Prosecutors doubt Alex Murdaugh had time to check wife, son's pulse before calling 911

ByEva Pilgrim ABC logo
Sunday, February 19, 2023
Alex Murdaugh murders trial
Alex Murdaugh murders trial

The prosecution rested its case in the Alex Murdaugh double-murder trial Friday after four weeks and bringing 60 witnesses to the stand. Now, it's the defense's turn, who said they are ready to "rock and roll."

The defense in the Murdaugh murders trial now begins to lay out its case by first raising questions about the time of death.

"Your statement of 9:00 p.m. It could have been 8:00 p.m.," asked defense attorney, Dick Harpootlian.

"It could have been 8:00 p.m.," coroner Richard Harvey responded.

"It could, their deaths could have been the result of being shot at 8 o'clock," Harpootlian reiterated.

"I basically looked at two and a half hours from the time that the call came in to the time I actually got there," Harvey said.

"So they could have been shot at 10:00 p.m.," Harpootlian questioned.

"Could have been," Harvey said.

"Or anytime in between," Harpootlian followed.

"Yes sir," Harvey confirmed.

The defense then pointed out the original statement law enforcement gave the morning after the murders.

"At this time, there is no danger to the public," Sheriff's spokeswoman Shalane Tyndall read to the court.

The state wrapped up its case with bombshell evidence from General Motors and OnStar, potentially shredding his alibi. An expert traced Murdaugh's every move with pinpoint precision, showing he made that 911 call from the car just 20 seconds after arriving at the crime scene.

Murdaugh told police he found his wife Maggie and son Paul at their dog kennels, telling the dispatcher and later police had checked for a pulse. But prosecutors question how Murdaugh would have had time to do all that before calling 911.

"From the moment the suburban arrived at the kennels, how long did it take for that 911 to be made," prosecutor Creighton Waters asked.

"Less than 20 seconds," according to testimony.

Prosecutors said Murdaugh passed the location on the side of the road where Maggie Murdaugh's cell phone was found the next day.