PORT ROYAL, S.C. (AP) – A South Carolina man from a prominent legal family has been charged in a boating wreck that killed a 19-year-old and injured several other people.
News outlets report Paul Murdaugh has been indicted on charges of boating under the influence causing death and great bodily injury. Murdaugh, Mallory Beach and others were on a boat in February that crashed into the Archer’s Creek Bridge. Beach’s body was found about a week later.
Authorities didn’t take the boat occupants’ blood alcohol levels. The S.C. Department of Natural Resources says it wasn’t clear who was driving.
Murdaugh’s family has long been involved in the area’s justice system.
Beach’s mother, Renee, is suing them, alleging the boat occupants were drinking on a private island owned by the Murdaughs.
The Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office recently recused itself from the investigation because of a “longstanding relationship” with Randolph Murdaugh.
The grandfather is among those named in a suit filed by Renee Beach, Mallory Beach’s mother.
Along with him, she accuses a convenience store and a local restaurant of allowing the underage teens to purchase alcohol, drink alcohol and/or drive the boat while intoxicated.