Paul and Maggie Murdaugh Killings: 1st Statement Released by South Carolina Agency Investigating Homicides
Ever since son and mother Paul and Maggie Murdaugh, both members of a prominent South Carolina family, were found brutally killed outside of their home last Monday, authorities have remained tight-lipped.
The department investigating the killings of Paul and Maggie Murdaugh released its first public statement since their deaths nine days ago, saying it is working to "bring justice" to the mother and son's loved ones following the brutal slayings.
The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division confirmed the identity of the 911 caller who alerted authorities to the deaths as Alex Murdaugh, Paul's father and Maggie's husband, according to a press release. Alex Murdaugh is an attorney and son belonging to a powerful patriarchy of men who have served as 14th Circuit Solicitor in South Carolina for nearly 85 years.
Paul, 22, and his mother Margaret "Maggie," 52, were found dead with multiple gunshot wounds outside of their family hunting lodge in Colleton County on June 7. Authorities say they were shot sometime between 9 and 9:30 p.m.
Alex Murdaugh called the police at 10:07 p.m. and shortly after, local police arrived at Moselle Road at 11:47 p.m. SLED agents responded to the scene at 12:07 a.m. on June 8.
"Crime scene personnel worked throughout the morning of June 8 to collect evidence and submitted it to SLED's forensic lab, which immediately began processing and testing the evidence," the release said.
Since Paul and Maggie Murdaugh's deaths, the Colleton County Sheriff's Office, the town's local police department, recused themselves from the investigation and handed the case over to the SLED.
No arrests have been made and no suspects have been publicly named, but a SLED spokesperson told reporters last week that there is no danger to the public at this time.
The deaths of Paul and Maggie have given way to many questions among those in the small town that has lived in the shadows of the powerful legal family. At the time of his death, Paul Murdaugh was facing three felony charges of boating under the influence resulting in the death of 19-year-old Mallory Beach.
Paul Murdaugh was reportedly "intoxicated" while driving his father's 17-foot boat when he accelerated it "full throttle." All six occupants were ejected from the boat, but five were able to make it safely back to shore. Mallory Beach was missing for a week until her body resurfaced.
Paul Murdaugh was released on a $50,000 personal recognizance bond and never served a day in jail. A year later, Mallory's mother filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the Murdaughs and two establishments that allegedly sold alcohol to the group of minors the night of her death.
Two high-ranking officials both judges of the 14th Judicial Circuit recused themselves from the lawsuit due to their relationship with the Murdaugh family, according to reports.
Criminal charges against Paul will be dropped once a death certificate is provided to the Attorney General's office but they will continue to investigate the 2019 boat crash, a spokesperson confirmed to Inside Edition Digital.
The SLED said that the forensic lab "immediately began processing and testing the evidence."
“SLED is committed to conducting a professional and thorough criminal investigation to bring justice in the deaths of Paul and Maggie,” it said. “However, we cannot and will not do anything that could jeopardize the integrity of this investigation or that would violate the due process afforded to all in our constitutional system of justice.”
More information will be released "at the appropriate time."
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