Murdaugh trial recap: Day one of jury selection

A look at the scene in Walterboro as Alex Murdaugh's murder trial begins
Published: Jan. 23, 2023 at 7:56 PM EST|Updated: Jan. 24, 2023 at 9:02 AM EST
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WALTERBORO, S.C. (FOX Carolina) - The first day of jury selection for the murder trial of Alex Murdaugh came to a close on Monday night.

Jury selection is expected to take most of the week. On Monday, three different groups of jurors were questioned as part of the selection or “voir dire” process.

There are four total groups of potential jurors. The selection process will continue on Tuesday morning at 9 a.m.

Many jurors were dismissed for their knowledge of the Murdaugh case or connections to parties involved in the trial. The judge read a list of more than 250 potential witnesses in the case, including Murdaugh’s oldest son Buster, his brother Randy Murdaugh, co-conspirator in Murdaugh’s own shooting Curtis Smith, his former housekeeper’s son Tony Satterfield, and former banker Russell Lafitte.

Below is the blog with time-stamped updates throughout day one of jury selection:

Below is the list of questions potential jurors were asked by the court:

  • What is your job? Are you married and, if so, what is your spouse’s job?
  • Are there any physical reasons why you can’t serve on a jury?
  • Have you been convicted of a crime that is punishable by more than a year in prison?
  • Any standard juror exemptions? (Age 65 or older, recent jury service, child care conflicts, etc.)
  • Any special cases that wouldn’t be under the standard juror exemptions?
  • Have you heard about the case before and if so, where?
  • Have you formed an opinion on whether Murdaugh is guilty or innocent? Are you firm in this opinion or would evidence change it?
  • Have you expressed opinions on this case before to family or friends?
  • Are you, any member of your family, or any significant others related by blood or marriage to Maggie, Paul, or Alex, or socially acquainted with the Murdaughs?
  • Are you acquainted with legal teams or know someone who is?
  • Have you been represented by Murdaugh when he was an attorney or do you know someone who was?
  • Are you an employee of the Colleton County Sheriff’s Office, SLED, the Solicitor’s Office, or the Attorney General’s office, or do you have family who is?
  • Have you or any immediate family members been investigated, arrested, charged, or prosecuted by the agencies involved in the case?
  • Have you been represented by Parker Law group, the law firm where Murdaugh used to work? Have you ever attended any functions or events hosted by Parker law group or the Murdaugh family?
  • Are you prevented by any religious beliefs from serving on a jury?
  • Is there any reason you can’t serve as an impartial and fair juror?
  • Are you acquainted with any potential witnesses in the case?
  • Is there any reason, other than all the questions previously asked, that would disqualify you from serving?

Jurors who qualified on Monday were sent home for the day and must call back to the courthouse after 6 p.m. each day to see when they are required to return.

In addition to jury selection, Murdaugh’s legal team filed a new motion Monday, asking the court to exclude or limit testimony from Paul S. Greer, the State’s ballistic expert. This motion comes after a similar motion was filed earlier this month asking the court to exclude testimony from a “blood spatter expert.”