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Subpoenas and Warrants Issued in Stephen Smith Investigation, South Carolina AG Gives 'Full Briefing' On Murder Case

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May 28 2023, Published 11:30 a.m. ET

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Detectives have been making progress in their investigation into Stephen Smith‘s death and have served new warrants and subpoenas connected to the case, RadarOnline.com has learned.

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The 19-year-old was found dead along Sandy Run Road on July 8, 2015, in what was initially labeled as a hit-and-run. After evidence was uncovered during an investigation into the Murdaugh family murders, authorities reclassified Smith's death as a homicide.

Smith's mother's attorney, Eric Bland, said that the investigation has been steadfast and that police have told him that investigators have recently met with the state's Attorney General to give them the "full briefing" on the case.

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In the latest investigative report obtained by Court TV, detectives from Hampton County, South Carolina, warrants and subpoenas are being issued. Still, none of the names of those served have been made public.

"It would not surprise me that over the next couple months, we would hear something regarding Stephen Smith and the decision South Carolina reached that he was killed by homicide," Bland said.

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As RadarOnline reported, Smith’s body was exhumed for a second autopsy in April. Detectives have noted that the 19-year-old did not have injuries consistent with a car accident.

Since opening the case back up, the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) established a tip line and is offering a reward of $35,000 for information that leads to an arrest and conviction in the case. Bland said that police have received and investigated approximately 40 tips to date.

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The investigation into Smith's mysterious death was reopened after evidence was reportedly uncovered in the murders of Maggie and Paul Murdaugh by once-prominent attorney Alex Murdaugh.

SLED has yet to say what the connection between the two investigations is.

The 54-year-old Murdaugh was sentenced to two consecutive life sentences for murders in a sensational trial in March.

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Marc Bickhardt, believed to be the last person to communicate with Smith before his death, told investigators that Smith called to say that he ran out of gas and felt he was being followed before hearing "big mud tires" approaching his friend.

"They're like coming toward him or going past because they sounded loud — and they were getting louder."

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