Newly released audio has captured the convicted murderer alex murdaugh blaming his family dogs for the death of his housekeeper, as he now tries to retract the claim five years later.
In a 2018 interview, the disgraced legal dynasty heir claims he had left for work on the morning of February 2, 2018 when he received a call from his wife Maggie.
In the call, Maggie told him that her housekeeper Gloria Satterfield had been injured at the Murdaugh family home on their 1,700-acre Moselle estate in South Carolina.
“I went to work that morning and I got a phone call from my wife that Gloria was hurt, badly hurt, and she was wondering if she could come home,” he says.
“I immediately left and headed for the Moselle.”
He says he rushed to the house, making the trip in about 10 minutes, and got there before emergency services.
“Upon arrival, I found Gloria, my wife and son Paul, and employee Ronnie Freeman in the landing area at the bottom of the steps,” he says.
Murdaugh says that Gloria was “sitting up” and that there was a “big pool of blood” on the floor.
“She had a lot of blood on one side of her face and shortly after I arrived EMS arrived and treated her,” he says.
Before Satterfield was taken away in the ambulance, Murdaugh claims he asked him what had happened.
“She indicated that the dogs had made her fall,” he says.
The interview, released Monday by attorneys representing Satterfield’s children, was conducted in 2018 as part of an insurance claim filed for his death.
Satterfield, who worked for the family for more than 20 years, died on February 26, 2018, three weeks after she was found at the bottom of the steps leading up to the Murdaugh family home.
At the time, Murdaugh claimed that he had tripped over the family dogs and hit his head, and his death was ruled an accidental fall.
However, her death certificate listed her manner of death as “natural” and an autopsy was never carried out.
In an investigative report accompanying the claim in November 2018, and also released Monday, the investigator wrote how Murdaugh had claimed that “Satterfield told her something about ‘the dogs tripped her.'”
“Alex told me that he had heard, from one or more of Satterfield’s relatives that he can’t really remember, that Satterfield had reported that ‘the dogs tripped her,’” the report added.
The document also included accounts of Murdaugh’s wife, Maggie, and son, Paul, whom he brutally murdered on the grounds of the same Moselle property three years later, in June 2021.
Both Maggie and Paul said they were inside the home sleeping when they were awakened by barking from the family’s dogs, according to the report.
Maggie said she had heard the dogs barking “in an unusual tone, as if something had happened” and went outside to find Satterfield lying on the ground with a bleeding head wound.
She said Satterfield was conscious but was muttering “gibberish” and did not know what happened, according to the report.
At the time, the family’s four dogs, Bubba, Blue, Bourbon and Sassie, were near Satterfield.
“Satterfield never told Maggie why Satterfield fell,” the report says.
Maggie said she believed one or more of the dogs had caused Satterfield to trip and fall, however, she described the Bourbon Chocolate Lab as “‘just awful’ and was always whining, attention-seeking and excited.”
Paul, for his part, said in an interview he gave that he “remembers his father Alex coming up and asking what happened and Satterfield ‘said something about dogs’.”
The interview and investigative report were released by attorneys Eric Bland and Ronnie Richter on Monday as they rejected Murdaugh’s sudden change in version of events about what happened to Satterfield, accusing the serial liar of lying about lying. .
After her death, Murdaugh claimed that he would file a wrongful death lawsuit against himself on behalf of Satterfield’s two sons.
He did, but he allegedly stole $4 million in settlement money for himself and the housekeeper’s children didn’t get a dime.
Murdaugh is now accused of stealing $4 million from Satterfield’s family as part of a decade-long multi-million dollar fraud scheme in which he stole millions from his law firm and legal clients.
He is also being sued by the insurance company Nautilus for insurance fraud after he allegedly pocketed money meant for the Satterfield family.
Last week, in court papers responding to that lawsuit, Murdaugh made an explosive confession that he had “made up” the story that Satterfield stumbled upon the dogs, claiming he did so to make sure the insurance company of life will pay
“No dogs were involved in the fall of Gloria Satterfield on February 2, 2018,” the documents read.
“After Ms. Satterfield’s death, Defendant fabricated Ms. Satterfield’s alleged statement that the dogs caused her fall to force her insurers to make a settlement payment, and claimed that she was not on the property. to get the job done.”
He also claimed that Satterfield’s children, his alleged fraud victims, should also face legal action from Nautilus because they recovered more than $7.5 million as a result of the wrongful death lawsuit.
“If Nautilus should never have made any payment to the Satterfield estate and only attempted to do so because it was a victim of fraud, then parties in possession of a recovery of money allegedly stolen from Nautilus are necessary parties to a Nautilus action. for the recovery of that money because (a) the ‘court cannot grant full relief between [the] existing parties’ in their absence, and (b) those persons and entities ‘claim an interest related to the object of this action’ and its absence ‘will leave [existing parties] subject to a substantial risk of incurring double, multiple or inconsistent obligations due to that interest,” he wrote.
At a news conference Monday, Richter lashed out at the “latest disinformation campaign” by the “well-documented liar.”
“As if he hadn’t caused enough damage to the Satterfield family, Murdaugh took further action in the lawsuit,” he said.
Bland said that Murdaugh was lying by changing his story in an effort to convince Nautilus to recover the stolen money from the Satterfields and not from himself.
“He wants to keep the money,” he said.
Mr. Bland explained that if the dogs did not cause the trip and fall accident, this could mean that Murdaugh, and the insurance company, would no longer be responsible for paying.
He said this was simply Murdaugh’s latest efforts to avoid accountability.
“It’s very convenient that the three people who could contradict Alex are dead: Paul, Maggie and Gloria,” he said.
Questions have long swirled around Satterfield’s death after the string of deaths, stolen money and corruption surrounding Murdaugh came to light.
In September 2021, an inquest into her death was reopened, with investigators saying they planned to exhume her body.
This came just days after the Murdaugh financial fraud scheme came to light and three months after the double murder of his wife Maggie and son Paul, who were shot to death on the same property where Satterfield had his fatal “fall.”
This March, Murdaugh was convicted of the June 7, 2021 murders and sentenced to life in prison.
At his high-profile trial, jurors heard how he was motivated to kill his family in an attempt to divert attention from his financial crimes that were bordering on exposure, including the robbery of the Satterfield family.
Satterfield’s death is not the only mysterious death linked to the South Carolina legal dynasty.
A homicide investigation has also been opened into the 2015 death of Stephen Smith, who was found dead in the middle of a highway in Hampton County.
The openly gay 19-year-old had suffered blunt force trauma to the head and his death was officially ruled a hit and run. But Smith’s family has long doubted this version of events, with Murdaugh’s name appearing in various police notices and community rumors.
At the time of his murder, Paul was also awaiting trial in the boating accident death in Mallory Beach.