Alex Murdaugh: A timeline of murders, financial fraud, unexplained deaths and arrest

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Disgraced legal dynasty heir Alex Murdaugh is currently on trial in a South Carolina courthouse for the murders of his wife and son.

Mr Murdaugh, 54, is accused of shooting Paul, 22, twice with a shotgun and Maggie, 52, five times with a rifle on the family’s sprawling hunting lodge in Islandton on 7 June 2021.

He was arrested more than a year later in July 2022 and charged with their murders.

In the 20 months since the brutal double murders propelled the Murdaughs onto national headlines, a series of other scandals, allegations and alleged crimes have also come to light.

Here’s a timeline of the key moments in the case:

8 July 2015 – Stephen Smith, 19, was found dead in the middle of a road in Hampton County, South Carolina. The openly gay teenager had suffered blunt force trauma to the head and his death was officially ruled a hit-and-run. His family doubted this version of events, and the Murdaugh name cropped up in several police tips and community rumours.

2 February 2018 – The Murdaughs’ long-term housekeeper Gloria Satterfield died in a mysterious trip and fall at the family home. Satterfield, who worked for the family for more than 20 years, was found at the bottom of some stairs. She never resumed consciousness and died from her injuries on 26 February.

24 February 2019 – Paul, then 19, was allegedly drunk driving the family’s boat when it crashed, throwing him and his friends overboard. The body of Mallory Beach, 19, washed up on the shore around a week later.

18 April 2019 – Paul was charged with three felonies over Beach’s death including boating under the influence. He was facing up to 25 years in prison. Beach&...