COLLETON COUNTY, S.C. (WSAV) — A passenger in the Lowcountry boat crash that killed Mallory Beach says there was a conspiracy to take the blame off of Paul Murdaugh — and pin it on him.
Now, lawyers want to question several law enforcement officers about the investigation.
“Where the f— is Mallory!!” the teen’s friends asked during a 911 call that fateful night. Connor Cook was on the boat that February night in 2019 when it hit a piling at a high rate of speed – flinging Mallory Beach into the waters of Archers Creek.
Her body was found seven days later.
Now a civil petition filed in Richland County by Cook uses words like Collusion and Civil Conspiracy. Claiming there was a “campaign” to “cloud” the investigation – “disseminate false information to the community” and make it look like Cook was behind the wheel, not Murdaugh.
Cook’s case is based on several depositions from several Department of Natural Resources and law enforcement officers in Renee Beach’s civil case against the Murdaugh family and Parkers. It also claims that evidence is “missing.”
No sobriety tests were done at the scene on any of the underage people in the boat that night.
One deposition said Paul Murdaugh was overheard on the phone saying “we were running hard and hit the Lemon Island/Calawassie Bridge. Mallory is gone and we can’t find her.”
The depositions show Paul and the other underage teens did not want to talk about who was driving to investigators. Paul saying at one point, “why was this important with Mallory missing.”
And one officer said when he went to talk to Paul in the hospital – Alex and Randolph Murdaugh – Paul’s father and grandfather stopped him – telling him “Paul’s not saying anything else. You are talking to us now – I’m his lawyer.”
Cook’s lawyers are asking to question five officers about what they call an “inappropriate investigation” – the goal to gather evidence to eventually file a civil lawsuit.
One of those – Cpl. John Keener- in his deposition said, if he was investigating this case today, “there’s a lot of things I would have done differently.”
The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) is still looking for any information leading to a suspect in the Murdaugh murders. 52-year old Maggie and 22-year old Paul Murdaugh were shot and killed at their Colleton County home back on June 7.
Those with information can call SLED’s 24-hour tip line 803-896-2605 or Crimestoppers of the Lowcountry 843-554-1111.