On Friday, disgraced South Carolina attorney Alex Murdaugh was sentenced to life in prison for the murders of his 22-year-old son, Paul, and his wife, Maggie.
Judge Clifton Newman sentenced Murdaugh after being found guilty of two counts of murder in the June 2021 killings, as well as two counts of possessing a weapon during the commission of the killings.
After less than three hours of deliberation, the jury returned a guilty verdict, ending the six-week trial and its complex web of murder, power, and corruption.
Newman told Murdaugh that he had no doubt the murdered victims’ would haunt him every night.
“You have to see Paul and Maggie at night time when you are attempting to go to sleep. I am sure they will come and visit you,” he said.
“Every night,” said Murdaugh, who repeated several times, “I am innocent.”
However, Newman noted Murdaugh’s ability to continue to lie about the details of the case.
“When will it end?” the judge said.
Additionally, the judge mentioned Murdaugh’s opioid addiction, which the defense tried to use to justify their client’s actions.
Newman, who also discussed how frequently he had run with Murdaugh while working as a lawyer in the South Carolina legal system, suggested that Murdaugh’s heavy drug usage might have contributed to the killings.
“It might not have been you [who killed them]. It might have been the monster you’ve become,” he said.
According to prosecutors, Murdaugh killed his wife and son at the family’s country estate in June 2021 to conceal a string of financial scandals revealed in a civil lawsuit involving Mallory Beach, 19, who died in a boating accident involving his son.
Rather than death, prosecutors requested that Murdaugh receive life in prison without parole.
“Justice was done today,” lead prosecutor Creighton Waters said in a Thursday night news conference. “It doesn’t matter who your family is. It doesn’t matter how much money you have or what people think you have. It doesn’t matter … how prominent you are.