Curtis Edward Smith Biography – Wiki
Curtis Edward Smith is a South Carolina man accused of shooting Alex Murdaugh, the prominent lawyer whose wife and son was mysteriously murdered in June at the family’s hunting lodge.
Smith’s arrest and charges (including assisted suicide) add another layer of drama and strangeness to the case, involving a wealthy and well-known family. It was one of the most mysterious double homicide cases in the country even before Alex Murdaugh, the patriarch was shot, a shooting that authorities now say was an assisted suicide carried out by Smith at Murdaugh’s urging. Murdaugh survived.
Curtis Edward Smith is 61-years-old.
Charged & Arrested
“Officers from the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division arrested a Colleton County man Tuesday in connection with the shooting incident involving Alex Murdaugh on Sept. 4 in Hampton County,” said the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division in a press release on September 14, 2021.
Curtis Edward Smith, 61, was charged with assisted suicide, assault and battery of a highly aggravated nature, pointing and presenting a firearm, insurance fraud, and conspiracy to commit insurance fraud, authorities said, adding that ” expect additional charges in the case and will be announced in a timely manner. Smith has also been charged with the distribution of methamphetamine and possession of marijuana. ”Alex Murdaugh has not been charged.
Authorities have not disclosed how Smith met Murdaugh; however, Smith was Murdaugh’s former legal client. Also, an old obituary for a brother of Curtis Edward Smith who lives in Walterboro indicates that his mother was named “Emaline Murdaugh Smith.” It’s unclear if that gives Smith a family relationship with Murdaugh, distant as that may be. Emaline’s obituary says she was the “daughter of the late Edward Carroll Murdaugh and the late Charity Robertson Murdaugh.”
Authorities noted: “The SLED investigation was requested by the Hampton County Sheriff’s Office. Smith was booked into the Colleton County Detention Center. The case will be processed by the Attorney General’s Office. ”
In the description of the crime provided by SLED, authorities allege that, around September 4, 2021, in the city of Varnville, South Carolina, Curtis Edward Smith committed the crime of conspiracy.
Co-defendant Richard Alexander Murdaugh (Alex Murdaugh) conspired with Curtis Edward Smith for the purpose of “Mr. Smith helping Mr. Murdaugh commit suicide. In the sense that Mr. Murdaugh provided Mr. Smith with a firearm and ordered Mr. Smith to shoot him in the head for the purpose of causing the death of Mr. Murdaugh and allowing the payment of a benefit for death declared to beneficiary b of the insured, Mr. Murdaugh ”, the document alleges.
Smith followed Murdaugh to Old Salkehatchie Road and “shot Mr. Murdaugh while he was on the road,” authorities say.
After shooting Murdaugh in the head, Smith drove to an unknown location and disposed of the firearm, they say. Murdaugh survived the shooting and was taken to hospital.
According to Fox News, before Smith’s arrest was revealed, Murdaugh announced that he would leave his law firm and go into rehab to deal with a “long battle that has exacerbated these murders.”
The statement sent to Fox said: “The murders of my wife and son have caused an incredibly difficult time in my life. I have made many decisions that I really regret. I am resigning from my law firm and am entering rehab after a long battle that has exacerbated these murders. I am immensely sorry for everyone I have hurt, including my family, friends, and colleagues. I ask for prayers as I rehabilitate myself and my relationships. ”
According to The New York Times, Murdaugh had been “kicked out of his powerful law firm over claims that he had wasted funds the day before calling 911 from a country road to say he had been shot in the head,” the firm revealed on Monday.”
The Times reported that Murdaugh and the firm’s leaders agreed that he should resign on Friday, September 3, after a forensic accounting investigation revealed that he had misappropriated what an anonymous source told the outlet was millions of dollars. Dollars.
Murdaugh’s older brother, Randolph “Randy” Murdaugh, IV, a partner at the law firm Peters, Murdaugh, Parker, Eltzroth, and Detrick PA (PMPED) started by his grandfather told Bluffton Today: the rest of my PMPED family, to learn from my brother, Alex, drug addiction and money theft. I love my law firm family and I also love Alex as my brother. While I will support him in his recovery, I do not support, forgive or excuse his conduct in stealing by manipulating his most trusting relationships. I will continue to pursue my client’s interests with the highest degree of honesty and integrity, as I always have. ”
This came after the news that Alex Murdaugh had been shot.
