Disgraced lawyer Alex Murdaugh’s legal troubles are continuing to mount with a fresh lawsuit from the ex-girlfriend of his murdered son who says she was left ‘permanently disfigured’ from a boat crash while killed a teenage girl.
Murdaugh is currently in jail for trying to fake his own death and faces a total of 74 criminal charges after allegedly trying to swindle $8.8million in wrongful death and accident settlements while working as a South Carolina injury lawyer.
In February 2019, Murdaugh’s son Paul allegedly ploughed their 17ft bay boat into a bridge, sending three people overboard.
Two were rescued from the water but Mallory Beach, 19, was killed and her body was recovered from the water seven days later.
Paul was allegedly drunk at the time he was driving the boat, but he was not given a sobriety test, booked in jail or even handcuffed after the crash, leading to speculation he received special treatment due to the family’s legal connections.
At the time, Paul was dating Morgan Doughty, who was on the boat at the time and is now seeking punitive damages for the ‘permanent scarring and disfigurement’ she suffered in the disaster, according to a new lawsuit.
Morgan Daughty, who was dating Paul Murtaugh (pictured together) has filed a lawsuit saying she was left ‘permanently disfigured’ from a boat crash in 2019 that left a teenage girl dead
Disgraced lawyer Alex Murdaugh’s legal troubles are continuing to mount with a fresh lawsuit from the ex-girlfriend of his murdered son
Mallory Beach (pictured), 19, was killed after Paul was allegedly drunk driving the boat and her body was recovered from the water seven days later
The lawsuit claims Paul’s mother Maggie spoke to her son shortly before the crash and ‘failed to stop’ him from driving despite his apparent drunkenness.
The mother is also accused of ‘liking’ social media posts of her son drinking while underage.
Miley Altman, another boat crash survivor, filed a separate suit this week alleging the parents enabled the tragedy after they ‘knowingly and willfully allowed their minor son to illegally purchase and consume alcohol.’
But before he was charged over the death of Mallory, and while Alex was being probed for his potential interference in the case, Paul and his mother Maggie were brutally shot dead at the family hunting lodge in a murder mystery which has baffled investigators.
Paul was facing felony charges including boating under the influence causing death at the time of the killings, leading to theories the two tragedies are connected.
Alex’s lawyers have adamantly said he had nothing to do with it and repeatedly said they hope investigators are working as hard to find their killers, and to this day no arrests have been made over the pair’s deaths.
Miley and Morgan are seeking damages from the estate of Paul and Maggie, which is now in the hands of Alex.
The scion of the legal family also faces accusations of attempting to arrange or fake his own death after he allegedly ordered his former client Curtis Smith to shoot him in the head so his son Buster could collect a $10million life insurance policy.
Buster himself has also been linked to the 2015 killing of his classmate Stephen Smith, who was found dead with blunt force trauma.
Alex is the fourth generation of a prominent legal family in tiny Hampton County.
Murdaugh began grabbing national attention after his wife Maggie, 52, and son Paul, 22, were killed at a shooting in the family’s home in June 2021 (pictured together)
His great-grandfather, grandfather and father were all elected prosecutors and his family helped run the biggest law firm in the county for a century.
Alex has been in jail since October for the ever-growing list of breach of trust, forgery, money laundering and computer crime charges.
A judge set his bail at $7million and refused to reduce it, even as Murdaugh’s lawyer argued his bank accounts were seized in civil lawsuits and he could barely afford to buy underwear at the Richland County jail.
Last month, the 53-year-old was slapped with 23 new charges issued by the state grand jury from four new victims who were reportedly swindled, including the family of a deaf quadriplegic.
The new indictments extend Murdaugh’s crimes back more than a decade to 2011, about four years before he was accused of opening two fraudulent accounts with Bank of America in 2015.
As part of his plan, Murdaugh would negotiate settlement money for his clients without telling them what they earned and then deposit the checks meant to pay for their pain and suffering, or the anguish of the death of a loved one, into his own personal accounts to pay off loans or debts in ways prosecutors have not yet fully detailed.
In one of the indictments, the family of deaf quadriplegic Hakeem Pinckney, pictured, was defrauded of $398,714.90 that Murdaugh allegedly used for his own personal benefit
Prosecutors say Murdaugh used money orders given to an unnamed family member to get his hands on the cash.
One of the alleged victims was Hakeem Pinckney, a deaf man involved in a 2009 traffic accident that required permanent life support.
