On Wednesday, an FBI vehicle data analyst testified about what location data was logged on Alex’s car the night his wife and son were murdered in 2021.
Dwight Falkofske said it took a year to access data from Alex’s Chevy Suburban. He explained that they used the vehicle’s Bluetooth connectivity system to acquire call data from the vehicle’s infotainment center.
Falkofske said that at 6:23:57 p.m. on the day of the murders, Alex’s vehicle was taken out of park. Hours later, at 9:03:44 p.m., the car finished its boot-up sequence. Seconds later the system was shut down, stopped, and restarted, according to Falkofske.
Falkofske said Alex’s car was taken out of park at 9:06:50 p.m. only to be put back in park 16 minutes later. The same thing reportedly happened at 9:43:05 p.m., when the car was apparently taken out of park and put back into park within the span of three minutes.
Falkofske also said that two calls were made to 911 on the night of the murders at around 10:06:14 p.m. The two calls were reportedly placed four seconds apart.
Falkofske also said that the car was out of park at 10:04:49 p.m. but back into park by 10:05:55 p.m. The same thing reportedly happened at 10:11:45 p.m. and 10:12:48 p.m.
Falkofske’s testimony potentially provides insight about Alex’s alibi, which prosecutors have challenged throughout the trial. Alex has claimed he was napping on the family property when his wife and son went to the dog kennels and were fatally shot. Alex said he woke up and went to his mother’s home before returning and finding their bodies.
On Monday, Mushelle Smith, who is Alex’s mother’s caretaker, testified that Alex instructed her to say that he was at his mother’s home for 30 to 40 minutes on the night of the slayings. However, Smith said Alex was only there for 20 minutes on the night in question, including the five minutes he took to get into the home.
According to Smith, Alex did not tell her why he wanted her to know this information. Though she said the conversation concerned her to the point that she contacted her brother, who is the Varnville’s assistant police chief.
While on the stand, Smith said Alex came over at about 9 p.m. on the night of the slayings, which she thought was unusually late. He allegedly also called the house phone to say he was there even though he was right outside the home.
On Tuesday, one of Alex’s law partners, Ronnie Crosby, testified that Alex specifically told him that he did not go down to the dog kennels with Maggie and Paul. Alex allegedly told Crosby and other people at the firm that he worked until 5:30-6 p.m. before he went home, rode around the family property with Paul, and had dinner.
After dinner, Paul and Maggie reportedly went down to the dog kennels, where they were fatally shot. Alex claimed to have called 911 after discovering their bodies when he returned from his mother’s at about 10 p.m.
However, Crosby went said he is certain that Alex is the man heard in a video shot by Paul minutes before the murders. If true, this would contradict Alex’s claims about his whereabouts when the slayings occurred.
Paul reportedly filmed the 56-second video between 8:44 and 8:45 p.m. Prosecutors said that was around the time Maggie and Paul’s phones became inactive because they were dead.
Prosecutors said cell phone data and forensic evidence tie Alex to the slayings. Meanwhile, Alex’s attorney, Dick Harpootlian, said the cell phone records were incomplete and asserted that Alex would be covered in blood if he killed his wife and son at close range. Harpootlian said no blood was found on Alex’s clothing.
However, State Law Enforcement Division analyst Megan Fletcher testified on Tuesday that a significant amount of gunshot residue was found on a jacket Murdaugh stashed at his parents’ house days after the shooting. Under questioning by the defense, Fletcher said the residue could have come if the jacket were wrapped around a recently fired firearm.
In September 2021, months after Paul and Maggie’s slayings, Alex suffered superficial head wounds when he allegedly had former client Curtis Smith, 61, shoot him in the head so his surviving son, Buster, would receive a $10 million insurance payout.
A day before the shooting, Alex was forced out of his family law firm amid allegations he misappropriated funds.
Two days after the apparent botched suicide, Alex announced he was entering rehabilitation for drugs. Shortly after that, he was charged with insurance fraud in connection with the September 2021 suicide-for-hire plot and released on bail.
However, in October 2021, Alex was rearrested upon leaving a rehabilitation center in Florida for allegedly stealing $4.3 million from Satterfield’s estate. In that case, he was accused of stealing insurance payouts that were intended for Satterfield’s family. Authorities plan to exhume her body amid an ongoing investigation regarding her death.
In addition to the murder charges, Alex faces more than 100 criminal counts related to fraud.
In June 2022, Alex and Smith were indicted for allegedly purchasing and distributing oxycodone in multiple counties. In December 2022, Alex was indicted for tax evasion for allegedly failing to claim the $6 million he allegedly earned through illegal acts between 2011 and 2019.
Alex was charged with Maggie and Paul’s murders days after he was formally disbarred by the South Carolina Supreme Court.
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[Featured image: Dwight Falkofske/Twitter video screengrab]