WALTERBORO, S.C. (WCBD) – On a normal day, the city of Walterboro is quiet and quaint with just a few thousand people calling it home, but the next few weeks will be anything but normal as the Alex Murdaugh murder trial gets underway
The Colleton County Courthouse and surrounding areas of the city were swarmed with dozens of local and national news outlets on Monday for day one of the trial.
City officials told News 2 last week they were expecting anywhere from 500 to 1,500 people in town during the proceedings. At least 300 of those people are part of the media.
“It’s very interesting. It is completely different than what we’re used to, but we’ll make the best of it,” said Jessica Burdick who co-owns a local store called Twig.
People who work at small businesses, like Burdick, are warm and welcoming of the newcomers. Some, however, just wish it was under different circumstances.
“On one hand its good, but I wish it was for a different cause. I wish it was for a happy cause and not what we’re going through here. You know, no town wants this type of publicity,” said Teresa Busbee, the Manager of Dixie Downtown.
The trial isn’t just attracting media. People who have been watching the case unfold from home are also in town to witness the next part of the saga. Joanna Beckert travelled from Greenville.
“I think I’ll come back even though we weren’t able to get in here today because they’re picking the jurors, they wouldn’t let us in. But I think that I would like to come back and try to get in and actually sit in the courthouse and witness and observe,” said Beckert.
A limited number of seats will be open inside the courthouse for those wanting to watch the trial. City officials told News 2 they will not allow anyone to line up until 8:00 a.m. each day for those seats.