Crime After Being Accused of Misusing Funds, Alex Murdaugh Has His Law License Suspended
Alex Murdaugh Shot in South Carolina 3 Months After His Wife and Son Were Murdered at Their Home
Alex Murdaugh’s attorney Jim Griffin revealed his client was shot on Saturday Griffin and Sheriff T.C. Smalls did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment. RELATED: 'Big Family, Old Money, New Drama': Inside the Powerful S.C. Family at Center of Murder Mystery South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) spokesperson Tommy Crosby tells PEOPLE they have "been requested to investigate a shooting that occurred in Hampton County," but would not provide any additional information. © Provided by People Andrew J.
Following, beleaguered South Carolina attorney was suspended from practicing law in the state where his powerful family has dominated the legal landscape for more than a century.
On Wednesday, five days after being accused of diverting funds from his law firm, Peters Murdaugh Parker Eltzroth & Detrick, the South Carolina Supreme Court placed Alex on an interim suspension,
The suspension comes just days after the 53-year-old scion of the powerful Murdaugh family — whose wife and son wereand to the head on Saturday — resigned from PMPED, the prestigious firm his grandfather founded more than 100 years ago.
Prominent attorney shot months after murders of wife and son
More than two months after his wife and son were found murdered, prominent South Carolina attorney Alex Murdaugh was shot on the side of the road, police said. Alex Murdaugh, 53, called 911 Saturday afternoon to report being shot near Varnville, South Carolina, in Hampton County, according to the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED). Murdaugh said he was changing a tire when a car passed him, turned around and then someone in the car shot him, a family spokesperson told ABC News.
What followed was a head-spinning turn of events over Labor Day weekend. On Saturday, a day after members of the firm confronted Alex about the alleged missing funds, which could exceed $1 million,and report, he called 911 to say he'd been shot on the side of the road while changing a tire. After being released from the hospital on Monday with a superficial wound, according to authorities, Alex announced that he was resigning from the firm and entering rehab for substance abuse.
His woes continued on Wednesday when he was officially suspended by the state's highest court. According to the order, the Office of Disciplinary Counsel had asked the Court to place Alex on interim suspension pursuant to Rule 17(b) of the Rules for Lawyer Disciplinary Enforcement contained in Rule 413 of the South Carolina Appellate Court Rules.
Alex Murdaugh Accused of Misappropriating Money from Law Firm, Forced to Resign Before Shooting
The South Carolina attorney was confronted by members of his law firm just one day before he was shot in the head by an unknown suspect "This is disappointing news for all of us," PMPED said in a statement obtained by the Island Packet, noting that the firm had cut all ties with Murdaugh. "Rest assured that our firm will deal with this in a straightforward manner. There's no place in our firm for such behavior." Murdaugh's attorney Jim Griffin told PEOPLE in a statement that "Alex resigned from the firm after being accused of diverting lawyer fees.
According to that rule, "Upon receipt of sufficient evidence demonstrating that a lawyer poses a substantial threat of serious harm to the public or to the administration of justice, the Supreme Court may place the lawyer on interim suspension pending a final determination in any proceeding under these rules."
The order states that Alex consented to the temporary suspension.
Blow to a Legal Dynasty
The suspension dealt a blow to the reputation of the Murdaugh family, which is considered a legal dynasty throughout the state and especially in the Lowcountry region in the southern portion of the state, where the firm is located.
"Pretty much everyone in the Lowcountry has heard of the Murdaughs," one resident previously told PEOPLE. "They are very powerful around here."
Alex Murdaugh: South Carolina attorney resigns and enters rehab after being shot in the head months after deaths of his wife and son
The law firm of prominent South Carolina attorney Alex Murdaugh released a statement claiming he resigned from the firm prior to his shooting on Saturday, for what it says was a misappropriation of funds. © WTOC Law enforcement responds to the scene of the shooting that left Alex Murdaugh wounded. Murdaugh said he was shot Saturday, about three months after he discovered the bodies of his wife and son shot dead outside the family's home. The firm of Peters, Murdaugh, Parker, Eltzroth & Detrick (PMPED) said Murdaugh resigned Friday.
