Walterboro, the jury took less than three hours to return a guilty verdict. Murdaugh was then sentenced to life in prison.

Here are the key revelations from the trial:

Key revelations from the bombshell Alex Murdaugh murder trial

Three bodies, 1,700 acres and a whole lot of hogs: Inside Alex Murdaugh’s $4m Moselle estate

Tuesday 7 March 2023 10:15 , Namita Singh

The Moselle estate had a mysterious past even before Maggie and Paul’s murders with ties to a suspected drug smuggler and a housekeeper’s fatal fall, reports Rachel Sharp:

Three bodies, 1,700 acres and a whole lot of hogs: Alex Murdaugh’s $4m Moselle estate

Buster Murdaugh calls the police on photographers following him days after father jailed

Tuesday 7 March 2023 09:45 , Namita Singh

Alex Murdaugh’s only surviving son filed a police complaint over the weekend about being harassed by national media reporters.

Murdaugh was convicted last week for murdering his wife Margaret and youngest son Paul.

In the report filed before Beaufort County Sheriff’s office on Sunday, Buster Murdaugh informed them about pictures published in the New York Post showing him and his girlfriend inside his Hilton Head home.

More in this report:

Buster Murdaugh calls police on photographers following him days after father jailed

SNL cold open muddles Rupert Murdoch’s Fox defamation case and Alex Murdaugh’s murder trial

Tuesday 7 March 2023 09:15 , Namita Singh

Saturday Night Live’s cold open poked fun at the legal troubles of two powerful figures this week – by hilariously muddling Rupert Murdoch and Fox News’ defamation lawsuit with Alex Murdaugh and his double murder trial.

Report:

SNL cold open muddles Rupert Murdoch and Alex Murdaugh

Murdaugh attorney makes bizarre – chicken-related – Twitter return

Tuesday 7 March 2023 08:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Alex Murdaugh’s attorney has made a bizarre – and chicken-related – return to Twitter after he received a dressing down from the judge for his social media posts during the high-profile murder trial.

On Saturday, defence attorney Jim Griffin tweeted a photo of himself with his face in a wooden cut-out photo prop of a cowboy riding a chicken.

“Walterboro, you were a gracious host. Happy Trails,” he wrote.

Alex Murdaugh’s attorney makes bizarre chicken-related Twitter return after trial

What’s next for Alex Murdaugh after guilty trial verdict and life prison sentence?

Tuesday 7 March 2023 08:15 , Namita Singh

Disgraced legal scion Alex Murdaugh will spend the rest of his life in prison after being found guilty of the brutal murders of his wife Maggie and son Paul.

The once-powerful attorney was convicted of two counts of murder and two weapons charges after a dramatic six-week “trial of the century” inside the Colleton County Courthouse in Walterboro, South Carolina.

Jurors took less than three hours to reach the verdict after hearing how he had gunned down his wife Maggie and son Paul on the family’s sprawling 1,700-acre Moselle estate in Islandton, South Carolina, back on 7 June 2021. He continued to claim his innocence as he received two consecutive life sentences on 3 March.

More in this report:

What’s next for Alex Murdaugh?

Murdaugh testimony only confirmed his guilt, jurors say

Tuesday 7 March 2023 07:45 , Namita Singh

Alex Murdaugh didn’t help his defense when he took the stand at his trial for the murder of his wife and son, three jurors said on Monday.

Murdaugh’s testimony only managed to cement what they were already thinking — that he easily lied and could turn on and off his tears at will, the jurors said on the NBC Today show.

The key piece of evidence in finding the lawyer guilty, they said, was a video on his son’s cellphone that was shot minutes before the killings at the same kennels near where the bodies were found at their sprawling estate in rural South Carolina.

Alex Murdaugh is led to the Colleton County Courthouse by sheriff's deputies for sentencing in in Walterboro, Friday, 3 March 2023 (AP)
Alex Murdaugh is led to the Colleton County Courthouse by sheriff's deputies for sentencing in in Walterboro, Friday, 3 March 2023 (AP)

Murdaugh’s voice can be heard on the video even though he insisted for 20 months that he hadn’t been at the kennels that night. Investigators didn’t see the video for more than a year before advances in hacking enabled them to unlock Paul Murdaugh’s iPhone. They shared it with the defense ahead of the trial.