Murdaugh represented the Pinckney family in a lawsuit against the tire manufacturers, but he did not give the $309,000 check to the family, it is claimed.
Instead, he bought money orders that went to cover money he took from the accounts of other clients, to pay down a loan and get cash for himself and an unnamed family member, according to the indictment.
When Pinckney died in a nursing home from the lingering effects of his injuries, Murdaugh got an additional $89,000 settlement on Pinckney’s behalf, but deposited that check in his account without ever telling the man’s family, prosecutors said.
The lawyer for the Pinckney family said the transactions are complex and hard to follow and even more money may have been stolen.
Prosecutors have suggested at Murdaugh’s bond hearing that they still haven’t gotten to the bottom of his shady practices.
Pinckney was black, and most of the people Murdaugh stole from were like him – minorities and not well off, family attorney Justin Bamberg said.
‘Alex gave them just enough money so they would drop on their knees and say “thank you, Jesus” and took the rest,’ Bamberg said.
Another indictment from Natasha Thomas states that Murdaugh allegedly made an effort to defraud her of $350,245.08 starting in 2011 and used the funds for a money order payable to a family member and the Palmetto State Bank in Hampton.
Buster, Margaret ‘Maggie’, Paul and Richard Alex ‘Alec’ Murdaugh (left to right) are at the center of a number of recent tragedies in recent years
Thomas was Pinckney’s cousin and was in the passenger seat of his vehicle at the time of the crash that had left him paralyzed. Murdaugh had represented them both in the 2010 lawsuit against the tire company.
The third indictment details how starting in 2013, Murdaugh allegedly collected 14 settlement checks totaling more than $1.3 million for Arthur Badger whose wife died in a wreck and stole all the money for himself.
Murdaugh allegedly used the money and make it payable to one of his family members, a business associate, and ‘into a conservator’s account for a different person from which Murdaugh had previously been allowed to borrow money.’
A fourth indictment from Deon Martin detailed how Murdaugh allegedly defrauded him of $200,000 in addition to the $338,056.14 investment that was meant to be used for his injuries as well as an additional $45,000 for his settlement.
Murdaugh deposited the checks into the fake bank account which he used for personal reasons, prosecutors say.
His other alleged victims have ranged from family friends and a state trooper, to an immigrant living in the country illegally and a person injured in a car crash, prosecutors have said.
In June 2016, prosecutors allege that ‘while relying on his prestige and reputation as a lawyer,’ Murdaugh reportedly told one of his clients, Johnny Bush, that he allocated $100,00 of his settlement money on ‘accident reconstruction’ for his case.
However, an indictment obtained by DailyMail.com shows that Murdaugh transferred $95,000 to his fraudulent bank account for his personal gain.
Alex Murdaugh was shot in the head and injured on September 4, 2021, while he had car trouble on a road in Hampton County, South Carolina
‘Murdaugh had created this bank account for the purpose of misappropriating funds belonging to others with the illusion that the money was being paid ‘to a legitimate business, the indictment read, noting the lawyer used the money stolen from his clients to pay for his own credit card bills, cash, and checks to associates.
Two months later, Murdaugh allegedly rerouted a $90,000 trust account check that ‘was supposed to be compensated to Jamian Risher for his injuries’ into his secret bank account.
Another indictment reads that Murdaugh had another of his clients, Randy Drawdy, ‘sign a settlement disbursement form which reflected the withholding of $8,819.30 for medical bills and $750.00 for private investigator services’ in November 2017.
But instead of using Drawdy’s settlement fees to pay the other clients he had stolen from, Murdaugh allegedly put the $9,569.30 into his fake bank account.
Nine months later, in August 2018, prosecutors allegedly found records of Murdaugh stealing $85,000 from Jordan Jinks, portrayed as a ‘longtime friend of the family who had come to Murdaugh for help.’
Murdaugh allegedly told Jinks he needed to hold the settlement proceeds to ‘satisfy a medical insurance lien’, according to the Daily Beast. The indictment reads that two months later, Murdaugh then sent a $65,000 check to his personal, hidden bank account.
Prosecutors further allege Murdaugh stealing $112,500 in April 2019 from the personal representative for the estate of Blondell Gary for his own gain.
The disgraced lawyer diverted millions of dollars to a fake bank account from a wrongful-death settlement meant for the sons of the back-then family housekeeper, Gloria Satterfield
Nine months later, between February and July 2020, Murdaugh scammed another client who came to him for help. In time, Murdaugh moved a $750,000 check meant for the client and his injuries to his fraudulent account, according to the indictment.
