GRISLY details have emerged about last week’s double homicide of Paul Murdaugh and his mother Maggie, as the 22-year-old’s past brushes with the law are revealed.
Paul was awaiting a court date at the time of his death on three felony charges of boating under the influence for a 2019 crash that resulted in the death of 19-year-old Mallory Beach.
He had pleaded not guilty to the allegations that he crashed his father’s 17-foot boat into a bridge “full throttle” after a drunken argument with friends on board.
The six passengers were all flung from the boat and Beach’s body was only found seven days later.
Paul was released on a $50,000 personal recognizance bond after his not guilty plea in May 2019.
Yet two months later, the judge removed the only condition placed on his bond – that he could not travel outside the 14th Judicial Circuit, the Island Packet and Beaufort Gazette reports.
He was also not restricted from drinking alcohol or driving a boat.
Paul had another brush with the law on the water less than three months before his death, according to the Island Packet and Beaufort Gazette.
On March 11, he reportedly received a ticket for boating with an expired fire extinguisher and was fined $105.
The boat involved in this incident, a 2008 Scout boat, was not the same as the vessel involved in the fatal 2019 crash, which was a 2006 Sea Hunt.
Both were owned by Paul’s father Alex.
There is no evidence that alcohol consumption was involved.
He also received a traffic ticket in May 2020 for driving more than 15mph over the speed limit.
Further information on the ticket is not yet available.
The judge did not implement the restrictions on Paul when he was granted bond despite him already having received a 2017 citation for possession of alcohol by a minor.
Two friends on the boat with Paul on the night of the crash were also reportedly charged in that incident, The Island Packet reported.
Paul's father was his attorney during the case.
The charges were dismissed after Paul completed an alcohol diversion program.
It was previously reported that Paul allegedly had a drunken alter ego called "Timmy."
A friend reportedly said that the 22-year-old behaved differently when he was drunk, and so friends decided to give him a different name, court documents state.
The Colleton County Sheriff’s Office confirmed on Tuesday that Alex Murdaugh, Maggie's husband and Paul's father, made the 911 call about the fatal shooting of the South Carolina mother and son.
Deputies arrived at the prominent legal family’s hunting lodge just before 10.30pm on June 7 before calling in the State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) for help.
The bodies were reportedly found lying yards apart near the dog kennels with multiple gunshot wounds.
It is believed that two different firearms were used to kill the mother and son.
Paul suffered wounds to his upper body and head from what appeared to have been a shotgun, while an assault rifle is thought to have been used to kill 52-year-old Maggie.
SLED is leading the investigation after the sheriff’s office noted a “conflict of interest” due to Alex Murdaugh’s work as a prosecutor.
He has said he was not at the lodge at the time of the shooting.
The division has released little information on the deaths with no motive or suspect identified.
"SLED is committed to conducting a professional and thorough criminal investigation to bring e in the deaths of Paul and Maggie," it said in a press release on Tuesday.
"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.”
Beach’s family had also filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Paul Murdaugh over the teen’s death in the boat crash.
Days before Paul’s murder, a lengthy, court-ordered mediation session failed to resolve the civil suit brought by Beach’s family, the Charlotte Observer reports.
The charges against Paul will now be dropped but the civil suit may still continue.
Authorities are investigating the possibility that Paul was the main target of the attack.
It has not been indicated if cops believe the murders to be linked to Beach's death.
Her family has called on anyone with information on the murder to come forward.
Three days after their deaths, Paul's grandfather Randolph Murdaugh III died after an illness and was buried on Sunday.
The Murdaugh family is highly influential in their South Carolina community and was considered a legal powerhouse.
Three generations of the family have served as the 14th Circuit Solicitor in the southern part of the state, InsideEdition reports.
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