Death of Alex Murdaugh's HOUSEKEEPER now being investigated after no autopsy for 'trip and fall' tragedy

Death of Alex Murdaugh's HOUSEKEEPER now being investigated after no autopsy for 'trip and fall' tragedy

September 16, 2021

INVESTIGATORS are probing the 2018 “trip-and-fall” death of legal dynasty heir Alex Murdaugh’s housekeeper Gloria Satterfield and taking a closer look at the “handling of her estate.”

“The decedent’s death was not reported to the Coroner at the time, nor was an autopsy performed,” wrote Ampton County Coroner Angela Topper. “On the death certificate the manner of death was ruled “Natural,” which is inconsistent with injuries sustained in a trip and fall accident.”


The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) agreed, announcing on Wednesday the coroner’s concerns merited reopening the cause of Satterfield’s death back on Feb. 26, 2018, and taking a closer look at what happened after she died with her money and valuables.

“Based upon a request from the Hampton County Coroner Earlier today, as well as information gathered during the course of our other ongoing investigations involving Alex Murdaugh, SLED is opening a criminal investigation into the death of Gloria Satterfield and the handling of her estate,” a release confirmed. 

Murdaugh is turning himself into authorities “on multiple charges,” according to FOX Carolina reporter Cody Alcorn.

The Sun has reached out to Murdaugh’s attorney for independent confirmation.

The decision to determine how Satterfield, 57, died came one day after Murdaugh stood accused of trying to cash in a $10million insurance policy by paying a hitman to assassinate him after the double homicide of his wife and son.

Murdaugh is an attorney and heir to Peters, Murdaugh, Parker, Eltzroth & Derrick – one of South Carolina’s most affluent legal dynasties that was founded by his great-grandfather back in 1910, according to the firm's website.

His biography details that Murdaugh also serves as a "part-time prosecutor for the 14th district" – which includes Colleton County.

The 53-year-old was rushed to the hospital and has since admitted himself into rehab.

It came one day after Murdaugh, 53, was ousted from his law firm for allegedly misappropriating millions in funds.


Satterfield had served as the Murdaugh family housekeeper and nanny for nearly 25 years when she reportedly took a mysterious spill that caused a fatal brain injury following inside the Murdaugh family home. 

She held on for several weeks at Trident Medical Center before passing away, according to her obituary.

She was remembered as a tennis aficionado who also “loved kids and her favorite color was purple.”  

“Most of all, she will be remembered for her laughter and her outgoing personality,” the obituary noted.

After the incident, Satterfield’s estate squared away a $500,000 wrongful death settlement for “a trip and fall accident,” WTOC reported.

“My client has not been paid one single dime since this was settled in 2020,” said Eric Bland, an attorney who represents Satterfield’s estate. 

“My job is to get information and find out why these boys didn’t get any money when there was a settlement.”

SLED said that hit had opened a criminal investigation inter Satterfield's death based on a request from the Hampton County Coroner, as well as 

Murdaugh settled a wrongful death claim with the housekeeper's family for $500,000 in 2018. 

However, Satterfield's family sued Murdaugh, Wednesday claiming he had not paid out 'one single dime' of the settlement. 


SLED’s pursuit to find out more about how the Murdaugh family’s nanny and housekeeper died comes after authorities have been circling the legal scion over his part in the untimely deaths of his wife Maggie and son Paul who were were shot dead at the family's hunting lodge on June 7. 

The affluent lawyer told a 911 dispatcher that he came home to find the bullet-riddled bodies of Maggie Murdaugh, 52, their 22-year-old son Paul, lying in one of his kennels.

“I been up to it now – it’s bad,” a distressed Murdaugh said during the 10:07pm call on June 7 with a Colleton County dispatcher.

The unsolved case has dragged on for three months without any arrest.


On Sept. 4, Alex Murdaugh was shot in the head while he was changing a tire outside of Charleston, South Carolina. 

Authorities nabbed Curtis Edward Smith, 61, for the shooting and booked into the Colleton County Detention Center. 

Officials now say Murdaugh allegedly was in cahoots with Smith to carry out the assassination of himself in an effort to help his son collect $10million life insurance policy.

Authorities say Murdaugh gave Smith a gun and instructed him to fatally shoot him in the head.

Investigators said Murdaugh provided a statement to SLED on Monday and confessed to the shooting scheme so his son could get a "death benefit beneficiary."

Smith apparently failed to murder Murdaugh.

The alleged hired hitman took aim on Murdaugh while he was on the 15000 block of Salkehatchie Rd.

But Murdaugh only suffered from a graze wound to the head.

SLED investigators contend in the incident report that after Smith shot Murdaugh in the roadway, he drove to an unknown area to get rid of the gun.

Smith is now facing assisted suicide, assault and battery of a high aggravated nature, pointing and presenting a firearm, insurance fraud, and conspiracy to commit insurance fraud charges.


The questionable death of Scatterfield is the third mysterious homicide case attached to the Murdaugh family, which gained national attention following the double murder of Paul and Maggie.   

The Murdaugh family was already under duress as son Paul Murdaugh was facing charges he was under the influence in the 2019 boating death of teenager Mallory Beach.

Authorities accused Paul of killing a passenger in a boat that he crashed while heavily intoxicated.

Police have also investigated the family for possible ties to the 2015 death of gay teen Stephen Smith, which was ruled a hit-and-run, though no suspects have ever been named or charged.

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