Family of Mallory Beach, teen killed in Murdaugh boat crash case, announces $15 million settlement with convenience store company

The family of a teenager killed in a crash involving a boat owned by the prominent South Carolina Murdaugh family has settled a wrongful death lawsuit with the convenience store that Paul Murdaugh, then 19, purchased alcohol from the night of the crash.

A “global settlement” for $15 million was reached Sunday with convenience store company Parker’s Kitchen and owner Greg Parker, an attorney for the family of teenager Mallory Beach confirmed to CNN.

“The Beach family believes this settlement will serve as a warning to all the Parker’s of the world, who might make an illegal sale of alcohol to a minor, that they will be held to account for their wrongful conduct if they do,” attorney Mark Tinsley told CNN. “These settlements won’t bring Mallory back, but we hope they do save someone else’s son or daughter.”

The lawsuit claimed that Paul Murdaugh used his older brother’s driver’s license to purchase alcohol from a Parker’s Kitchen convenience store in February 2019, before the boat crash. Police said Paul Murdaugh was drunk when he crashed his father’s boat into a bridge with five friends aboard, tossing Beach into the water. Search teams found her body a week after the crash.

In June 2021, Paul Murdaugh and his mother, Maggie, were shot and killed. His father, attorney Alex Murdaugh, was found guilty of killing Paul and his mother earlier this year and is serving two life sentences for the murders. He is appealing the conviction.

At the time of his murder, Paul Murdaugh was facing charges of boating under the influence causing severe bodily injury and death in the boat crash. Paul Murdaugh had pleaded not guilty and the charges against him were dropped after his death.

With the settlement, the civil trial scheduled to begin next month will be canceled. Alex Murdaugh had been scheduled to be deposed for the trial in the wrongful death case. He was listed as the second primary defendant in the civil suit.

“All of the cases were settled with Parker’s and Mallory Beach’s wrongful death case settled with them for $15 million,” explained Tinsley. “We are winding up the remaining claims against Alex Murdaugh with the court’s receiver who has taken all of his assets.”

The settlement was prompted by two major decisions from a judge just days before, according to an attorney for Parker’s. Last week, a judge denied Parker’s request for its case to be tried separately from Alex Murdaugh and for a change in venue from Hampton County. Parker’s attorneys argued the Murdaugh name had become too toxic in the small community for their clients to get a fair trial.

“It is disappointing that the contents of settlement discussions have been disclosed today counter to the mediation agreement that was signed by all who participated,” said PK Shere, attorney for Parker’s, in a statement to CNN.

“Recently, the court ruled that Parker’s would be tethered to Alex Murdaugh at the upcoming trial. The fact remains that (employee) Tajeeha Cohen made a legal and valid sale, as was determined by (the State Law Enforcement Division).

“This case was never about that legal and valid sale nor was it about the repeated bad decisions that these young adults made that night. For Mark Tinsley, it was all about using the Murdaughs’ bad actions and the unfair law of joint and several liability in South Carolina to make Parker’s pay for a verdict intended to punish the Murdaughs. Given the outsized publicity this case has received, being tethered to a convicted murderer all but ensured Parker’s would not receive a fair trial,” Shere said.

“The application of the joint and several liability law in South Carolina meant that, if Parker’s was found even 1% at fault, it would have paid for the entirety of any verdict rendered against the Murdaugh family,” continued Shere. “The unfairness of that caused Parker’s insurance carriers to resolve these suits to avoid paying the likely award intended to punish Alex Murdaugh.”

“This marks the conclusion of all the boat crash cases. We sincerely hope that all involved parties will find some measure of closure,” Shere said.

The other passengers on the boat at the time of the crash have also settled their claims against Parker’s, according to attorneys.

The Beach family did not settle a separate civil conspiracy lawsuit against Parker, his store, and others that alleges harassment and centers on the public release of sensitive investigation photos, including of Mallory Beach’s body. That suit is ongoing.

For more CNN news and newsletters create an account at