The Dallas Morning News
Jurors: Video sealed verdict
Admitting he lied about whereabouts confirmed suspicions
Alex Murdaugh didn’t help his defense when he took the stand at his trial for the murder of his wife and son, three jurors said Monday.
Murdaugh’s testimony only managed to cement what they were already thinking — that he easily lied and could turn on and off his tears at will, the jurors said on NBC’S Today show.
The key piece of evidence in finding the lawyer guilty, they said, was a video on his son’s cellphone that was shot minutes before the killings at the same kennels near where the bodies were found at their sprawling estate in rural South Carolina.
Murdaugh’s voice can be heard on the video even though he insisted for 20 months that he hadn’t been at the kennels that night. Investigators didn’t see the video for more than a year before advances in hacking enabled them to unlock Paul Murdaugh’s iphone. They shared it with the defense ahead of the trial.
When he took the stand, the first thing Murdaugh did was admit he had lied to investigators about being at the kennels, saying he was paranoid of law enforcement because he was addicted to opioids and had pills in his pocket the night of the killings.
“The kennel video, that just kind of sealed the deal,” juror Gwen Generette said.
The jury deliberated for less than three hours Thursday before finding Murdaugh guilty of killing his 22-year-old son, Paul, with two shotgun blasts and his 52-year-old wife, Maggie, with four or five rifle shots.
The now-disbarred lawyer maintained his innocence when he was sentenced Friday to spend the rest of his life in prison for the murders.