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The disbarred and disgraced South Carolina attorney Alex Murdaugh pleaded not guilty Wednesday to the new bombshell murder charges accusing him of the double killing of his wife and younger son in June 2021.
Last week’s long-waited announcement from the South Carolina attorney general’s office confirmed a suspect in the June 7, 2021, double homicide of 52-year-old Maggie Murdaugh and 22-year-old Paul Murdaugh.
Court documents say the mother and son were found shot to death by separate weapons – a shotgun and a rifle – by dog kennels on the family’s sprawling 1,772-plus acre Moselle estate straddling Colleton and Hampton counties in a region known as South Carolina’s Low Country after authorities responded to a frantic 911 call from Alex Murdaugh himself.
Positioned between his lawyers Dick Harpootlian and Jim Griffin, Alex Murdaugh — notably handcuffed and donning a freshly shaven haircut, white button-down shirt and slacks – stood for a formal arraignment requested by the defense Tuesday, removing his mask and raising his right hand. Asked how he pleaded to the four felony charges of murder and possession of a firearm during the commission of a violent crime, Murdaugh responded: “Not guilty.” He said to the prosecutor’s question on how he will be tried, “By God and by country,” before taking his seat again at the defense table.
SOUTH CAROLINA LAWYER ALEX MURDAUGH CHARGED WITH MURDER OF WIFE AND SON
Judge Clifton Newman later denied bond for Murdaugh regarding the new murder charges. Murdaugh had been already been held on a $7 million bond since October.
What were coined the mysterious Murdaugh murders served as a catalyst to a slew of investigations by state authorities into the attorney and volunteer prosecutor, as well as his financial dealings.
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Before Thursday’s bombshell murder charges, Murdaugh faced more than 80 other criminal charges through 16 state grand jury indictments for schemes to defraud a slew of victims, including the family of his dead housekeeper, a deaf quadriplegic man and a highway patrolman injured in the line of duty, of a total sum of nearly $8.5 million.