In a murder trial, the often overlooked but crucial role lies with the investigators who meticulously piece together the puzzle of a crime. The high-profile trial of Alex Murdaugh, featured in NBC’s ‘Dateline: The Murdaugh Murders: Inside The Investigation,’ underscored the significance of these investigators in ensuring justice was served. The documentary delves into the intricate work and pivotal roles played by the lead investigators. Now, as the spotlight dims and the case concludes, the question arises: where are these investigators today, and how have their lives been transformed by their involvement in a case that thrust them into the public eye?
Britt Dove Continues to be Digital Forensic Examiner
Britt Dove played a pivotal role as the lead digital forensic examiner in the murder investigation of Maggie and Paul Murdaugh. Tasked with examining Maggie’s phone, Dove utilized Advanced Logical processing to extract crucial information. Collaborating with the Secret Service, Dove’s team successfully unlocked and accessed data from Paul’s phone. The breakthrough came when Dove discovered an incriminating video on Paul’s device. This footage, recorded just moments before the murders of Maggie and Paul, captured the voice of Alex Murdaugh, contradicting his initial claim of not being present at the crime scene. The video emerged as a critical piece of evidence, ultimately contributing to building a strong case against Alex. In the ‘Dateline’ episode, Dove revealed the meticulous process of listening to the video multiple times to ensure the accuracy of the information uncovered.
Since the conclusion of Alex Murdaugh’s trial in March 2023, Britt Dove has maintained his role as the Digital Forensic Examiner at the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division. Specializing in cybercrime investigations, cyber forensics, mobile device forensics, and criminal investigation, Dove continues to bring his expertise to the forefront. A graduate of the University of South Carolina and the FBI Carolina Command College, Dove has held the position of Lieutenant at SLED since 2008 and currently serves as the Supervisor of the Computer Crime Unit. With a background that includes roles as an investigator at the West Columbia Police Department and a Deputy in the Richland County Sheriff’s Office, Dove currently resides in Irmo, South Carolina.
David Owen Works as a SLED Agent Even Today
David Owen, as the lead investigator in the Murdaugh murders case, played an important role from the very beginning. Conducting the first interview with Alex Murdaugh, Owen’s interactions with the suspect extended throughout the trial. His involvement included reviewing the third and final interview conducted by the South Carolina Law Enforcement Department, during which he directly questioned Alex about the murders of his wife and son. In response, Alex denied any involvement and claimed ignorance about who committed the crime. The turning point in the investigation came when Britt Dove presented the incriminating video evidence from Paul’s phone. Owen expressed his excitement, seeing it as an opportunity to substantiate his belief that Alex had been untruthful in their interactions.
During the trial, David Owen took the stand as a prosecution witness, testifying that he could not eliminate Alex Murdaugh as a suspect during cross-examination. He maintained that he couldn’t identify any other viable suspects. However, Owen faced a rigorous cross-examination from the defense, challenging the accuracy of his statements before the jury. Owen acknowledged his mistake, admitted that some of his remarks were untrue, and offered an apology. In the ‘Dateline’ episode, Owen reflected on his role in the case. He recounted accusing Alex of the murders during the final interview after the video discovery. Owen revealed an unrecorded interaction with Alex, sharing, “What’s not on video is, I had to escort him out of the building and he turned around and he says, ‘David, I understand why you have to ask these questions. I want to thank you for doing your job.’ And he shook my hand.”
David Owen continues his dedicated service as an agent for the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) after the conclusion of the Murdaugh trial. While he maintains a low public profile, Owen’s commitment to ensuring justice and upholding the principles of law enforcement undoubtedly persisted. In the realm of law enforcement, where navigating complex cases requires both skill and ethical fortitude, individuals like Owen play a crucial role in maintaining public trust and safeguarding the principles of justice.