Alex Murdaugh may be a convicted murderer who will spend the rest of his life in prison, but his murder trial was not the end of his legal woes.
In August, the 54-year-old disgraced South Carolina attorney is set to go on trial for the wrongful death lawsuit filed against his family for the 2019 death of 19-year-old Mallory Beach. Beach was thrown overboard from a boat driven by Paul Murdaugh, Alex’s murdered son, after a night of heavy drinking.
“There’s still a long way to go. There’s still accountability to be had,” Mark Tinsley, an attorney for the Beach family, told Fox News. “…We’re hopeful that the attorney general’s office will continue to investigate the investigators involved in… the boat crash. We think that there were a number of things that happened there that are worthy of prosecution. And we hope that those people are dealt with as well.”
The trial is scheduled for August 14, nearly four years after Beach’s family filed the lawsuit.
Paul Murdaugh was arrested two months after the crash and charged with one count of boating under the influence (BUI) causing death and two counts of causing significant bodily injury, People Magazine reported. He pleaded not guilty and was released on a $50,000 bond, but was murdered before ever standing trial for the case.
At Murdaugh’s trial for murdering his wife, Maggie, and Paul, prosecutors alleged that the wrongful death suit was part of the reason Murdaugh killed his family.
Murdaugh was found guilty earlier this month of murdering his wife and youngest son in an alleged attempt to distract from his numerous financial crimes, for which he still faces prosecution. The decision came after just a few hours of deliberation and a six-week trial where more than 70 witnesses testified.
Lead prosecutor Creighton Waters explained to Judge Clifton Newman during sentencing that the evidence in the trial “shows [Alex] to be a cunning manipulator, a man who placed himself above all others, including his family, a man who violated the trust of so many – including his friends, his family, his partners, his profession, but most of all Maggie and Paul.”
Waters requested the consecutive life sentences, saying Murdaugh’s family, “like everyone else, was unaware of who he really was.”
Murdaugh’s attorneys declined to comment during the hearing, but Murdaugh himself once again proclaimed his innocence.
“I’m innocent. I would never hurt my wife, Maggie, and I would never hurt my son Paul,” Murdaugh said, according to Avery Wilks, chief investigative reporter for the Post and Courier.
Judge Newman excoriated Murdaugh for his repeated lies, including his insistence that he was never at the dog kennels — where Maggie and Paul were murdered — on the day of the crime. Cell phone evidence proved that was a lie, and Murdaugh admitted to lying while testifying in his own defense during the trial.
After the sentencing, Alex’s older brother Randy told The New York Times that while his brother lied to police and stole millions of dollars from former clients, he was still unsure whether Alex actually murdered his wife and son.
Despite this, Randy told the outlet he believes Alex knows more about their murders than he’s said.
“He knows more than what he’s saying,” Randy told the Times. “He’s not telling the truth, in my opinion, about everything there.”
Last week Murdaugh’s attorneys filed a notice that he would be appealing the convictions and sentence, though the notice contains no arguments, NBC News reported. Murdaugh’s attorneys had previously argued at trial that investigators didn’t properly secure the crime scene, suggesting they only focused on Murdaugh for the crimes and didn’t seek other possibilities.