Alex Murdaugh has accepted he faces time behind bars, his lawyer said Friday — blaming his secret drug addiction for him “doing these stupid, illegal things.“
“Look, he’s reconciled to the fact he’s going to prison,” attorney Dick Harpootlian told “Good morning America” of the once-powerful member of one of South Carolina’s most celebrated legal dynasties.
“He understands that — he’s a lawyer. He’s been a lawyer for 25 years — he gets it,” he said of Murdaugh.
Murdaugh “regrets” the “financial transaction issue” that saw him busted this week, accused of stealing millions of dollars of insurance money he collected for the sons of his longtime housekeeper, who died in suspicious circumstances at his home, Harpootlian said.
“And obviously, getting Eddie Smith to [try to] kill him he regrets,” he said of the botched scam to collect $10 million for his surviving son, Buster.
“He has indicated clearly that he is going to try to right every wrong … that he may have committed,” Harpootlian told the ABC morning show of his client, who remains a person of interest in the double slaying of his wife and son in June.
Harpootlian said that the Murdaughs have enjoyed “status and financial success in that community for over 100 years.”
“And with that success, with that privilege, comes responsibility — and unfortunately Alex has forgotten that at some point,” he said.
“He has a long-term oxycontin opiate addiction which … put him in a position where he did these stupid, illegal things,” the lawyer said, pointing out that his client used “opiates and barbiturates.”
Harpootlian said he wanted to “set the record straight” — angered by interviews accused gunman Smith has given in which he denied the legal scion was actually shot during his bizarre suicide-for-hire plot.
“He had two bullet wounds in the head, his skull was fractured, he had a brain bleed, and he was put in ICU because his life was in danger as a result of being shot in the head,” the attorney said.
“They did a CAT scan, skull fracture, bullet wound, brain bleed, oxygen got into the brain, they had to put them in ICU,” he insisted of his client.
“Smith with his longtime drug dealer, according to Alex,” Harpootlian insisted, contradicting Smith’s latest round of interviews.
Harpootlian also insisted that it was “not true” that Murdaugh’s 52-year-old wife, Maggie, had seen a divorce lawyer before she was shot dead alongside their son Paul, 22, in June.
“All I saw was domestic tranquility, love and affection,” the attorney said, stressing that Alex “denies any involvement, any knowledge” about the crime.
“When the police show up and they find a dead wife and a dead son and the husband finds them, most times it’s turned gonna turn out to be that the husband was involved,” Harpootlian said.
“And that unfortunately is the assumption SLED made that night … They keep trying to pound that square peg into the round hole,” he said.
“Somebody out there is responsible for the deaths — the horrible, almost execution-style deaths — of Maggie and Paul. It’s not Alex,” he insisted.