Yemassee, South Carolina police chief Greg Alexander – a longtime friend of convicted killer Alex Murdaugh and an alleged “fixer” for his once-powerful family – is among the individuals reportedly facing scrutiny from a statewide grand jury in Columbia, S.C.
Multiple sources familiar with the status of this ongoing investigation confirmed Alexander was in the grand jury’s crosshairs – although they declined to discuss the nature of the inquiry or any potential charges he could be facing.
Initial reports indicate grand jurors could be looking at Alexander’s financial records – including money raised and expended in connection with his recent campaign for sheriff of Hampton County.
Irrespective of what the grand jury is focusing on vis-à-vis the veteran lawman, this revelation is significant for several reasons …
First, Alexander’s proximity to the Murdaugh family has been the focus of extensive speculation for many months. This speculation picked up steam during Murdaugh’s dramatic double homicide trial in Walterboro, S.C. – where his name was invoked on multiple occasions by witnesses for both the state and the defense.
In particular, Alexander figured prominently in defense testimony provided by Murdaugh’s younger brother, John Marvin Murdaugh – who claimed “our good friend” the police chief accompanied him to the scene of the graphic double homicide of 52-year-old Maggie Murdaugh and 22-year-old Paul Murdaugh on the Murdaugh family’s “Moselle” hunting property in Colleton County, S.C.
“Were you aware chief Alexander owed your brother money?” assistant attorney general John Conrad asked John Marvin Murdaugh during his cross-examination.
“I was not,” he responded.
Just over a month after his wife and son were murdered, Alex Murdaugh wrote a $5,000 check to Alexander – which I first reported on last March. Alexander told me at the time this money was intended as a loan for his parents and that he was just a “pass-through.” He declined to say whether the money had been repaid.
During that conversation, Alexander referred to Alex Murdaugh as a “longtime friend” who had helped his family in the past.
This wasn’t the only money Alexander received from his many Murdaugh connections. I also reported last March that he raked in at least $5,500 in contributions from Murdaugh family members and allies in his failed bid for Hampton County sheriff.
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Were additional ‘Murdaugh monies’ routed to Alexander? And if so, how? Prosecution witness Nathan Tuten testified during Murdaugh’s double homicide trial that he cashed checks at Palmetto State Bank (PSB) – whose former president has been convicted on federal fraud charges tied to Alex Murdaugh – and delivered envelopes full of money to Murdaugh at his law firm office. According to Tuten, Alexander was among the individuals present in Murdaugh’s office while he was delivering this money.
Alex Murdaugh stopped asking Tuten to cash checks for him a few weeks before the homicides, he claimed.
Alexander has been indicted before by the statewide grand jury. In 2012, while serving as a captain with the Yemassee police department, he was accused of stealing nearly $11,000 from motorists and misusing police funds. These alleged thefts stemmed from traffic stops which occurred in July 2010 and February 2009.
In October 2010, Alexander failed a polygraph examination administered by agents of the S.C. State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) in connection with this investigation.
“It was the opinion of the examiner that deception was indicated in Alexander’s responses to the relevant questions,” the polygraph report (.pdf) noted.
Still, prosecutors in the office of S.C. attorney general Alan Wilson couldn’t make the case against the scandal-scarred lawman – who had the Murdaugh family in his corner at his trial. In November 2012, a Hampton County jury found Alexander not guilty of misconduct in office and of breach of trust tied to the missing $11,000.
According to Alex Murdaugh’s testimony at his double homicide trial, SLED’s alleged mishandling of the Alexander investigation is what led him to distrust the agency. That distrust subsequently contributed to his decision to lie to SLED agents about his whereabouts in the moments prior to the murders of his wife and son on June 7, 2021.
Unfortunately for Murdaugh, lead prosecutor Creighton Waters exposed Murdaugh's claims as the latest in a long line of mistruths told by the disbarred attorney.
“The question is when will it end?” S.C. circuit court judge Clifton Newman asked Murdaugh on March 3, 2023 in sentencing him to consecutive life terms for killing his wife and son.
The revelation about Alexander indicates the investigation into the ‘Murdaugh Murders’ crime and corruption saga - a maze of alleged criminality revolving around Alex Murdaugh and his co-conspirators - is far from over.
During Murdaugh's double homicide trial, our news outlet reported that additional state charges were expected to be filed against Murdaugh and other defendants. Additional federal charges are also likely.
There are also plenty of court proceedings remaining related to pending charges. In addition to the two murder charges of which he has already been convicted, Alex Murdaugh is staring down a multitude of alleged financial crimes as well as drug charges and allegations of obstruction of justice tied to a fatal 2019 boat crash involving his late son, Paul. He is also facing fraud charges tied to a bizarre, botched suicide attempt last Labor Day in Hampton County - the so-called "roadside shooting" incident.
Murdaugh's next financial crimes trial is expected to be held in Richland County over the next few months.
Finally, Murdaugh is a codefendant in multiple civil cases, including a high-profile wrongful death lawsuit tied to the same boat crash - which claimed the life of 19-year-old Mallory Beach of Hampton, S.C. Beach's wrongful death case is currently scheduled to go to trial in Hampton County in August.
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Murdaugh's fall from grace has been swift and spectacular. The 54-year-old lawyer was a fourth generation member of the “House of Murdaugh” – a crumbling legal dynasty which has enjoyed near-dictatorial power over a five-county region in the southernmost tip of South Carolina for decades. Three generations of Murdaughs – including Alex’s late father, Randolph Murdaugh III – held the post of S.C. fourteenth circuit solicitor between 1920-2006.
Alex Murdaugh was an assistant solicitor in the fourteenth circuit - and a former president of the powerful S.C. trial lawyers' lobbying group.
Many believed he and his influential family were above the law ... but investigators and prosecutors have been focused on holding them accountable ever since publicity surrounding the boat crash propelled the Murdaughs onto the statewide stage.
Operating under the auspices of the attorney general, the statewide grand jury (which you can learn more about here) is the entity responsible for issuing indictments in the various Murdaugh related criminal investigations. All of these inquiries are led by SLED with support from prosecutors in Wilson’s office.
The only exceptions? The double homicide indictments successfully prosecuted against Murdaugh - which were brought by a Colleton County grand jury - and the indictments tied to the September 4, 2021 roadside shooting, which were brought by a Hampton County grand jury.
SLED and Wilson's office are in charge of investigating and prosecuting each of these cases, but the indictments issued in connection with them were issued at the county level.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR ...
Will Folks is the founding editor of the news outlet you are currently reading. Prior to founding FITSNews, he served as press secretary to the governor of South Carolina. He lives in the Midlands region of the state with his wife and seven children.
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