10 Uplifting Facts About Judge Clifton Newman: Net Worth, Salary, Son, Children, Wife, Education, Age, Wiki, Bio

Judge Clifton Newman from South Carolina Circuit Courts sentenced Alex Murdaugh to life in prison – His biography facts are explored below…

The judge who sentenced Alex Murdaugh on Friday to life in prison for killing his wife and son has earned attention and plaudits for his even-handed demeanor throughout the trial and for his dressing-down of the once-prominent lawyer just before he sent him to prison.

Huge respect for the judge! He lost his son in the middle of this trial. I can’t imagine how it must feel to lose your son while at the same time presiding over a case where another man killed his.

Judge Clifton Newman has got the attention of everyone who was keened from the Alex Murdaugh trial through to his life in prison sentencing and now many are willing to learn more about him. In fact, he has an interesting family and educational background. TheVibely has gathered 10 untold facts about Judge Clifton Newman that you must know.

Profile Summary

Celebrated Name:Clifton Newman
Net Worth:$2 million (estimated)
Profession:Judge of the South Carolina Circuit Court
Full Real Name:Clifton B. Newman
Birthday:November 7, 1951
Age:71 years old (as of 2022)
Birthplace:Kingstree, South Carolina
Education:Cleveland State University (BA) 
Cleveland-Marshall College of Law (JD)
Wife:Patricia Newman
Children:4 Kids namely Jocelyn, Kellee, Corwyn, and Brian.
Assumed office:May 24, 2000
Appointed by:South Carolina General Assembly
Clifton Newman is a famous judge known for presiding in high-profile trials.

1. Who is Judge Clifton Newman?

Clifton B. Newman is an American attorney and at-large judge of the South Carolina Circuit Court. He has served as a judge since his election by the state’s general assembly in 2000. In 2021, he was reelected to a final fourth term.

Clifton B. Newman is famously known for presiding over several high-profile trials, including the trials of Michael SlagerNathaniel Rowland, and Alex Murdaugh.

In 2023, the world got to know of Judge Clifton Newman during Alex Murdaugh’s case. For more than six weeks, the trial of Alex Murdaugh progressed quickly — despite the media mob, a Covid outbreak among the jurors, and even a bomb threat. At the center of the trial was Clifton B. Newman, 71, who served out his fourth and final term as a judge with the South Carolina Circuit Court.

Known for his no-nonsense ways and his methodical demeanor, Newman rarely gave any window into what he was thinking during the proceedings — until the post-conviction hearing where he sentenced Murdaugh to two consecutive life terms for the murders of his wife, Maggie, and son, Paul.

Judge Clifton Newman
Judge Clifton Newman comes from Kingstree, S.C., United States.

2. How old is Judge Clifton Newman?

Newman was born on November 7, 1951, in Newman was born in Kingstree, South Carolina, United States — just 93 miles away from the courthouse in Walterboro. This puts the renowned judge’s age at 71 years old (as of 2022) as he will turn 72 in the coming November 2023.

Judge Clifton Newman was born to a reverend and a domestic worker.

3. Who are Judge Clifton Newman’s parents?

Newman was the first person in his family to be born in a hospital. The South Carolina native was born to his parents Reverend Dr. Marion L. Newman, Sr., and Alice Singleton Newman. When he was 3 years old, his mother moved to New York to take a job as a domestic worker for a Columbia University professor’s family, leaving him in the care of his grandparents and an aunt. For his dad, he was a reverend.

Newman is the nephew of civil rights activist Isaiah DeQuincey Newman. He attends a local Methodist Church where he is chairperson of the administrative council. As a hobby, he enjoys restoring houses and has received historical preservation awards for this work.

Judge Clifton Newman and his wife Patricia have four kids.

4. Who is Judge Clifton Newman’s wife?

Newman is married to Patricia. Per The Sun, the two met while still students at Cleveland-Marshall College of Law. The couple started making a family following their graduation and how they are a family of 6. The outlet reports that Newman and his family currently live in Columbia, South Carolina after relocating from Ohio to cut short the long distances their kids would have to commute in order to attend integrated schools.

Judge Clifton Newman’s daughter Jocelyn is a circuit court judge, following in her father’s footsteps.

5. How many children does Judge Clifton Newman have?

Clifton Newman and his wife Patricia have four children together; two daughters and two sons whose names are Jocelyn, Kellee, Corwyn, and Brian.

