Wednesday saw the premiere of the first episode of Netflix’s three-part docuseries, “Murdaugh Murders: A Southern Scandal,” which follows the case of alleged family killer Richard “Alex” Murdaugh, who is now on trial for the double murder of his own family in Walterboro, South Carolina.
Directed by Julia Willoughby Nason and Jenner Furst (of “LuLaRich” and “The Pharmacist” fame, respectively), the film chronicles the criminal claims and scandals that brought down the disbarred attorney and his ruined family dynasty.
What you need to know before you binge-watch “The Murdaugh Murders”
So, what exactly does “Murdaugh Murders” deal with?
While other true-crime documentaries have covered the Murdaugh saga, Netflix’s series delves deeper into the tragic boating accident that took the life of Murdaugh’s younger son Paul in February 2019, the unsolved homicide of Hampton County teen Stephen Smith in 2015, which has been linked to the Murdaugh family by state police, and the murders of Paul and his mother Maggie in June 2021, for which Alex Murdaugh was charged along with more than a hundred other crimes.
Mallory Beach, a teenage daughter of the Murdaughs, drowned in a drunken boating accident that began the family’s decline. After two years, the horrible murders of Paul Murdaugh (the boat’s purported driver) and his mother Maggie surface, revealing a century’s worth of corruption, power, and cover-ups.
Murdaugh Murders take on the killings of Maggie and Paul
The second installment of the documentary series is titled “Murders at Moselle,” and it focuses on the homicides of Richard Murdaugh’s wife Maggie, and their son Paul. Alex Murdaugh told police that on June 7, 2021, at 7:31 p.m., after taking a nap at home, he noticed that he wasn’t home with his family. The man texted his partner and child that he was leaving to see his sick parents.
Murdaugh claims that he came home after 10 o’clock and found his 52-year-old wife and 22-year-old son dead near the dog kennels. Murdaugh, in tears, dialed 911 to report his friends’ deaths. Some people hypothesized that the killer was driven by vengeance for Beach’s murder.
The third episode of the docuseries presents evidence that Alex Murdaugh was at home when Paul and Maggie were killed. Murdaugh was probably there when one of the victims was killed, as evidenced by the high-velocity impact spatter found on his clothing. Furthermore, Alex Murdaugh’s voice may be heard on a video made at 8:44 p.m. on Paul’s phone, just 15 minutes before the killings are believed to have taken place. It doesn’t show Murdaugh did it, but it does cast doubt on his version of events.
Murder charges were filed against Alex Murdaugh in July of 2022. He entered a not-guilty plea and the bond was rejected that same month. Filmmakers tried to interview Murdaugh, but he ignored their attempts.
Trial updates in the case of Alex Murdaugh
The trial against Murdaugh for the murders of his wife and son began on January 23 and is expected to go on for another week or so. Opening proceedings on Tuesday was Buster Murdaugh, the surviving son of Alex Murdaugh. Although his testimony could sometimes be considered emotive, it did not provide any fresh evidence or significant insight.
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Buster, named after his great-grandfather, a longtime member of the 14th Circuit Solicitor’s Office, said that the day of the shootings, June 7, 2021, started like any other, with normal conversations and texts among family members, until his father called him at 10:30 that night to tell him that his mother and brother had been murdered.
After his deposition, in that case, is complete, Alex Murdaugh will go on trial for over a hundred additional counts of criminal conduct. These cases have not yet been scheduled for trial dates and venues.
The disbarred South Carolina lawyer is facing both criminal and civil accusations. For the Gloria Satterfield Estate case, Murdaugh has already signed a confession of judgment for $4.3 million. According to The State, the trial in the wrongful death claim of Mallory Beach could begin as soon as this summer.
The remaining civil cases against Murdaugh have not yet been scheduled for trial.
Murdaugh Murders documentaries on HBO and CNN
There were documentaries about the events broadcast on HBO Max and CNN last October.
Throughout November, HBO Max premiered “Low Country: The Murdaugh Dynasty,” a three-part documentary series. Roundtable interviews with journalists, attorneys, and the alleged Murdaugh victims were included in the October CNN special “The Murdaugh Murders: A Twisted Story of Power and Money.” CNN.com and CNN mobile applications both feature it.
Trailer of Murdaugh Murders (Video) Watch Now