Body of Alex Murdaugh’s housekeeper to be exhumed four years after mysterious ‘trip and fall’ death

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The body of disgraced South Carolina attorney Alex Murdaugh’s longtime housekeeper Gloria Satterfield is to be exhumed four years after her mysterious trip and fall alleged accident that resulted in her death.  

The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) first said Friday that agents “sought and received permission from the Satterfield family, through their attorney, to exhume the remains of Gloria Satterfield.” 

“This is a complex process that will take weeks, not days,” SLED spokesperson Renée Wunderlich said in a statement emailed to Fox News Digital. “This investigation is still active and ongoing. As such, no additional information from SLED is available at this time.” 

The announcement comes nearly nine months after SLED first disclosed on Sept. 15, 2021, that it was opening a criminal investigation into the death of Satterfield and the handling of her estate. 

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Gloria Satterfield, the longtime housekeeper and nanny for the Murdaugh family, is seen in an undated photo provided by her relatives. 

Gloria Satterfield, the longtime housekeeper and nanny for the Murdaugh family, is seen in an undated photo provided by her relatives.  (Brice Herndon Funeral Home )

In a letter addressed to SLED Chief Mark Keel at the time, Hampton County Coroner Angela Topper expressed concern that Satterfield’s death was never reported to the coroner and an autopsy was never performed. Topper also noted the death certificate said the manner of death was ruled as “natural,” which is inconsistent with injuries sustained in a trip and fall accident. 

Satterfield, who worked for the Murdaugh family for more than 20 years as a nanny and housekeeper, died at a hospital on Feb. 26, 2018. She was 57. She never regained consciousness weeks after Maggie Murdaugh placed a 911 call on Feb. 2, 2018, claiming that her housekeeper tripped up steps outside the home at the Moselle estate that sits between rural Hampton and Colleton counties on Feb. 2, 2018. 

Alex Murdaugh awaits the beginning of his bond hearing in the Richland Judicial Center in Columbia, S.C., Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2021. 

Alex Murdaugh awaits the beginning of his bond hearing in the Richland Judicial Center in Columbia, S.C., Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2021.  ((AP Photo/Lewis M. Levine, Pool))

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Neither Maggie, nor her son, Paul Murdaugh, are heard on the since released 911 call making mention of any dogs, which Alex Murdaugh had claimed Satterfield tripped over, causing the fall. 

At his housekeeper’s funeral, Alex Murdaugh allegedly convinced Satterfield’s sons that the alleged accident was his fault and that the two should sue him through attorney Corey Fleming for an insurance payout. But the two sons later alleged years went by without them hearing anything about the money

Alex Murdaugh appeared in a new mugshot following his arrest in Orlando, Florida on charges in connection to Gloria Satterfield insurance settlements

Alex Murdaugh appeared in a new mugshot following his arrest in Orlando, Florida on charges in connection to Gloria Satterfield insurance settlements (Orange County Corrections)

Prosecutors say Murdaugh and Fleming secured $4.3 million in insurance settlements as a result of Satterfield’s death, but the two lawyers pocketed most of the money for themselves, with Murdaugh taking the lion’s share. 

To date, through 15 indictments containing 79 charges, a South Carolina grand jury has indicted Murdaugh for schemes to defraud Satterfield’s sons and a slew of other alleged victims, including a deaf quadriplegic man and a highway patrolman injured in the line of duty, of a total of nearly $8.5 million.

Alex Murdaugh, right, is shown here with his wife and two sons. 

Alex Murdaugh, right, is shown here with his wife and two sons.  (Fox News)

Murdaugh is accused of cooking up an assisted suicide plot last Labor Day weekend to have himself shot and killed on a roadside so that his surviving son, Buster Murdaugh, could collect a $10 million life insurance payout. But Murdaugh was only grazed by a bullet and survived. 

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The botched shooting happened a day after Murdaugh was confronted for allegedly stealing funds from the prominent Hampton County personal injury law firm founded by his great-grandfather a century ago. The powerful legal family also enjoyed generations of control over the local prosecutor’s office. 

Maggie and Paul Murdaugh were found shot to death in a double homicide on the family’s same estate nearly one year ago on June 7, 2021, and no arrests have been announced in connection to their murders.