Between November and December 2020, prosecutors claim Murdaugh assured a client representing the estate of Sandra Taylor that ‘the total wrongful death recovery would only be $30,000’ and that he was not even going to charge a fee because the recovery was so ‘low.’
However, the indictment alleges, Murdaugh managed to recoup ‘over $180,000’ in the wrongful death settlement—before eventually wiring more than $150,000 to his fraudulent bank account.
Murdaugh’s lawyers have tried several times to get his bail reduced. An attempt to get the state Supreme Court involved earlier this month also failed.
Murdaugh previously told Judge Lee he was in ‘the throes of withdrawal’ from an opioid addiction when he arranged to have himself shot on September 4, and also apologized for swindling $4.3 million from the relatives of his housekeeper.
‘I understand there may be concern I may be a danger to myself,’ Murdaugh told the court at the bail hearing.
‘I made a terrible decision that I regret and frankly I’m embarrassed about. I’m not in that place now.’
Through his lawyers, Murdaugh gave a statement to the court in which he confessed to taking $4.3 million from the family of his housekeeper, Gloria Satterfield, which was meant as settlement funds in a wrongful death case.
Family murders, deaths, drug addictions, thefts and arrests: The riddles facing investigators who’ve now charged Alex Murdaugh
2015: Teenager Stephen Smith dies
Smith was found on the side of the road.
Cops investigating the double murder have also reopened the case into a 2015 hit-and-run of teen Stephen Smith
Police officially rule his death a hit-and-run but he had suffered blunt force trauma to the head
His mother has since shared her belief that she thinks he was killed in a hate-crime because he was gay
Case notes obtained by DailyMail.com revealed Paul’s older brother Buster was named multiple times in the investigation.
Police wanted to know more about his relationship with Stephen
Stephen’s mother said he had been having a ‘fling’.
In a deposition years later, one of Paul’s friends said the family had ‘covered’ other killings up.
He mentioned Smith’s death.
2018: Murdaugh family housekeeper Gloria Satterfield dies
Murdaugh family housekeeper Gloria Sattlerfield dies
Gloria died after ‘falling’ down the stairs in the family house
The family gave her family $500.000 in a wrongful death settlement but it’s unclear why her death was ruled to be their fault.
Alex Murdaugh was listed as the defendant in the lawsuit.
Satterfield was only 57 when she died.
She left behind a husband and children.
Her death was also mentioned in the deposition by Paul Murdaugh’s friend.
2019: Mallory Beach dies being thrown from boat driven by Paul Murdaugh
Mallory Beach, 19, died in February 2019
Paul was charged afterwards because he’d been drinking and was behaving ‘belligerently’ that night.
He had been released on bond.
A friend testified that they were scared to speak about the Murdaugh family because they knew how to ‘cover things up’.
That boy named Stephen Smith and the housekeeper, and claimed Paul pushed her
June 7 2021: Paul and Maggie are murdered
The mom and son were found shot dead at the family home in Hampton, South Carolina.
Alex Murdaugh says he found them at the home.
The medical examiner said the pair had been dead for an hour at most when he discovered them.
Alex’s son Paul, 22, (left) and wife Maggie, 52, (right) were found dead from multiple gunshot wounds on June 7 at the family hunting lodge
Alex’s father Randolph Murdaugh III died ‘peacefully’ at home three days after Maggie and Paul were found shot dead
June 10 2021: Alex’s 81-year-old father Randolph Murdaugh III dies ‘naturally’ and ‘peacefully’ at home
September 3: Alex resigns from his law firm amid claims he misused funds
The firm has hired a forensic investigator to go through the accounts
September 4: Alex calls 911 claiming he’s been shot in the head in a drive-by.
He only had ‘surface’ wounds and was also able to call his brother
September 6: Alex resigns from his law firm
The South Carolina legal scion releases a statement confirming his resignation from the firm and announcing he has entered rehab
He said: ‘I’m resigning from my law firm and entering rehab after a long battle that has been exacerbated these murders.’
September 16: Alex turns himself into police over insurance fraud scheme
Murdaugh handed himself over to cops in connection to insurance fraud scheme where he arranged his own killing so that his surviving son could collect $10 million payout.
He faces charges of insurance fraud, conspiracy to commit insurance fraud and filing a false police report.