When he took the stand, the first thing Murdaugh did was admit he had lied to investigators about being at the kennels, saying he was paranoid of law enforcement because he was addicted to opioids and had pills in his pocket the night of the killings.“The kennel video, that just kind of sealed the deal,” juror Gwen Generette said.

The jury deliberated for less than three hours Thursday before finding Murdaugh guilty of killing his 22-year-old son, Paul, with two shotgun blasts and his 52-year-old wife, Maggie, with four or five rifle shots.

Why did Alex Murdaugh kill his wife and son?

Tuesday 7 March 2023 06:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Here’s how the prosecution laid out the potential motive for the murders of Paul and Maggie Murdaugh.

Why did Alex Murdaugh kill his wife and son? Here’s the motive from prosecutors

Buster Murdaugh calls police after being harassed by media

Tuesday 7 March 2023 06:14 , Namita Singh

Buster Murdaugh, the only surviving son of murderer Alex Murdaugh, has filed a police complaint over the weekend about being harassed by national media reporters.

Alex Murdaugh was convicted last week for murdering his wife Margaret and youngest son Paul.

In the report filed before Beaufort County Sheriff’s office on Sunday, Mr Murdaugh informed them about pictures published in the New York Post showing him and his girlfriend inside his Hilton Head home.

He told the police that they reviewed Ring camera video and “observed a suspicious grey Dodge Challenger” lingering outside their house at 6.39pm on 4 March.

Buster Murdaugh, the son of Alex Murdaugh, listens as Alex Murdaugh's verdict is read at the Colleton County Courthouse in Walterboro, Thursday, 2 March 2023 (AP)
Buster Murdaugh, the son of Alex Murdaugh, listens as Alex Murdaugh's verdict is read at the Colleton County Courthouse in Walterboro, Thursday, 2 March 2023 (AP)

“Buster said he and his girlfriend [Brooklynn White] reviewed Ring camera video from the residence and observed a suspicious grey Dodge Challenger outside the residence on Saturday evening,” reported the Daily Beast citing police report.

“Buster believes the occupant of this vehicle took the photo, judging by Buster’s position in the residence when the photo was captured. No other identifiable vehicle or suspect information was noted.”

According to the report, police will deploy extra patrol cars around his resident, further advicing him to contact the sheriff’s office “if he or his girlfriend note anything suspicious outside.”

Soon after, Mr Murdaugh’s girlfriend contacted the authorities, informing them about “being followed by the media” in a grey Chevrolet SUV.The suspicious car was followed by the police for “speeding and making improper lane change”.

The driver, with camera bag in passenger seat was released after being warned about the traffic violation.

Murdaugh jurors reveal why they weren’t fooled by his ability to turn the tears ‘on and off’

Tuesday 7 March 2023 04:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Jurors in Alex Murdaugh’s murder trial have revealed that they weren’t fooled by his ability to turn the tears “on and off” on the witness stand.

James McDowell, Gwen Generette and Amie Williams broke their silence about what went down in the jury room at the disgraced attorney’s trial where the panel returned a unanimous guilty verdict in the double murder of his wife Maggie and son Paul.

Rachel Sharp reports.

Alex Murdaugh jurors reveal they weren’t fooled by ‘on and off’ tears on the stand

How Alex Murdaugh’s son helped seal his guilty verdict from beyond the grave

Tuesday 7 March 2023 03:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Since birth, he enjoyed the privileges that came from being the heir to a local legal dynasty.

For a decade he got away with stealing millions of dollars from his law firm, legal clients and friends.

And for 13 months he evaded justice after murdering his wife and adult son in a brutal fashion on the family’s estate.

But, in the end, Alex Murdaugh’s crimes caught up with him.

And it was his own son who unknowingly helped cement his downfall from beyond the grave with a damning 50-second cellphone video of a dog.