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In 1910, Randolph Murdaugh Sr. started his own law firm in Hampton, which grew into a multimillion-dollar practice with offices in three counties where generations of Murdaughs have worked ever since, including Alex.
Starting in 1920, Randolph Murdaugh Sr. became the first of a succession of Murdaughs to serve as Solicitor in the 14th Judicial Circuit, prosecuting criminal cases in four counties.
Alex had worked as a volunteer solicitor — until now. On Wednesday, the Solicitor's Office said Alex would no longer prosecute cases as a volunteer,reports.
All this came after members of his law firm confronted Alex about the firm's missing money,reports.
The firm then notified law enforcement and the South Carolina Bar Association, according to the paper.
Alex Murdaugh's Spokesperson Says Shooting Wasn't Self-Inflicted, Shares Details of Incident
A rep for the scandal-ridden South Carolina attorney reached out to PEOPLE to “clear up a number of facts” from the day Murdaugh was shot, the latest twist in the powerful family's ongoing sagaThe day before, the 53-year-old scion of a local legal dynasty had resigned from Peters Murdaugh Parker Eltzroth & Detrick (PMPED), the practice his great-grandfather founded a century ago, following allegations that he stole money from the firm, The New York Times reported.
A Family in Crisis
On Saturday, a day after the members confronted Alex, he called 911 to say he had been shot while changing a tire.
According to the S.C. Law Enforcement Division, he sustained "a superficial gunshot wound to the head."
On Monday, Alex announced that he had resigned from the firm and entered rehab.
Alex's lawyer, Jim Griffin, told PEOPLE in a statement that "Alex resigned from the firm after being accused of diverting lawyer fees. These allegations prompted him to confront his dependency and he voluntarily checked into an in-patient substance abuse rehab facility after being discharged from the hospital Monday."
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Referencing the allegations of malfeasance against him, members of PMPED said in a statement obtained by PEOPLE: "This is disappointing news for all of us."
Stating that the firm had cut all ties with Murdaugh, firm members wrote, "Rest assured that our firm will deal with this in a straightforward manner. There's no place in our firm for such behavior."
According to the Island Packet, a forensic accounting firm is now conducting an investigation into the missing funds.
Cops Turn Up Heat on Lawyer in Wild South Carolina Shooting Saga
Alex Murdaugh is officially at the center of a state investigation. The South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) announced Monday that it has opened a probe into Murdaugh, 53, just days after the legal scion was ousted from his firm over allegations of theft and placed in rehab for drug dependency. In a statement to The Daily Beast, the top law enforcement agency in the state confirmed the criminal investigation into Murdaugh is based on allegations that the father-of-two misappropriated funds from his family’s law firm, Peters, Murdaugh, Parker, Eltzroth & Detrick (PMPED).“I continue to urge the public to be patient and let this investigation take its course.
The ordeal for the Murdaughs began on June 7, when Alex allegedly told police that he'd come home to find his wife, Maggie Murdaugh, 52, and their son Paul Murdaugh, 22,on the grounds of the family's 1,770-acre hunting lodge.
Though no arrests have been made as authorities continue to investigate, the murders made national news and shined a light on a string of mysterious deaths surrounding the family. At the time of his death, Paul was facing charges in connection with the boating accident that killed 19-year-old Mallory Beach in 2019.
In a statement on Wednesday, Alex's older brother, Randolph Murdaugh IV, shed light on how he and members of the firm were dealing with Alex's growing list of troubles.
"I was shocked, just as the rest of my PMPED family, to learn of my brother, Alex's, drug addiction and stealing of money," he said in the statement, which was obtained by PEOPLE. "I love my law firm, family, and also love Alex as my brother. While I will support him in his recovery, I do not support, condone, or excuse his conduct in stealing by manipulating his most trusted relationships."
Jim Griffin did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's requests for comment.
Death of Murdaugh housekeeper who fell in home yields criminal investigation .
Alex Murdaugh's legal woes continued when the family of a former housekeeper filed a lawsuit accusing him and others of failing to pay a wrongful death settlement.A spokesman for the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division said the death of Gloria Satterfield has prompted a review following a request from the Hampton County coroner and based on "information gathered" during a separate investigation involving Alex Murdaugh, the legal scion whose wife and son were fatally shot in June.