How Alex Murdog’s son helped solve his murder and bring his father to justice
Alex Murdo has denied being near the scene where he brutally murdered his wife Maggie and 22-year-old son Paul for a year and a half.
But it was one of his victims – his son – who, after his death, provided the key evidence that led legal experts to expose his father’s web of lies and ultimately lead to his conviction for the double murder.
Palm Beach County District Attorney Dave Aronberg told CNN Thursday night: “At the end of the day, it’s amazing that this victim, Paul Murdaugh, came forward with his own murder.
Murdo, a disgraced former South Carolina state attorney, was sentenced Thursday to life in prison without the possibility of parole a day after he was convicted of shooting his wife and son to death. He claimed his innocence.
The main evidence came from a video taken before Paul was shot. It seemed to show one of the family dogs near the kennels on their property. He also recorded Alex Murdog’s voice in the background and placed him at the scene of the crime.
The video, which Murdo was unaware of until the trial, marked the collapse of his alibi and left him no choice but to take the stand and explain why he repeatedly lied to authorities about his fate, legal experts told CNN.
Murdo denied killing his wife and son, saying he lied about his whereabouts because of paranoid thoughts stemming from his years of addiction to opioid painkillers, as well as his distrust of investigators. While on the stand, he admitted to stealing millions from his law firm and clients over two decades, among other lies.
He told the jury that despite his past deceptions, he was honest about one thing: He didn’t kill his family.
But the jury did not believe him.
And with little or no direct evidence linking Murdoch to the scene, South Carolina’s attorney general credited the video clip for a quick jury verdict.
“This was a case of circumstantial evidence, but people have to understand that circumstantial evidence is just as powerful as direct evidence,” South Carolina Attorney General Alan said on Friday. Wilson, who was part of the pursuit team. “I think the kennel video hung it up.”
“The jury saw how he was trying to manipulate them, they saw how he lied and they read it, they heard the video about the kennels and they made the right decision.”
Craig Moyer, one of the jurors who assisted the defendant, told ABC News in an initial interview that it took the panel less than an hour to reach a unanimous decision.
It was the video that convinced him.
“I heard his voice clearly,” Moyer told ABC. “And so can everyone else.”
Moyer said he was surprised Murdo admitted to lying about the video, but he still doesn’t believe the defendant was telling the truth about what happened on the night of June 7, 2021.
Murdo is “a good liar,” Moyer said, “but not good enough.”
“When he spoke, Alex Murdoch, it was his chance to make his case. It was a tough sell,” said Joey Jackson, a CNN criminal defense attorney and legal expert. “Whether you denied, denied, or denied being in the kennel, you stood your ground because you were there. Cell phone data will put you there, in-car data will put you there, and your own voice will take you there, thanks to what your son wrote.
“I think because of what this juror said, he … (Alex Murdo) continued to lie, the evidence was clear and he was of the opinion that he was guilty,” Jackson added. .
‘He just punched’: Juror on whether or not Murdo was crying on the stand
The video was shot by Paul at 8:44 p.m. on the day of the murder, the court heard.
Colleton County Coroner Richard Harvey said he estimated Maggie and Paul’s time of death to be around 9 p.m., but he said it was possible. The couple could have been shot anytime between 8pm and 10pm
After admitting to lying to authorities about his whereabouts that night, Murdo said he briefly visited the kennel and left at 8:47 p.m.
He then went to his mother’s and when he got home he found the bodies of Maggie and Paul, Murdo said.
Murdo told the court that as his long-term addiction developed, it often left him with “paranoid thinking”. Those paranoid thoughts emerged the night of the murder, he said, when investigators examined his arm for gunshot residue and questioned him about his relationship with his wife and son. Murdow explained why he lied.
“All of that, along with my mistrust of (South Carolina law enforcement) after I found them, made me paranoid,” he said. “I had no concrete ideas. I don’t think I could think. And I lied about being there, I’m very sorry for what I did.
“I told my family if I lied, I had to lie,” he told the court.
Former prosecutor Sarah Ford told CNN that Murdog had “no choice but to talk and explain” the kennel video.
“And the jury didn’t buy that explanation. “He lied a lot before he walked into the courtroom, before he got on the stand, and the jury believed he lied on that stand,” he said. Ford.
Following his sentencing, Murdo was released to the South Carolina Department of Corrections.
He was being treated Friday evening at the Columbia Intake and Assessment Center, the department said in a news release. He shaved his head as part of the process, a standard procedure for inmates to be processed through the system, said department spokeswoman Christy Shain.
Murdow will then undergo medical examinations and undergo a mental health and education evaluation, the release said.
Over the next month and a half, department officials will consider the results of his tests and evaluations, as well as his crime and sentence, when deciding what maximum security prison he should be sent to, the department said.
Correction: An earlier version of this story misstated which video featured Alex Murdo’s voice. It was a video shot on Paul Murdo’s phone at the family nursery.
All news on the site does not represent the views of the site, but we automatically submit this news and translate it using software technology on the site, rather than a human editor.