How a 50-second video of a dog brought down Alex Murdaugh

What’s next for Alex Murdaugh?

Tuesday 7 March 2023 02:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Disgraced legal scion Alex Murdaugh will spend the rest of his life in prison after being found guilty of the brutal murders of his wife Maggie and son Paul.

The once-powerful attorney was convicted of two counts of murder and two weapons charges after a dramatic six-week “trial of the century” inside the Colleton County Courthouse in Walterboro, South Carolina.

Jurors took less than three hours to reach the verdict after hearing how he had gunned down his wife Maggie and son Paul on the family’s sprawling 1,700-acre Moselle estate in Islandton, South Carolina, back on 7 June 2021. He continued to claim his innocence as he received two consecutive life sentences on 3 March.

But this is far from the end of the scandals, criminal cases and unanswered questions surrounding Murdaugh.

Rachel Sharp explains.

What’s next for Alex Murdaugh?

Walterboro welcomes return to normality

Tuesday 7 March 2023 01:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Walterboro native Danny Murdaugh is ready for his small South Carolina town to return to normal following the double murder trial of a distant relative that drew global attention and sullied his family’s surname.

He lamented the “circus” brought to Walterboro by the six-week trial of Alex Murdaugh, which ended this week with the disgraced attorney sentenced to life in prison after being convicted of murdering his wife and son.

The spectacle altered life in Walterboro for over a month as an influx of locals, tourists and media flocked to the otherwise quiet downtown area to join the gripping trial.

After Murdaugh trial 'circus,' Walterboro welcomes normality

ICYMI: Murdaugh’s new mugshot released

Tuesday 7 March 2023 00:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Alex Murdaugh appears with a shaved head in a new mugshot released just hours after he was sentenced to spend the rest of his life in prison for murdering his son and wife.

The disgraced legal scion attorney was sentenced to two consecutive life terms on Friday in South Carolina’s Colleton County Court by Judge Clifton Newman.

Alex Murdaugh’s new mugshot released after life sentencing for murders of son, wife

Murdaugh’s attorneys say son Buster’s pleas wouldn’t have made difference to sentencing

Monday 6 March 2023 23:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Attorneys for convicted family killer Alex Murdaugh have explained why they decided against having his son plead for leniency during his sentencing.

Defence attorneys Jim Griffin and Dick Harpootlian held a feisty press conference outside Colleton County Courthouse in Walterboro, South Carolina, on Friday after their client was sentenced to two life sentences by Judge Clifton Newman. They vowed to fight the murder conviction but said that the sentencing was expected.

Buster’s pleas ‘wouldn’t have changed’ Alex Murdaugh sentence outcome, defence say

Watch: Murdaugh juror reveals how long it took to reach unanimous verdict

Monday 6 March 2023 22:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Alex Murdaugh juror reveals how long it took to reach unanimous guilty verdict

Murdaugh's fast conviction sealed by his testimony

Monday 6 March 2023 22:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Prosecutors produced no direct evidence linking South Carolina attorney Alex Murdaugh to the killings of his wife and son, yet a jury took less than three hours to convict him — thanks, in large part, to the defendant himself.

“It came down to just a couple of key pieces of evidence. And those were: the cellphone video ... that placed the defendant at the scene of the crime ... the defendant’s denial to law enforcement agents that he had been at the kennels with his wife and son that night, and then finally, his testimony on the stand,” said Jessica Roth, a Cardoza School of Law professor who followed the trial.

The quick verdict suggests that despite weeks of testimony, dozens of witnesses and hundreds of pieces of evidence, the jury ultimately didn’t see it as a complicated case, Roth added.

Murdaugh's fast conviction sealed by his testimony: experts

Murdaugh verdict could have been very different – if it wasn’t for a juror with a dozen eggs

Monday 6 March 2023 21:15 , Oliver O'Connell

The verdict in Alex Murdaugh’s high-profile double murder trial could have turned out to be very different – if it hadn’t been for the actions of a juror with a dozen eggs.

