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Politics: Murdaugh Murder Trial Clerk Accused Of Giving Herself Nearly

POLITICS: Murdaugh murder trial clerk accused of giving herself nearly $10,000 using child support funds and spending tax dollars on picnic tables, food, gifts, ‘Jagermeister’ and ‘Smirnoff Ice’

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The post Murdaugh murder trial clerk accused of giving herself nearly $10,000 using child support funds and spending tax dollars on picnic tables, food, gifts, ‘Jagermeister’ and ‘Smirnoff Ice’ first appeared on USSA News | The Tea Party’s Front Page.. Visit USSANews.com.

Main image: Alex Murdaugh stands during a break in his trial for murder at the Colleton County Courthouse on Friday, February 24, 2023 (Joshua Boucher/The State/Pool); Becky Hill during a press conference in front of the same courthouse on March 25, 2024 (Screengrab via WLTX).

The former South Carolina court clerk whose actions during the double murder trial of Alex Murdaugh very nearly resulted in a do-over, has been accused of 76 ethical violations by a state oversight board.

Rebecca “Becky” H. Hill was notified this month of her charges — and an upcoming hearing — by the State Ethics Commission in two separate notices of hearing detailing, briefly, each count against her.

Ethics officials accuse the embattled ex-elected official of improperly using the trappings of her office for personal and business-related financial gain and disclosing confidential information for financial gain.

The allegations are documented in a 22-page notice and three-page notice, based on two separate complaints, issued earlier this month.

Hill used her official position to give herself several bonuses totaling in excess of $9,800, using money earmarked as child support funds, according to one of the filings. The remainder of the financial allegations appear to suggest the money Hill obtained was improperly drawn from a different — non-child support-based — pot.

She also directed a total of $750 to a business called Community Innovations, “with which she is associated,” one notice says.

The majority of the allegations concern reimbursements for smaller expenditures — some as low as $50.87 — but which also totaled nearly $10,000 all together, according to the filings.

Breaking down the laundry list of small reimbursements, the charges include spending on “meals for herself” and the occasional guest totaling around $1,000. Another $3,000 or so was allegedly spent on food for employees. Additionally, investigators say Hill spent some $3,000 on “Easter goodies,” “Mother’s Day gifts,” “Father’s Day gifts,” “birthday gifts and meals,” “Valentine’s Day gifts,” and non-holiday gifts for courthouse staff, judges, and prosecutors.

While a great number of the alleged expenditures are general — like meals — or slightly more than general — like a specific employee’s birthday party reimbursement — some of the descriptions include more specific purchases like “appetizers, soft drinks, Jagermeister, and Limoncello,” “dog food, dog bones, and a dog bed,” and “Smirnoff Ice.”

Hill also allegedly reimbursed herself to the tune of over $2,500 for things like picnic tables, office furniture, an office cooler, and other “office decorations and supplies,” according to one of the complaints.

More Law&Crime coverage: Courthouse clerk who wrote book on Alex Murdaugh trial lawyers up after convicted killer claims she had an ax to grind and coached jurors

Three of the complaints are not about direct financial perfidy, however, but relate back to the theme of personal aggrandizement.

Two of those three complaints allege, verbatim, that Hill “provided an individual with whom she was associated confidential information in the form of a photograph of an inmate in the Colleton County courthouse holding cell, to promote the sale of a book.”

The other complaint alleges the former official “filmed a promotional segment with the Walterboro Chamber of Commerce President for her book in her office at the Colleton County Courthouse.”

The tell-all memoir of the longest criminal trial in South Carolina history was the impetus for several fractures in Hill’s career.

The day after Christmas last year, Hill admitted to plagiarizing a passage from her self-published, co-authored book.

That book, plagiarism aside, is part of the basis for the secondary investigation into leveraging her elected office. In March, state police interviewed co-author Neil Gordon — who discovered the plagiarism and confronted Hill about it before unpublishing the book — about whether or not Hill attended “book signings” or other such events while she was on the public clock, according to a statement.

More Law&Crime coverage: ‘She pees in every corner of the courtroom’: Fireworks expected at Alex Murdaugh new trial status conference

In September 2023, defense attorneys accused Hill of engaging in several instances of jury tampering during Murdaugh’s murder trial — alleging some of her untoward behavior was done with an eye toward her eventual authorial turn.

“Ms. Hill pressured the jurors to reach a quick verdict, telling them from the outset of their deliberations that it ‘shouldn’t take them long,’” one filing read. “Ms. Hill did these things to secure for herself a book deal and media appearances that would not happen in the event of a mistrial. Ms. Hill betrayed her oath of office for money and fame.”

Other, related scandals quickly rose to the surface over Hill’s behavior during and after the double murder trial. She is also currently under an “actve” investigation into the jury tampering allegations, the South Carolina Law Enforcement division said earlier this year.

Hill resigned from her position as the clerk of court for Colleton County, South Carolina on March 25.

A hearing on her ethics charges is currently slated for Dec. 19.

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The post Murdaugh murder trial clerk accused of giving herself nearly $10,000 using child support funds and spending tax dollars on picnic tables, food, gifts, ‘Jagermeister’ and ‘Smirnoff Ice’ first appeared on Law & Crime.

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Author: Colin Kalmbacher


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The post Murdaugh murder trial clerk accused of giving herself nearly $10,000 using child support funds and spending tax dollars on picnic tables, food, gifts, ‘Jagermeister’ and ‘Smirnoff Ice’ first appeared on USSA News | The Tea Party’s Front Page.. Visit USSANews.com.



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