Murdaugh Lost a Lot of Prison Privileges This Week

Inmate can't use phone, tablet, or prison canteen after participating in Fox docuseries
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 31, 2023 8:36 AM CDT
Murdaugh Disciplined for Participating in Fox Docuseries
Alex Murdaugh speaks with his legal team, including Jim Griffin at left, before he is sentenced to two consecutive life sentences for the murder of his wife and son at the Colleton County Courthouse on March 3, 2023 in Walterboro, SC.   (Joshua Boucher/The State via AP, File, Pool)

Imprisoned double murderer Alex Murdaugh just lost his cell phone, tablet, and canteen privileges for breaking prison rules to participate in a Fox Nation docuseries. Murdaugh—a former high-profile lawyer who was sentenced to life in prison without parole in the June 2021 killings of his wife, Margaret, and their younger son, Paul, which were meant to distract from mounting financial crimes—placed a June 10 phone call to his lawyer, Jim Griffin, who recorded Murdaugh reading diary entries from his double murder trial, according to the South Carolina Department of Corrections. Department records show those recordings were for The Fall of the House of Murdaugh, a Fox Nation docuseries that begins airing Thursday, reports NBC News.

Calls between prisoners and their lawyers are not recorded for confidentiality reasons, per the AP. However, on Aug. 15, the warden of the McCormick Correctional Institution, where Murdaugh is housed, received a report from the Office of the Inspector General that referred to Murdaugh's participation in a Fox Nation interview, NBC reports. Inmates of the prison must get permission to speak to the media because the Corrections Department "believes that victims of crime should not have to see or hear the person who victimized them or their family member on the news," according to a statement. The incident report notes Murdaugh also broke prison rules when using another inmate's pin number to place a call, apparently because his wouldn't work.

Murdaugh lost the ability to use a cell phone and tablet—from which he can place calls, view entertainment, read books, and take classes—and lost the ability to purchase items in the prison canteen for a month at a discipline hearing on Monday, per the AP. Griffin was notified that he could lose his ability to speak to his client if he helps Murdaugh violate prison rules again. Fox News is currently teasing "intimate prison revelations from Alex" as part of the docuseries, which also includes "behind-the-scenes footage from the trial" and "never-before-seen home movies." In an interview clip, the Murdaughs' elder son, Buster, says the term "psychopath" is a "fair assessment" of his father. Still, he says his conviction was unfair because jurors made up their minds before hearing evidence. (More Alex Murdaugh stories.)

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