2023-01-24 06:04:01

Before Alex Murdaugh Testimony Starts, Judge Has Key Rulings

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U.S. News & World Report
By Associated Press

WALTERBORO, S.C. (AP) Before testimony begins in South Carolina attorney Alex Murdaugh's murder trial, defense lawyers will ask the judge to make a pair of key rulings this week that could strike a massive amount of evidence from the case.

Prosecutors want to present voluminous evidence of Murdaugh's bad behavior and the numerous other crimes he is charged with to show he killed his wife and son to buy time to prevent his other wrongdoings from being discovered. Defense attorneys don't want the judge to admit the evidence, contending prosecutors are trying to smear Murdaugh to bolster a weak case.

When Circuit Judge Clifton Newman hears arguments after the jury is seated, Murdaughs lawyers also will try to convince him to refuse to admit evidence that authorities said will show blood from his slain younger son spattered on Murdaughs shirt. Defense lawyers said the shirt was destroyed before they could test it and there is evidence the expert examining the shirt changed his conclusions under pressure from state agents.

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