Investigators within the Alex Murdaugh homicide case have unveiled how they pinned down their suspect with a damning cellphone video after a months-long hacking effort.
A video shot on his 22-year-old son Paul’s mobile phone caught his father’s voice on the canine kennels on his household’s Lowcountry property in South Carolina. This was the identical location the place his 52-year-old spouse Margaret and Paul had been discovered lifeless.
However first, investigators wanted to interrupt into Paul’s cellphone. Authorities obtained entry to the cellphone on 13 August, greater than 9 weeks after the murders.
The method took months, however the cellphone passcode was hackable, because it was Paul’s birthday: 041499.
The investigator who cracked the code recounted the method on Dateline. Lt Britt Dove of the South Carolina Regulation Enforcement Division (SLED) stated: “I used to be in disbelief.”
“I hollered out that I discovered it to no one specifically ’trigger I used to be within the workplace working on my own,” he stated. Lt Dove knew the importance of the cellphone, because it tied immediately with Murdaugh’s alibi. The disgraced lawyer allegedly stated that he hadn’t been to the kennels that night time.
As a substitute, Murdaugh advised David Owen, a senior particular agent with SLED, that after dinner, his spouse went to the kennels whereas he was napping at a home on the property, Mr Owen stated on Dateline.
Murdaugh’s alibi was nearly instantly put into query, as a household pal had advised investigators that Paul was caring for this household pal’s canine. Paul even known as this pal to relay some troubles he was having whereas caring for the canine that night time.
Much more damning, this pal additionally advised authorities that he thought he had heard Murdaugh’s voice within the background whereas on the cellphone with Paul.
The pal added that Paul had tried to ship him a video of the canine, however the video wouldn’t ship — that’s how authorities had been alerted that video proof would possibly exist.
Almost a yr after the video was shot, in March 2022, investigators watched the video, which had a time stamp of 8.44 pm. The lieutenant stated the video captured three distinct voices: Paul, his mom, and Alex.
“Then I put headphones on to verify I used to be actually listening to what I assumed I heard,” Lt Dove stated. “This, we knew for a reality then, simply destroyed no matter alibi that was put out.”
Mr Dove relayed the breakthrough to Mr Owen, who stated they now had “tangible proof” that Murdaugh had been mendacity to them.
“It put Alex on the kennels when he stated he wasn’t there,” Agent Owen stated. “I used to be excited. I used to be actually excited.”
The video performed a key function at Murdaugh’s homicide trial earlier this yr, the place he was convicted and was sentenced to life in jail with out parole.
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