During the 18th day of the Murdaugh double murder trial, Senior Special Agent David Owen, the SLED lead case agent for the Murdaugh murders and a veteran state police investigator, provided revealing testimony. However, Murdaugh’s attorneys vigorously cross-examined Owen after his testimony.
State prosecutors presented a video interview of Owen, which began to shift the tide in the early stages of the investigation. Owen directly asked Murdaugh if he killed Maggie and if he knew who killed Paul, making it clear that Murdaugh was the only murder suspect in SLED’s investigation. Owen also referenced their previous discussions about the family guns and ammunition used, indicating that Murdaugh was still involved in the case.
Prosecution Focuses on Alex Murdaugh’s Inconsistent Statements
In his prior interactions with SLED, Murdaugh asserted that he had never visited the family dog kennels, where the crime took place, until discovering the bodies on June 7, 2021. However, during the trial, SLED Senior Special Agent David Owen testified that on the day after the murders, a Murdaugh family friend named Rogan Gibson informed him that he had watched a video on victim Paul Murdaugh’s phone that showed Alex present at the crime scene at approximately 8:44 p.m. Police currently believe that Paul and Maggie were killed at around 8:50 p.m.
In a second interview presented by the prosecution, Murdaugh informed investigators that he had been at his mother’s residence in Almeda for around 45 minutes to an hour on the night in question. However, a witness stated that he was only there for 15 to 20 minutes, contradicting Murdaugh’s account. Additionally, Murdaugh made several other statements that did not align with the information gathered by the police.
Alex Murdaugh’s Defense Team Responds
Although Owen’s testimony carried weight for the State, Murdaugh lawyer Griffin’s cross-examination was just as harsh. Murdaugh’s lawyers repeatedly pointed out flaws in the police work and accusing the SLED agent of presenting misleading information to a grand jury.
Griffin directed a series of questions at SLED Senior Special Agent David Owe, attempting to suggest that the police work was shoddy and incomplete, including:
- Why didn’t the police take measures to preserve evidence that could have excluded Murdaugh as a suspect?
- Why were no murder weapons discovered at the crime scene or other locations?
- Why did SLED wait until September to search Murdaugh’s mother’s house?
- Why were no significant amounts of blood or DNA discovered in Murdaugh’s vehicle?
- If the police believed that Murdaugh changed his clothes after the murders, why did they not request the clothes from him?
- Why were Maggie and Paul’s clothing not examined for DNA?