Alex Murdaugh’s attorneys have filed a motion for a new trial and are seeking a federal investigation, claiming a South Carolina clerk tampered with the jury that convicted him of murdering his wife and son.

In the motion filed on Tuesday in the State of South Carolina Court of Appeals and obtained by Rolling Stone, Murdaugh’s attorneys allege Colleton County Clerk of Court Rebecca Hill advised the jury “not to believe Murdaugh’s testimony and other evidence presented by the defense, pressuring them to reach a quick guilty verdict, and even misrepresenting critical and material information to the trial judge in her campaign to remove a juror she believed to be favorable to the defense,” per the documents.

During the trial, Hill allegedly “instructed jurors not to be ‘misled’ by evidence presented in Mr. Murdaugh’s defense. She told jurors not to be ‘fooled by’ Mr. Murdaugh’s testimony in his own defense.”

The motion accuses Hill of “frequent private conversations with the jury foreperson, a Court-appointed substitution for the foreperson the jury elected for itself at the request of Ms. Hill.”

During the trial, the document alleges that Hill queried jurors about their opinions on whether Murdaugh was guilty or not. “Ms. Hill invented a story about a Facebook post to remove a juror she believed might not vote guilty,” the motion further claims. “Ms. Hill pressured the jurors to reach a quick verdict, telling them from the outset of their deliberations that it “shouldn’t take them long.”

“Ms. Hill did these things to secure for herself a book deal and media appearances that would not happen in the event of a mistrial. Ms. Hill betrayed her oath of office for money and fame,” the motion alleges.

Hill did not immediately respond to Rolling Stone’s request for comment.

In March, Murdaugh was found guilty of murdering his wife, Maggie, and his son, Paul, at the family’s hunting compound in June 2021. The disbarred attorney was also indicted and charged with two counts of murder and two counts of possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime. Murdaugh was given two consecutive life sentences.

The murder trial is just one of many legal troubles the disgraced scion of a legal dynasty from South Carolina’s southern Lowlands has had to navigate. He also admitted to hiring a hitman to kill him in a botched insurance fraud attempt and was indicted of drug trafficking and money-laundering charges (the alleged hitman, Curtis Edward Smith, was charged in the assisted suicide scheme; Murdaugh’s lawyers claimed Smith was Murdaugh’s drug dealer who supplied him opioids that allegedly fueled Murdaugh’s two-decade addiction). Murdaugh still faces about a dozen lawsuits and more than 100 criminal charges for alleged financial and drug violations.

Murdaugh’s lawyers are also requesting South Carolina U.S. Attorney Adair F. Boroughs open a federal investigation into the violation of his civil rights.


“The serious allegations in the petition filed today speak for themselves but we believe they explain a number of peculiarities in the six-week trial. We request that SLED [South Carolina Law Enforcement Division] stand down on initiating any investigation of these allegations since they are heavily invested in maintaining Alex’s conviction,” Dick Harpootlian and Jim Griffin, attorneys for Alex Murdaugh, said in a statement to Rolling Stone. “We suggest that they wait for the Court of Appeals to rule and receive direction from the trial court, if the Court of Appeals remands the case for an evidentiary hearing. We also would request that those in the media and the public respect the privacy of those included in this filing.”

They added: “Alex Murdaugh maintained and still maintains his innocence of the murder of Maggie and Paul and he believes the truth will ultimately prevail.”