“The next day, Mr. Murdaugh told police that he had been changing a tire on the side of a road in Hampton County, where members of his family had established a powerful legal dynasty for three generations when someone in a truck stopped and shot him in the head, ”the media reported.
According to The New York Times, a state law enforcement spokesman “confirmed that Mr. Murdaugh had suffered” a superficial gunshot wound to the head. ”
Sources told FITS News that Murdaugh has an addiction to opioids.
Murdaugh, whose full name is R. Alexander Murdaugh Sr., discovered Paul Murdaugh, 22, and Maggie Murdaugh, 52, shot to death in the “Moselle” family hunting lodge on June 7, 2021.
Alex Murdaugh was previously called a “person of interest” in the deaths of his son and daughter, who were members of such a prominent and accomplished family that some in South Carolina are likening the double homicide to a John Grisham novel, according to FITS News. . No one has been arrested or charged in the deaths of Paul and Maggie.
The state newspaper described the family as representing “power, justice and lots of money” for nearly a century. Heavy emailed Alex Murdaugh through his law firm asking if he wanted to comment after the murders. He made no comment.
Who is Alex Murdaugh
Murdaugh, a well-known attorney, found the bodies of his murdered son and wife in June 2021, murders that remain unsolved. Murdaugh was shot in a separate incident on Friday, September 4, 2021, along a rural highway, in which he claims he was changing a tire, according to the Charlotte Observer. Murdaugh was shot in the head but survived, the newspaper reported.
On September 13, Murdaugh admitted “to Mr. Smith’s plan to murder him for the purpose of having his son collect a life insurance policy valued at approximately $ 10 million,” according to authorities.
On Sept. 14, Smith admitted to being present during the Murdaugh shooting and to dropping the firearm afterward, authorities say.
The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division, which is investigating the Murdaugh case, told Heavy in an emailed statement: “On September 4, 2021, at 1:34 pm, the County’s Central Dispatch Hampton received a 911 call from Alex Murdaugh, who reported he had been shot on Old Salkehatchie Road near Varnville, South Carolina in Hampton County. ”
SLED noted: “The Hampton County Sheriff’s Office secured the scene and Emergency Medical Services coordinated the medical airlift of Alex Murdaugh to Memorial Health University Medical Center in Savannah, Georgia for treatment of a gunshot wound. superficial on the head. At the request of the Hampton County Sheriff’s Office, SLED was asked to lead the investigation. ”
The statement continued: “SLED personnel was dispatched at 2:41 p.m., and regional agents from the Netherlands arrived on the scene at 3:40 p.m. and SLED crime scene officers arriving on the scene at 4:30 p.m. Regional SLED agents and crime scene agents worked through the night through Sunday morning collecting evidence, processing the crime scene, interviewing potential witnesses, and following up on potential leads. A black Mercedes-Benz SUV driven by Alex Murdaugh was initially processed and eventually towed from the scene to a police seizure lot for further evaluation. At this time no arrests have been made. ”
Heavy obtained the incident report of Murdaugh’s shooting, describing it as an assassination attempt.
According to the Charlotte Observer, the 53-year-old attorney was found shot on the afternoon of Saturday, September 4, 2021, on “a country road in Hampton County.” His attorney said he was recovering at the hospital, the Observer reported.
Jim Griffin, Murdaugh’s attorney, told the Observer that Murdaugh had trouble with the car on his way to Charleston and was stopped on the highway when a truck that had passed him turned around and was shot by the person inside. . Griffin told the newspaper that he obtained this information from Murdaugh’s brother, Randy.
Smith Is Murdaugh’s Former Client
The allegations against Smith do not refer to the murders of Murdaugh’s wife and son, but those deaths are on the minds of many people as the mystery deepens.
The arrest warrant says Smith is from Walterboro, South Carolina. He is a white male who is 6 feet tall, weighs 225 pounds, and has a South Carolina driver’s license. There is a Curtis E. Smith who filed for bankruptcy in 1997 in South Carolina, but the records were not immediately available.
