On Friday, Magen Hall finds out what evidence the state of Louisiana has on her in the Patrick Murphy murder case.
Hall appears in Orleans Parish Criminal District Court today as the Discovery phase of the Patrick Murphy murder case gets underway.
The defendant Hall faces mandatory life in prison if she’s found guilty of second-degree murder in the death of Murphy. She also faces armed robbery and obstruction of justice charges. Hall’s been in prison since March 3 after turning herself in to authorities.
In the early morning hours of Feb. 28, Hall and Murphy allegedly hooked up in a prostitute-john relationship in New Orleans. Murphy was in New Orleans on vacation with his wife at the time. They reportedly just came from Arizona on a business trip.
Hall and Murphy went to the seedy Empress Hotel that night. She checked in to the hotel using her ID but Murphy allegedly paid for the room. Just a few hours later, Hall left the hotel but Murphy didn’t. Hours later, housekeeping staff at the Empress Hotel found Murphy dead in the room the pair allegedly rented for the night.
What We Know in the Patrick Murphy Murder Case
We don’t know too many details in the Patrick Murphy murder case. The most information we got so far happened at the preliminary hearing. That’s when we learned Hall allegedly stabbed Murphy three times on the front of his body, including one stab wound in his neck.
That’s the evidence provided by New Orleans homicide detective Patrick Guidry at that hearing.
Prior to that, we know that witnesses inside the hotel the night of the killing say they heard a loud commotion and yelling coming from the Hall-Murphy room. Allegedly the last thing anyone heard was Hall yelling, “Get in the bathroom!”
Since being booked on second-degree murder charges, attorneys for Hall have worked to get her bond reduced and charges reduced.
So far, they’ve not had any luck with that.
However, attorney John Fuller, representing Hall has said that Murphy’s wounds on the front of his body show proof that this killing wasn’t pre-meditated. Further, he’s said “stay tuned” to local reporters in New Orleans on if there’s more to tell in this story.
In numerous attempts to reach Fuller, The Canary received very limited response. From our last Facebook Messenger conversation, Fuller simply replied “Cool” to us when we let him know how to reach us with a statement. In a call to his office, someone answering the phone number listed online for him said he was “in meetings” at the time.
What’s Discovery in a Murder Trial?
So, what can we expect from Friday’s court proceedings? During the discovery phase of a murder trial, the prosecution must present the evidence it has in the case. Hall and her attorney get to see what Louisiana has on her.
That likely includes much of the evidence gathered from the room at the Empress, and possibly any proof that they communicated prior to going to that room.
The state is under no obligation to tell the defense how it would use this evidence. In fact, it doesn’t have to use the evidence at all.
But Hall could get a good sense of what she’s up against in the Patrick Murphy murder case.
Discovery in any trial is a reciprocal process. Just like Hall gets to see all the evidence against her, the state has a right to see the evidence the defense has in the case, too.