The murder trial for Alex Murdaugh begins with smartphones and gunshots

As the double murder trial for the infamous South Carolina lawyer began on Wednesday, the prosecution finally presented its proof that Alex Murdaugh killed his wife and son after 19 months of conjecture.

Prosecutor Creighton Waters said in his opening statement that there was gunshot residue on a seat belt, bullets taken from victims that matched ammo boxes from around the home, and telephones never used again only minutes after Murdaugh, his wife, and son were all heard in a cellphone video.

"It's difficult. It's an adventure. This case has several facets, according to Waters. But once we start putting everything together like a jigsaw, like with many difficult things, a picture starts to take shape.

A defence attorney said that prosecutors had the wrong man in mind when they decided Murdaugh was guilty and had spent the entire time attempting to fit inconsequential pieces of evidence or an incomplete image into a narrative that painted the wrong person in a bad light.

The murder trial for Alex Murdaugh begins with smartphones and gunshots

First witness in the Alex Murdaugh trial takes the stand because cellphone data will be "important" in the murder prosecution.

Today's opening comments included graphic information of the victim's horrific injuries, and the first witness in Alex Murdaugh's double murder trial will now take the stand.

At 9.30 a.m. on Thursday, the high-profile trial will resume at Colleton County Courthouse in Walterboro, South Carolina. Prosecutors want to show a 45-minute bodycam footage taken by a police officer who rushed to the horrific murder scene on June 7, 2021.

The full video will be shown, and the prosecution will want the jury to focus on Mr. Murdaugh's actions.

At the family's house, the 54-year-old disgraced legal scion is suspected of shooting his wife Maggie and son Paul. He disputes the charges.

Both sides depicted the victims' injuries in horrific detail during the opening statements on Wednesday. Mr. Murdaugh sobbed as his counsel claimed Paul's skull "exploded like a watermelon" after being shot.

After his life spectacularly fell apart over the past 19 months, Mr. Murdaugh is currently facing a number of legal issues in addition to the murder trial.

The formerly prominent lawyer is currently involved in a number of controversies, including a failed hitman operation, multimillion dollar fraud schemes, and a number of mysterious deaths.

"There is no concrete proof. No eyewitnesses exist. Nothing is captured on camera. There are no prints. No forensic evidence connects him to the crime. None, according to defence attorney Dick Harpootlian.

Waters gave a three-minute detailed account of the scene where Maggie Murdaugh, 52, and her son Paul, 22, were discovered wounded with at least one bullet to the head from two separate weapons, describing the injury to Paul Murdaugh's skull "catastrophic damage," in the opening statement of the prosecution.

The shotgun explosion that killed Paul Murdaugh was so near to his head, according to Harpootlian, that his brain literally erupted from his skull and was discovered at his feet. As soon as his attorney brought up the specifics, Alex Murdaugh started to cry.

According to Harpootlian, "Alex was the devoted father of Paul and the loving spouse of Maggie." You won't hear a single witness claim that the couple's relationship wasn't loving.

At the Colleton County Courthouse, it marked the beginning of a trial that is anticipated to last three weeks. A 12-person jury with six alternates was selected by agreement of all parties on Wednesday.

The 54-year-old Murdaugh is being tried for two charges of murder. He may spend up to life in jail if found guilty.

The man whose family controlled the legal system in the small neighbouring county of Hampton for generations—as prosecutors and private attorneys known for obtaining life-changing settlements for negligence and accident cases—is now facing the end of a stunningly swift and far-reaching fall from grace.

Thursday marks the continuation of Alex Murdaugh's double murder trial.

Washington - Wednesday saw the conclusion of the jury selection process and the start of Alex Murdaugh's double murder trial. The disgraced former South Carolina lawyer is accused of killing his wife and son in an effort, according to the prosecution, to conceal the commission of multi-million dollar financial crimes.

Jan Jeffcoat of The National Desk was joined by trial lawyer and legal expert Karen Conti on Thursday morning to examine the case.

Murdaugh is on trial for the June 2021 slayings of his wife Maggie Murdaugh, 52, and son Paul Murdaugh, 22, in their Colleton County home. He is being held accountable for a whopping 99 offences over 19 indictments.

According to Conti, it's unusual to face accusations this extensive and varied. Unless you see an organisation like the mob or a gang being tried, it's incredibly difficult to defend these cases. You try to submit a guilty plea on some of the counts, possibly the financial accounts, to make it simpler for the government to prove your guilt. Then you focus on the merely speculative murder claims, which are what got you in trouble in the first place.

Conti asserts that the family's standing and influence may have prevented Murdaugh from being charged sooner.

This family has been around for 100 years, and this individual is being protected by a sitting state legislator, Conti noted. They have worked as prosecutors and attorneys. And I believe this family received a pass. And I believe that what we are witnessing is the media, podcasters, and internet sleuths shedding light on these crimes in this family, which is ultimately what I believe led to these indictments.

In addition, Murdaugh is accused of nearly 100 additional offences, including money laundering, stealing millions from customers and the family law practise, tax evasion, and attempting to have a guy shoot Murdaugh to death so his son would be able to collect a $10 million life insurance policy. Before the murder accusation was brought against him, he was being held in custody without bond on those counts.

Before Wednesday, the prosecution did not disclose much about their case. They outlined a timeline of what they believe happened at the Murdaughs' residence and close to the dog kennels on their 1,300-acre (526-hectare) hunting property on June 7, 2021 in their opening statement.

After spending an hour out from the house to check on his dementia-stricken mother, Waters said Murdaugh admitted to investigators that he had never been at the kennels before discovering his wife and son's dead close by.

He, Maggie, and Alex Murdaugh's voices may be heard on a video on Paul Murdaugh's cellphone, according to Waters. Paul Murdaugh's phone was never used again after less than five minutes had passed. About 30 seconds later, Maggie Murdaugh's phone "locks permanently," according to Waters.

The prosecutor said that Alex Murdaugh was also present at many locations where powder and gun residue were discovered.

All of this, according to Harpootlian, was a case of focusing on the facts that supported Murdaugh's guilt and disregarding the information that contradicted it.

After looking for signs of life in his wife and son and dialling 911 in case their assassins were still on his property, Murdaugh picked up a shotgun, according to Harpootlian.

According to the prosecution, bullets discovered near Maggie Murdaugh's body showed marks that matched bullets shot at a range on the premises and in other places. According to Waters, the cartridges were used in an automatic weapon that Alex Murdaugh purchased but cannot be identified

According to Alex Murdaugh's phone, which showed he started his truck just outside his home, Maggie Murdaugh's cellphone, for which her husband provided the code investigators used to find it the following day, showed it was being dumped on the side of the road off the property at the same time, the defence attorney claimed.

When asked why someone would have killed Maggie and Paul Murdaugh with such savagery, Harpootlian said he would have like to be able to explain it to the jury, but the police had ruled out all other possibilities.

"We're not sure why. Indicating the prosecutor, Harpootlian stated, "He doesn't understand why. He has theories on this and that.

At the conclusion of the day, Alex Murdaugh shook the hand of his legal counsel before turning to face his brother and remaining son who were sat behind him. He grinned and pointed at them.

He then made his way to the courtroom's side entrance, where he will be driven to the Colleton County prison, where he is being held until trial.