According to the Daily Beast, Smith was Murdaugh’s former client in a personal injury lawsuit a decade ago, and Smith allegedly gave Alex Murdaugh drugs.
The New York Times reported that Murdaugh also represented Smith in a lawsuit against a Charlotte, North Carolina forest management company and for a speeding ticket in 2013.
The Murdaugh family is asking for privacy after the latest shooting, telling the Observer in a statement: “The Murdaugh family has suffered more than any family can imagine. We hope Alex recovers and asks for his privacy while he recovers. ”
Paul Murdaugh and Maggie Murdaugh were shot “execution-style” in a “very ugly” premeditated scene, FITSNews reported.
According to The Augusta Chronicle, the bodies were found “outside the residence, near a kennel,” and the coroner confirmed that they died from “multiple gunshot wounds.”
The suspect or suspects are unclear; neither is the motive, authorities said, though they said “there is no danger to the public,” according to FITSNews.
FITSNews has produced some of the best local reporting on the mysterious murder case. They reported through sources that Alex Murdaugh has a “strong alibi” in the death of his wife and son.
However, Alex Murdaugh is “a central focus of the investigation,” the site reported. Alex Murdaugh has not been arrested, charged, or publicly charged with anything related to the killings; Neither registered source has confirmed the FITSNews account.
The site noted that he has an alibi, but cited a source who said there are “credible concerns” about when the shooting occurred and said authorities are investigating “possible tampering with the crime scene.”
The Post and Courier reported that Maggie Murdaugh was found a few feet from Paul Murdaugh.
Authorities have not released many details. However, FITSNews reported, through law enforcement sources, that the Murdaughs died from “multiple gunshot wounds.”
The site reported that Maggie’s husband and Paul’s father, Richard Alexander Murdaugh Sr., discovered the bodies outside one of the two houses on their 1,700-acre property around 10 p.m. on Monday, June 7, 2021.
Paul is the younger brother in the family photos; the other brother is Richard Alexander Murdaugh Jr., known as “Buster”, who was not harmed. There is no indication that he was present. He works at the family’s law firm, according to his Facebook page.
The Island Packet reported, also through sources, that the victims have been shot with different weapons: a shotgun and an assault rifle. According to the outlet, Alex Murdaugh said he was not home at the time of the shooting.
South Carolina law enforcement has only confirmed that they are “conducting an investigation into a double homicide that took place last night in Colleton County,” reported FITSNews.
Personal Injury Lawyer Who Serves as a Part-Time Prosecutor
Authorities said they found more than one gram of methamphetamine during a search warrant at Smith’s home.
Alex Murdaugh, despite the shooting, is “alert and talking,” according to WLTX.com.
Murdaugh was shot on Salkehatchie Road, the television station reported.
Murdaugh is a former attorney with the law firm Peters, Murdaugh, Parker, Eltzroth & Detrick. “The Murdaugh family and PMPED would like to thank everyone for the many calls and condolences following the deaths of Maggie and Paul Murdaugh. We ask for your patience and continued prayers during this tragic time. Please contact the police if you have any information that may be important, ”the law firm said in a statement posted on its Facebook page.
His company bio states that he graduated from Hampton High School and received a BA in political science from the University of South Carolina in 1990, “a Juris Doctorate in May 1994 from the University of Carolina School of Law. South and was admitted to the South Carolina Bar in November 1994. ”
“Alex represents injured individuals in all areas of personal injury law, including trucking, product liability, and wrongful death cases. He also serves as a part-time Prosecutor for the 14th Judicial Circuit, ”the biography reads.
That resulted in many convictions and also people sent to death row. They run a Hampton family law firm that “has won millions of dollars in civil lawsuits,” the newspaper reported, including “relentlessly pursuing those guilty of fatal collisions.” He once assisted his father, attorney Randolph Murdaugh, in a shooting death case.
— Jordan Cioppa | Live 5 News (@JordanCioppaTV) September 4, 2021
Campaign financial records show Alex Murdaugh to be a Biden donor.
According to The State, “three generations of Murdaughs have been stating prosecutors,” solidifying the power of the family in legal circles. Alex Murdaugh is mentioned in this court case as interviewing an accused of involuntary manslaughter. He previously was president of a state plaintiff bar association.