Rachel Sharp explains.

Did an Alex Murdaugh juror with a dozen eggs change the verdict?

SNL cold open muddles Rupert Murdoch and Alex Murdaugh

Monday 6 March 2023 20:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Saturday Night Live’s cold open poked fun at the legal troubles of two powerful figures this week – by hilariously muddling Rupert Murdoch and Fox News’ defamation lawsuit with Alex Murdaugh and his double murder trial.

The comedy sketch show featured a Fox & Friends spoof with cast members Mikey Day as Steve Doocy, Heidi Gardner as Ainsley Earhardt and Bowen Yang as Brian Kilmeade.

Bevan Hurley and Rachel Sharp report.

SNL cold open muddles Rupert Murdoch and Alex Murdaugh

Why did Alex Murdaugh kill his wife and son?

Monday 6 March 2023 20:15 , Oliver O'Connell

What was Alex Murdaugh’s motive for the murders?

Here’s what the prosecution argued:

Why did Alex Murdaugh kill his wife and son? Here’s the motive from prosecutors

Walterboro welcomes normality

Monday 6 March 2023 19:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Walterboro native Danny Murdaugh is ready for his small South Carolina town to return to normal following the double murder trial of a distant relative that drew global attention and sullied his family’s surname.

He lamented the “circus” brought to Walterboro by the six-week trial of Alex Murdaugh, which ended this week with the disgraced attorney sentenced to life in prison after being convicted of murdering his wife and son.

The spectacle altered life in Walterboro for over a month as an influx of locals, tourists and media flocked to the otherwise quiet downtown area to join the gripping trial.

After Murdaugh trial 'circus,' Walterboro welcomes normality

Why was Alex Murdaugh convicted of murder?

Monday 6 March 2023 19:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Here’s how the prosecution and the defence argued the case:

Is Alex Murdaugh guilty of murder? Here’s what the defence and prosecution argued

Key revelations from the Alex Murdaugh trial

Monday 6 March 2023 18:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Legal dynasty heir Alex Murdaugh has been found guilty of the brutal double murder of his wife and adult son after a six-week trial in South Carolina.

Maggie, 52, and Paul, 22, were both shot dead at the family’s sprawling 1,700-acre property in Islandton, South Carolina, on the night of 7 June 2021.

Murdaugh, 54, claimed that he returned home from visiting his elderly mother to find the victims’ bodies at the dog kennels on the land.

No arrests were made for more than a year, until – in July 2022 – Murdaugh was charged with their murders. Nearly eight months later, Murdaugh was convicted on 2 March.

Key revelations from the bombshell Alex Murdaugh murder trial

How Murdaugh’s son helped seal guilty verdict from beyond the grave

Monday 6 March 2023 18:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Since birth, he enjoyed the privileges that came from being the heir to a local legal dynasty.

For a decade he got away with stealing millions of dollars from his law firm, legal clients and friends.

And for 13 months he evaded justice after murdering his wife and adult son in a brutal fashion on the family’s estate.

But, in the end, Alex Murdaugh’s crimes caught up with him.

And it was his own son who unknowingly helped cement his downfall from beyond the grave with a damning 50-second cellphone video of a dog.

How a 50-second video of a dog brought down Alex Murdaugh

Murdaugh didn't help his defense by testifying

Monday 6 March 2023 17:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Alex Murdaugh didn’t help his defense when he took the stand at his trial for the murder of his wife and son, three jurors said on Monday.

Murdaugh’s testimony only managed to cement what they were already thinking — that he easily lied and could turn on and off his tears at will, the jurors said on the NBC Today show.

Jurors: Murdaugh didn't help his defense by testifying

What’s next for Alex Murdaugh?

Monday 6 March 2023 17:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Disgraced legal scion Alex Murdaugh will spend the rest of his life in prison after being found guilty of the brutal murders of his wife Maggie and son Paul.

The once-powerful attorney was convicted of two counts of murder and two weapons charges after a dramatic six-week “trial of the century” inside the Colleton County Courthouse in Walterboro, South Carolina.

