Alex Murdaugh was reportedly planning a birthday party for his son Paul just 10 months after the disgraced attorney shot and killed him on their South Carolina property.
Details of the alleged celebration were described in a new book Tangled Vines: Power, Privilege, and the Murdaugh Family Murders by John Smooth.
Mr. Glatt noted in the book that the party was just one of many efforts Murdaugh undertook to salvage his reputation and convince the public that he had not killed his son and wife Maggie.
Mr. Glatt told court television The information about the alleged party came from an anonymous journalist who filed a freedom of information request at the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center, where Murdaugh was being held at the time.
Murdaugh had not yet been charged with the killing of Paul when the party was due to take place in April 2022 but was behind bars on a series of alleged financial crimes and insurance fraud charges for which he is still awaiting trial.
He made more than 200 calls, many to his surviving son, Buster, who had received a list of specific people to invite to Paul’s 23rd birthday party on April 14, 2022.
In a call on the day of the party, Mr Glatt claims Buster told his father that not everyone on his list was invited but assured him the party would be big and that word had spread on social media.
According to the book, in one of the recorded phone calls, Buster can be heard telling his father, “I think you’ll be glad to know that a couple of these guys down in Charleston are all leaving tonight.” It’s something like a memory thing.”
Murdaugh reportedly responded during the call, “I really appreciate you doing that. Did you find everyone on that list?”
“Not entirely,” Buster replied. “The ones I couldn’t get on the phone I texted and people were posting stuff on social media all day. So everyone knows.”
The alleged party was to be held at the Shem Creek Bar and Grill, a restaurant on the Charleston waterfront. It is not clear whether an official party took place in the restaurant, which has been under new ownership since September 2022. A manager of the restaurant did not return The Independents Call for comments on Monday.
Mr. Glatt also wrote in his book that the prison visits revealed Murdaugh’s “obsession” with having his son leave flowers for his wife, Maggie, on his behalf on Mother’s Day.
The calls reportedly included Murdaugh’s request for his sister-in-law, Liz, to urge Buster to leave the flowers behind.
“Buster is going to the Hampton cemetery tomorrow,” he told her. “Make sure he takes flowers.”
He also reminded Buster to leave the flowers, adding: “And I want you to put some for me too. She would like that.’
In March 2023, Murdaugh was convicted of the June 7, 2021 murders of his son Paul, 22, and wife Maggie, 52.
Their bodies were found by the kennels on his sprawling Hampton estate, Moselle.
Buster stood by his father throughout the murder trial and attended the court hearings with his family members every day to show his support.
He sat during the brutal testimony that Paul was shot twice with a 12-gauge shotgun while standing in the feeding room of the kennels on the wealthy family’s 1,700-acre Moselle estate. The second shot to his head almost completely ejected his brain.
After Murdaugh killed Paul, prosecutors say Murdaugh grabbed a .300 Blackout semi-automatic rifle and opened fire on Maggie as she tried to flee from her husband.
She was shot five times, including twice in the head, after falling to her knees.
Buster also testified in his father’s defense that Murdaugh was “devastated” and “heartbroken” after the deaths of his mother and brother.
After a dramatic and highly publicized trial – in which Murdaugh admitted to lying about his alibi on the night of the murder – the disgraced lawyer was convicted of the murders in March.
Murdaugh also faces more than 100 indictments over a massive financial fraud scheme in which he stole millions of dollars from law firm clients years ago.
He’s also awaiting trial for a botched assassination attempt in which he allegedly paid an accomplice to shoot him on a Hampton County roadside.
Murdaugh is currently serving two life sentences with no chance of parole at McCormick Correctional Institution in South Carolina.