‘5’2″ Vigilantes’: Alex Murdaugh Says Deadly Boat Crash Was Catalyst to Paul and Maggie’s Murders

Alex Murdaugh testified on Friday that he still believes the deadly 2019 boat crash involving Paul played a role in Paul and Maggie’s 2021 murders.

Alex said that he believes social media posts regarding Paul’s alleged drunk boating incident may have emboldened someone to kill him and Maggie. Alex noted that he believed this immediately after their slayings and he still believes it now.

“They hated Paul Murdaugh, and they had anger in their heart. That is the only reason that someone could be angry at Paul Paul like that and hate him like that,” Alex said, holding back tears.

Prosecutor Creighton Waters responded to Alex’s assertion by describing Paul and Maggie’s apparent killers as “5’2″ vigilantes.” Later on, he characterized the supposed suspect as a child.

Waters’ comments are apparently a dig at the defense’s assertion that the murderer is short. The defense previously introduced an expert that determined that it was highly unlikely that Alex — who stands at 6 feet, 4 inches — committed the shootings because the trajectory of the bullets suggests the shooter was significantly shorter.

In February 2019, Paul reportedly crashed his boat into Archer’s Creek Bridge in Beaufort County. Passenger Mallory Beach, 19, was ejected from the boat and killed; five other people aboard were injured. Paul was charged with felony boating under the influence in connection with Beach’s death, but he was murdered before he could face trial.

In June 2021, Paul and Maggie were found fatally shot at their family property in Colleton County. Despite Alex’s claims, prosecutors said cell phone data and forensic evidence tie him to the slayings. Conversely, 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.

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.

[Featured image: Twitter video screengrab]