Jurors took less than three hours to reach the verdict after hearing how he had gunned down his wife Maggie and son Paul on the family’s sprawling 1,700-acre Moselle estate in Islandton, South Carolina, back on 7 June 2021. He continued to claim his innocence as he received two consecutive life sentences on 3 March.

But this is far from the end of the scandals, criminal cases and unanswered questions surrounding Murdaugh.

Rachel Sharp explains.

What’s next for Alex Murdaugh?

John Oliver has a message for OJ Simpson about the Murdaugh trial

Monday 6 March 2023 16:45 , Oliver O'Connell

John Oliver had a message for OJ Simpson during the latest episode of Last Week Tonight.

The comedian ran through the biggest stories of the previous week, one of which was the verdict in the Alex Murdaugh trial and addressed a video posted by Simpson regarding the trial.

Jacob Stolworthy has the story.

John Oliver tells OJ Simpson ‘why people think he’s an expert’ on Alex Murdaugh trial

Watch: Murdaugh juror reveals how long it took to reach unanimous guilty verdict

Monday 6 March 2023 16:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Alex Murdaugh juror reveals how long it took to reach unanimous guilty verdict

Murdaugh’s attorneys say son Buster’s pleas wouldn’t have made difference in sentencing

Monday 6 March 2023 15:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Attorneys for convicted family killer Alex Murdaugh have explained why they decided against having his son plead for leniency during his sentencing.

Defence attorneys Jim Griffin and Dick Harpootlian held a feisty press conference outside Colleton County Courthouse in Walterboro, South Carolina, on Friday after their client was sentenced to two life sentences by Judge Clifton Newman. They vowed to fight the murder conviction but said that the sentencing was expected.

Andrea Blanco reports.

Buster’s pleas ‘wouldn’t have changed’ Alex Murdaugh sentence outcome, defence say

Murdaugh attorney makes bizarre – chicken-related – Twitter return

Monday 6 March 2023 15:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Alex Murdaugh’s attorney has made a bizarre – and chicken-related – return to Twitter after he received a dressing down from the judge for his social media posts during the high-profile murder trial.

On Saturday, defence attorney Jim Griffin tweeted a photo of himself with his face in a wooden cut-out photo prop of a cowboy riding a chicken.

“Walterboro, you were a gracious host. Happy Trails,” he wrote.

Rachel Sharp has the latest.

Alex Murdaugh’s attorney makes bizarre chicken-related Twitter return

Watch: Three jurors open up about deliberations

Monday 6 March 2023 14:45 , Oliver O'Connell

What’s next for Alex Murdaugh?

Monday 6 March 2023 14:15 , Oliver O'Connell

This is far from the end of the scandals, criminal cases and unanswered questions surrounding Murdaugh.

Whatever the verdict had been in the murder case, Murdaugh was never walking out of court a free man, as he is being held on bond on more than 100 charges in cases including a multi-million-dollar fraud scheme and a botched hitman plot.

Here’s what’s next for the disgraced attorney:

What’s next for Alex Murdaugh?

Second juror says the panel prayed before finding Murdaugh guilty

Monday 6 March 2023 14:00 , Rachel Sharp

A second juror has now spoken out about what went down in the jury room in Alex Murdaugh’s murder trial.

James, who did not want to reveal his last name, told Law & Crime that the panel prayed before reaching their unanimous guilty verdict.

At 22, James is the same age that Paul was when he was gunned down by his father at the family’s property.

He said that he is confident in the outcome of the case.

“We all, I think, were very good at looking at all of the evidence and not jumping to conclusions but rather taking all of the evidence and seeing where it led us,” he said.

“We did have a few that were not on the same page, so we did like an anonymous vote, in the beginning, to see where everybody was at and make sure everybody was on the same page.

“Once we found that out, we kind of just opened the floor for anybody, whoever had questions, and then we would talk through those. We had the evidence in the other room.”

How Alex Murdaugh’s son helped seal his guilty verdict from beyond the grave

Monday 6 March 2023 13:30 , Oliver O'Connell

For a decade he got away with stealing millions of dollars from his law firm, legal clients and friends.

