Murdaugh murders: Cops clueless about motive, refuse to release 911 call details

Paul Murdaugh and his 52-year-old mother were found shot dead on the night of June 7 at their hunting lodge in Islandton, South Carolina


                            Murdaugh murders: Cops clueless about motive, refuse to release 911 call details
Paul Murdaugh was found shot dead along with his mother Maggie on June 7 (South Carolina Attorney General's Office)

ISLANDTON, SOUTH CAROLINA: Last Monday night, June 7, a tragedy happened that not only shook the US state of South Carolina, but also the entire country. The Murdaughs  -- a prominent Hampton family -- lost two of their members, Paul Murdaugh and his 52-year-old mother, Margaret aka Maggie. It has been said the pair was murdered while they were at their hunting lodge in Islandton. However, it’s been a week, authorities have not said anything major about the case as some details have started to emerge.

Though sources close to the probe have claimed that the 22-year-old Paul, accused of killing 19-year-old Mallory Beach in February 2019,  was the target of the alleged murder, who was shot twice in the head and upper body with a shotgun, there is no official confirmation about it. Sources also added that Maggie was killed because she was at the wrong place, at the wrong time. But, till now, authorities have only released a rough sketch of what happened on the fateful night of June 7 without giving any specific information.

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They have also not said anything about potential suspects or motives, leading to several speculations, like the double murder was connected to the 2019 tragedy, and how justice can be done with the presence of the powerful Murdaughs. The well-known family’s three generations have served as solicitor of the state’s 14th judicial circuit from 1920-2006, and two Murdaughs, including Richard Alexander Murdaugh Sr, who is Paul’s father and Maggie’s husband, is associated with Hampton’s notable law firm -- Peters, Murdaugh, Parker, Eltzroth and Detrick (PMPED).

What are the official details so far?

The Colleton County Sheriff's Office has released a single sentence statement that read, “On June 7, 2021, at approximately 2226 hours I responded to 4147 Moselle Rd in Colleton County in reference to two gunshot victims found by the caller.” When deputies reached there, they reportedly discovered remains of Paul and Maggie, Colleton County Coroner Rich Harvey said, who also mentioned that the duo had suffered fatal injuries because of multiple gunshot wounds. Their deaths were declared as homicides.

According to Harvey, Paul and Maggie died between 9 pm and 9:30 pm last Monday. Some legal insiders, whose names have not been revealed since they are not authorized to say anything about the ongoing probe, said Alex was the one who first found the bodies of his son and wife that were lying a few yards apart from each other in their sprawling estate. Sources added Alex told authorities that he was not present when the two were shot dead.

Regarding any third person’s presence at the crime scene, The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED)’s spokesperson Tommy Crosby said as reported by The Island Packet that the police will not “do anything that could jeopardize the integrity of this investigation and thus feel it is inappropriate to comment on specifics while this investigation is ongoing. If you or someone you know has information regarding this incident, please call the Colleton Sheriff’s Office at 843-549-2211 or Crime Stoppers at 888-CRIMESC.” He also refused to answer if the bodies were moved by anyone.

The Colleton County Sheriff’s Office’s spokesperson Shalane Lowes also said, “We can’t release any information that would hinder the integrity of the case.” They even declined to release details of the 911 calls from the incident. Reports have emerged that said Paul was killed with a shotgun while his mother was hit with what seems to have been an assault rifle. But Crosby refused to provide how many people they have interrogated so far in connection to the deaths. He just mentioned SLED is “pursuing all leads, as we do for every investigation.” Besides, there are reportedly no updates on autopsies yet.

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