Jeffrey Collins, The Associated Press

Jeffrey Collins

The Associated Press

Columbia, SC, United States

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Past articles by Jeffrey:

What to know about Alex Murdaugh’s murder trial

Alex Murdaugh’s family long dominated the legal scene in his small South Carolina county but for the past six weeks, Murdaugh has been on the other side of the courtroom, standing trial on murder charges in the shootings of his wife and son. More than 75 witnesses have been called and about 800 photographs, reports and exhibits have been […] → Read More

On stand, Alex Murdaugh denies killings but admits lying

WALTERBORO, S.C. (AP) – Disgraced South Carolina attorney Alex Murdaugh denied killing his wife and son but admitted lying about when he last saw them as he took the stand in his own defense Thursday at his double murder trial. Murdaugh, 54, is charged with fatally shooting his wife, Maggie, 52, and their 22-year-old son, Paul, […] → Read More

Alex Murdaugh’s surviving son takes stand at murder trial

Alex Murdaugh’s defense called his surviving son to the stand Tuesday to poke holes in evidence prosecutors have presented in the disgraced South Carolina attorney’s double murder trial. Buster Murdaugh answered questions in a matter-of-fact tone, ranging from how he found out about the killings to how his brother would steal his ID and use it […] → Read More

Agent: Alex Murdaugh wanted to die after wife, son killed

Alex Murdaugh and a friend spent just minutes planning a failed attempt to fatally shoot the lawyer on a lonely South Carolina roadside so his son could collect a multimillion-dollar life insurance policy, months after his wife and other son were shot to death, according to testimony Thursday in his double murder trial. But the shot […] → Read More

Hose becomes prime evidence in Alex Murdaugh’s murder trial

WALTERBORO, S.C. (AP) — The man who took care of the dogs at Alex Murdaugh’s home testified Tuesday during the disgraced attorney’s double murder trial that puddles of water were not where they should have been and the dogs were in the wrong kennels when police arrived after Murdaugh’s son and wife were killed. But under cross […] → Read More

Attorney: I trusted Alex Murdaugh despite odd fee payments

A lawyer testifying in Alex Murdaugh’s double murder trial in South Carolina said he trusted Murdaugh even though the disgraced lawyer suggested an unusual way to split fees from a case the two had worked on together. Attorney Chris Wilson said he had no reason to be suspicious when Murdaugh asked to have the $792,000 fee deposited […] → Read More

Paralegal angry by Alex Murdaugh theft, knew he loved family

Alex Murdaugh’s paralegal testified Wednesday at his double murder trial about the betrayal she felt when she discovered he lied and manipulated to steal millions of dollars from clients. But Annette Griswold also told jurors Murdaugh was a dedicated family man so distraught after his wife and son were killed he could no longer stay at […] → Read More

Maid’s son tells judge Alex Murdaugh took $4M for her death

For much of disgraced South Carolina attorney Alex Murdaugh’s double murder trial, witnesses have talked about a generous and loving man — but prosecutors want jurors to know that same man stole over $4 million from his housekeeper’s relatives after she died at work, and killed his wife and son to cover up his crimes. Prosecutors asked […] → Read More

Both sides use trove of cell data at Alex Murdaugh trial

A state agent testifying Wednesday in Alex Murdaugh’s double murder trial meticulously reconstructed activity from his iPhone and the cellphones of his son and wife the night they were killed to try to link the disgraced South Carolina attorney to the shooting deaths. The key evidence for prosecutors is a video from the son’s phone of a […] → Read More

Before Alex Murdaugh testimony starts, judge has key rulings

WALTERBORO, S.C. (AP) — Before testimony begins in South Carolina attorney Alex Murdaugh’s murder trial, defense lawyers will ask the judge to make a pair of key rulings this week that could strike a massive amount of evidence from the case. Prosecutors want to present voluminous evidence of Murdaugh’s bad behavior and the numerous other crimes […] → Read More

South Carolina still seeking a way to hold executions

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — As judges decide if the electric chair or a firing squad are legal execution methods in South Carolina, lawmakers are trying to figure out how 14 other states have managed to get the drugs for lethal injections. The state’s latest attempt to end nearly 12 years without an execution is to […] → Read More

Abortion a surprise focus of the South Carolina Legislature

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The South Carolina General Assembly opened its 2023 legislative session Tuesday with a surprising priority: abortion. Many lawmakers thought the issue was just about sett… → Read More

South Carolina Senate again rejects abortion ban; bill not dead

COLUMBIA S.C. (AP) — South Carolina senators again Tuesday rejected a proposal to ban nearly all abortions in the state but left open a small chance that some compromise could be reached in the less than four weeks the General Assembly has left to meet this year. The stalemate in the Republican-dominated Legislature hasn’t changed over the past month. […] → Read More

Major abortion law changes unlikely in South Carolina after Roe

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Whether conservative South Carolina changes its abortion laws at all in the wake of this year’s U.S. Supreme Court decision may be decided by divided conservatives Tuesday in the state House. South Carolina for decades was at the forefront of passing more restrictive abortion laws that challenged Roe v. Wade. before the landmark case was overturned this […] → Read More

Rape, incest exceptions pulled from South Carolina abortion bill

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A group of South Carolina senators voted Tuesday to remove exceptions for rape and incest from a proposed abortion ban with Democrats choosing not to vote in what appeared to be a strategy to try to prevent the bill from passing through the Legislature. The 7-3 vote in the Senate Medical Affairs Committee […] → Read More

6 weeks of paid parental leave coming soon in South Carolina

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Starting in October, state employees in South Carolina are entitled to six weeks of parental leave after giving birth or adopting children. Surrounded by Republican and Democratic lawmakers who worked together to pass the bill, Republican Gov. Henry McMaster held a signing ceremony Thursday for the law he put his signature […] → Read More

South Carolina lawmakers consider near total abortion ban

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A small group of South Carolina lawmakers have given their approval to a near total abortion ban that does not include exceptions for pregnancies’ caused by rape or incest. The 3-1 vote Tuesday — all Republicans for it and the lone Democrat against — sets up a showdown later in the day on whether to […] → Read More

Judge to decide if firing squad or electric chair is cruel

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Whether South Carolina can start executing prisoners again either with a firing squad or electric chair is now in the hands of a judge. The case is over whether either method is cruel and unusual punishment banned by the U.S. Constitution. Lawyers for the prisoners say they would feel terrible pain […] → Read More

Personal connections show lawyer Alex Murdaugh’s downfall

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The shooting deaths of South Carolina lawyer Alex Murdaugh’s wife and son started a chain of investigations, strange happenings and legal maneuvers over the past 13 months that his lawyer said will soon lead to murder charges. But Murdaugh’s life was quietly unraveling behind the scenes long before that. Authorities said he was stealing money, addicted to […] → Read More

SC Senate compromise resurrects early voting bill, House OKs

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina senators have unanimously approved a compromise that would allow the state to hold true early voting. The House quickly approved the bill raising the possibility voters could head to the polls for two weeks before the June 14 primary. Senators decided Wednesday to add qualifications for election board members […] → Read More