February 24, 2023


Rachel Fiset, a criminal defense lawyer based in Los Angeles, said Friday that generally it was “a terrible idea” for defendants to take the stand, in part because a defendant can run a “huge risk of perjury.”

In Mr. Murdaugh’s case, Ms. Fiset said that “he runs a huge risk of incriminating himself in all of the other crimes for which he is charged.” Despite the risk, Ms. Fiset said that she believed Mr. Murdaugh decided to testify because it would give him a chance to “personalize his story.”

“He is a skilled lawyer who thought he could tell this story best in his own words,” Ms. Fiset surmised, adding that he probably wanted to speak to jurors in a manner that would resonate with them.

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