And for 13 months he evaded justice after murdering his wife and adult son in a brutal fashion on the family’s estate.

But, in the end, Alex Murdaugh’s crimes caught up with him.

And it was his own son who unknowingly helped cement his downfall from beyond the grave with a damning 50-second cellphone video of a dog.

Rachel Sharp explains how.

How a 50-second video of a dog brought down Alex Murdaugh

Alex Murdaugh’s attorney makes bizarre return to Twitter

Monday 6 March 2023 13:03 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh's attorney Jim Griffin made a bizarre return to Twitter at the weekend after he came under fire for tweeting during the trial.

Mr Griffin shared a photo of himself with his face in a wooden photo prep of a cowboy riding a chicken.

“Walterboro, you were a gracious host. Happy Trails,” he wrote.

This came after his last tweet led to a dressing down from Judge Clifton Newman.

On 18 February, Mr Griffin shared a link to a The Washington Post op-ed titled: “Alex Murdaugh trial reveals a sloppy investigation.”

Judge Newman brought up the post in the courtroom, saying that his actions go “against the spirit of the law and does not pass the feel test” – and also comparing him to Kyrie Irving.

Mr Griffin had conceded that he would not tweet again – about the case or at all – until the trial ended.

Why was Alex Murdaugh convicted of murder?

Monday 6 March 2023 12:30 , Oliver O'Connell

During the six weeks of Alex Murdaugh’s double murder trial, jurors heard hours upon hours of gruesome testimony about how his wife Maggie and son Paul were gunned down at the dog kennels of the family’s sprawling 1,700-acre Moselle estate.

Two different guns were used in the 7 June 2021 attack – neither of which have ever been found.

Paul was ambushed by his attacker as he stood in the feed room of the kennels, being shot twice with a 12-gauge shotgun.

The first shot struck his chest, while a second fatal shot tore through his shoulder, neck and head, blowing his entire brain out of his skull.

Just yards away from Paul, Maggie was shot five times with a .300 Blackout semiautomatic rifle, as she tried to flee her killer.

On 2 March, Murdaugh was found guilty of the murders after jurors deliberated for less than three hours.

Here’s how the prosecution and the defence argued the case:

Alex Murdaugh: What the defence and prosecution argued over six weeks of trial

What prison is Alex Murdaugh going to?

Monday 6 March 2023 12:00 , Rachel Sharp

Alex Murdaugh was handed two consecutive life terms at his sentencing on 3 March, hours after the guilty verdict came down. The sentence will be served at one of the state’s seven maximum security prisons, which only house violent criminals.

Upon leaving the court, he was to be handed over to the custody of the South Carolina Department of Corrections (SCDOC) and taken to the Kirkland Correctional Institution in Columbia.

All male inmates are originally taken to this facility after sentencing, which is one of the state’s maximum security prisons.

Once there, he is expected to have a two-month evaluation including mental and physical health checks.

This evaluation – together with the inmate classification system – will be used to determine which of South Carolina’s highest-security prisons Murdaugh will be sent to spend the duration of his sentence.

The evaluation process takes about 45 days, the SCDOC said in a statement following Murdaugh’s sentencing.

Timeline of murders, financial fraud, unexplained deaths, arrest and conviction

Monday 6 March 2023 11:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Disgraced legal dynasty heir Alex Murdaugh has been convicted in a South Carolina courthouse of the murders of his wife and son.

Murdaugh, 54, was found guilty on 2 March of shooting Paul, 22, twice with a shotgun and Maggie, 52, five times with a rifle on the family’s sprawling hunting lodge in Islandton on 7 June 2021.

He was arrested more than a year after the killings in July 2022 and charged with their murders.

In the 20 months since the brutal double murders propelled the Murdaughs onto national headlines, a series of other scandals, allegations and alleged crimes have also come to light.

Here’s a timeline of the key moments in the case:

Alex Murdaugh: A timeline of murders, financial fraud, crime scene and conviction