It took a jury less than an hour to find Alex Murdaugh guilty of both murders and two firearms charges
South Carolina patrician attorney Alex Murdaugh was sentenced to two consecutive life sentences without the possibility of parole for the murders of his wife Maggie and son Paul on Friday. Judge Clifton Newman called the evidence against him “overwhelming” and handed down the longest possible sentence.
After a grueling six-week trial, Murdaugh was found guilty of one count of murder each for his wife and son, plus two counts of possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime related to the assault rifle and shotgun he used to shoot. they. The jury took just 45 minutes to convict him on all charges.
Murdaugh, the scion of a powerful Hampton County family, allegedly found Maggie and Paul Murdaugh dead of multiple gunshot wounds near kennels on the family’s hunting property on June 7, 2021. However that, cell phone video footage placed him at the scene with his family. minutes before they were killed, forcing him to change his story, something he would do repeatedly during the trial.
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Prosecutors claim the lawyer killed his family to distract himself from the fraud schemes he had concocted over the years to pay for his opioid addiction. The chief financial officer of his law firm PMPED faced a lack of money just hours before the murders, they noted.
Murdaugh still faces more than 100 other charges, most related to the fraud that amounted to nearly $8.5 million stolen from clients he represented in wrongful-death lawsuits.
Three months after killing his wife and son, Murdaugh was fired for stealing from his customers. He quickly devised a plan to hire a hitman to kill him and secure hefty life insurance for his surviving son, Buster. The disgraced lawyer paid his drug dealer, Curtis Smith, to shoot him, but he survived and soon confessed to the plot, landing both men in prison.
An inquest has also been reopened into the suspicious death of a 19-year-old boy in a 2015 drive-by shooting and the 2018 slip-and-fall death of the family’s housekeeper, who had worked for the Murdaugh family for two decades before her. accident” resulted in a wrongful death settlement from which Murdaugh stole $4 million.
Although Murdaugh admitted he was guilty of fraud, he insisted he was innocent of murder. His defense lawyers have pledged to appeal the sentence.