Alex Murdaugh said Thursday in a court document that he only learned of alleged jury tampering in his double-murder trial after he was sentenced to two life terms in prison for shooting his wife and son.
‘I did not have any knowledge or information that the Colleton County Clerk of Court, Rebecca Hill, or anyone else, had communications with the jury during the trial . . . about the evidence, jury deliberation, and the other matters . . . until after the jury rendered its verdict and I was sentenced,’ he wrote.
His lawyers filed the affidavit Thursday after prosecutors called their petition for a new trial ‘procedurally defective’ for not including the sworn statement and for failing to note when they had first learned of the allegations.
Defense attorneys Jim Griffin and Dick Harpootlian countered that prosecutors are acting in ‘bad faith’ and trying to stall addressing the troubling reports of misconduct.
The defense team has accused Hill of telling jurors not to believe Murdaugh’s testimony and pressuring them to reach a swift guilty verdict, so she could secure a book deal.
The attorneys filed an appeal after the verdict and before they interviewed the three jurors who made the stunning claims.
Earlier this month, the defense team asked the South Carolina Court of Appeals to pause the appeal and hand the case back to the trial judge to decide whether to overturn the verdict based on the newly discovered evidence.
The defense has alleged that Hill, who wrote a memoir about the trial, ‘betrayed her oath of office for money and fame.’ Her attorney, Justin Bamberg, declined to comment.
But South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson responded in a four-page brief that the motion for a new trial is missing critical information – although he didn’t say that the allegations are false.
The defense’s latest filing in the petition for a new trial comes on the same day that Murdaugh admitted to 22 counts of financial misdeeds in federal court, marking the first time he’s pleaded guilty to a crime.
‘I want to take responsibility. I want my son to see me take responsibility. It’s my hope that by taking responsibility that the people I’ve hurt can begin to heal,’ he told the court.
He has denied that he murdered his wife, Maggie, and his son Paul in June 2021.
Fox Nation aired the series ‘The Fall of the House of Murdaugh’ earlier this month, which features interviews with Hill and Murdaugh’s only surviving son, Buster.