Alexander, a former Rho No. II is an attorney from Hampton, SC, and serves as an Assistant Attorney General for the 14th Judicial Circuit. He completed his term as president of the South Carolina Association for Justice in 2016. Brother Murdaugh now sits on the Arnold Fields Community Foundation Board and was chairman of the Hampton County Democratic Party from 1996 to 2006, ”he says a short biography on the Kappa Alpha Order page.
According to the Greenville Journal, he once helped create a website for motorists to pay for potholes, saying, “In the long run, we hope legislators can put aside their political differences to pass a bill with a stable source of support. financing that will solve our situation. roads once and for all. Until that happens, the “Pothole Pay” web portal will temporarily ease the burden on drivers at no cost to them. ”
Alex Murdaugh Is Being Sued
Paul Murdaugh faced pending felony charges in the 19-year-old Mallory Beach boating death. The Beach family provided this statement to WJCL through an attorney:
The Beach Family extends its deepest and warmest sympathies to the Murdaugh family during this terrible time. Having suffered the devastating loss of their own daughter, the family prays that the Murdaughs can find some level of peace from this tragic loss. They would like the family and the community to know that their thoughts and continued prayers are with the Murdaughs. It is their most sincere hope that someone will come forward and cooperate with authorities so that the perpetrator of these senseless crimes can be brought to justice.
Beach died in a boating accident near Beaufort, South Carolina, in 2019, and, according to The State, two teenagers were “suspected of driving the boat while intoxicated.” One of them was Paul Murdaugh. At the time of his death, he was facing three felonies of boating under the influence, according to The Island Packet.
According to The State, the Triton boat owned by Alex Murdaugh collided with a bridge, expelling six passengers aged 19 and 20. Solo Beach was killed.
Police alleged that the survivors were “seriously intoxicated,” the state reported.
According to The Island Packet, Mallory’s mother Renee Beach filed a lawsuit against former attorney Randolph Murdaugh III, her son Richard Alexander Murdaugh and her grandson Richard Alexander Murdaugh Jr., Paul’s older brother Buster. The lawsuit alleged that Buster Murdaugh allowed Paul Murdaugh, who according to the outlet was not listed in the lawsuit, to use his identification to purchase alcohol.
According to WSAV-TV, the statements, in that case, alleged that Paul Murdaugh was “drunk and belligerent,” even acting “like he was drugged,” and rejected people’s attempts to get him to stop driving the boat. He was described as a “crazy drunk”, and her girlfriend, another woman (not Beach), alleged that she “slapped her and spat on her while she sat on a cooler,” the television station reported.
Paul Murdaugh’s case was pending at the time of his death and had not changed since “his link was changed to allow him to travel” in July 2019, The Island Packet reported.
In addition, authorities, following the murders of Maggie and Paul, reopened the investigation into the death of 19-year-old Stephen Smith in 2015 in Hampton County. Authorities did not explain whether a connection was suspected. Smith was killed in a hit-and-run, possibly struck by the rearview mirror of a passing car, Live5News reported. He had run out of gas, but his family does not believe the official account of how he died.
“He called her sister one night when he ran out of gas and hid in the woods and didn’t come out until he was sure it was her. We know for sure that it was not a hit and run. Stephen wouldn’t have been on the road, ”Sandy Smith, his mother, told Live5News.
On her Facebook page, Maggie Murdaugh posted several photos showing her with her husband and two children. In 2020, she wrote a tribute to Alex for Father’s Day: “Happy, happy father’s day to the best that everyone loves ❤️ Thank you for all you do for our family. You work so hard for your family and our children. How lucky! Dad, coach, teacher, and best friend😘 ”
She also posted photos from previous family trips to “Moselle,” including quail hunting excursions.
Alex Murdaugh’s Facebook page contains only a few visible posts from his children. On LinkedIn, he just says that he is a lawyer from Hampton, South Carolina. He wrote on Facebook after the murders: “My account has been hacked. Don’t accept any new friend requests from me. ”
Paul Murdaugh’s Facebook page shows photos of him hunting and with his family, but the last publicly visible post is from 2013.