Newman’s daughter Jocelyn Newman is also a circuit court judge. Newman’s son, Brian DeQuincey Newman was the youngest serving Columbia city councilman until his death (cardiac arrest) on January 3, 2023.

Newman’s 40-year-old son, Brian, died just weeks before the Murdaugh trial would pull Newman away from his home for more than a month. Brian Newman, a former Columbia city councilman, died of a cardiac issue, according to The State newspaper in Columbia.

On Friday, as the judge handed down Murdaugh’s sentence for killing his own son, he added a small extra touch of emotions from the tragic passing of his son.

“For the murder of Paul Murdaugh, whom you probably loved so much, I sentence you to prison for murdering him for the rest of your natural life,” Newman said.

Judge Clifton Newman's son
Judge Clifton Newman’s son Brian has died of a cardiac issue at age 40.

6. Where did Judge Clifton Newman attend school?

Newman grew up in South Carolina’s rural Williamsburg County where he attended racially segregated schools, The Post and Courier reported in a profile of the judge last year.

Newman graduated from high school as his class valedictorian in 1969, a year before his local school district desegregated. In high school, he played the role of a lawyer from New York City in a play based on a landmark 1954 U.S. Supreme Court school desegregation case, an experience that helped propel him into a career in law.

“To come from a rural community, a farming community, and to go from that scenario to playing the role of a lawyer was quite inspiring,” Newman told the American Bar Association in 2017.

After earning an undergraduate degree from Cleveland State University and graduating from Cleveland-Marshall College of Law, Newman began practicing law in Cleveland. He returned to South Carolina in 1982 and started a private law practice.

Clifton Newman showed a top-notch profession during Alex Murdaugh’s trial.

7. When was Clifton Newman appointed as a judge?

Soft-spoken yet firm in his courtroom oversight, Judge Clifton Newman, a resident of Columbia, Newman, as an at-large judge of the South Carolina Circuit Courts can preside in any jurisdiction. The General Assembly elected him to the judgeship on 24 May 2000 and reelected him in 2021 to a term that expires in 2027.

Newman served as a defense attorney, a civil practitioner, and a prosecutor before 2000 when the state General Assembly elected him to serve as a Circuit Court judge.

“I’ve run the gamut, as far as handling all aspects of the law,” Newman told the ABA.

Clifton Newman sentenced Alex Murdaugh to life in prison
Clifton Newman sentenced Alex Murdaugh to life in prison in February 2023 for the murder of his wife and son.

8. What did Judge Clifton Newman say to Alex Murdaugh?

Judge Clifton Newman addressed Murdaugh directly during roughly 20 minutes of comments that ranged from invoking the memories of the defendant’s slain son Paul and wife Maggie to lamenting what he described as attacks on the credibility of the state’s justice system during the trial. He noted that Murdaugh came from a prominent family of lawyers in the area and that a portrait of his grandfather, a former prosecutor, once hung in the courthouse where he was tried – until Newman had it removed to promote a fair trial.

Among the most poignant moments came when Newman spoke to Murdaugh about his wife and son. Referring to the shooting deaths and lies Murdaugh admitted telling throughout the investigation, the judge said: “Within your own soul, you have to deal with that. And I know you have to see Paul and Maggie during the night time when you’re attempting to go to sleep and I’m sure they come and visit you.”

“All day, and every night,” said Murdaugh, who maintained his innocence during the sentencing hearing.

“And they will continue to do so and reflect on the last time they looked you in the eyes,” the judge then replied.

The judge also remarked on how the case was an “assault on the integrity of the judicial system in our state,” referring to the prominent position that Murdaugh’s family held as longtime prosecutors in the area – along with the defense team’s efforts to impugn investigative methods throughout the trial.

“As a member of the legal community — and a well-known member of the legal community — you practiced law before me, and we’ve seen each other on various occasions throughout the years,” he said.

9. What other cases has Clifton Newman presided in?

Aside from Alex Murdaugh’s sentencing, Clifton Newman has served on the bench for more than two decades and has presided over a number of high-profile trials.

In 2016, Newman presided over the case of Michael Slager who was charged with shooting Walter Scott. The case, centered on cellphone video of the shooting taken by a bystander, was so racially charged Newman needed protection from the State Law Enforcement Division. The trial ended in a hung jury, but Slater was convicted later in federal court.

In 2019, he presided over the case of Nathaniel David Rowland, 27, who was convicted of murdering Samantha Josephson, 21.

Josephson was picked up in the Five Points district by Rowland, who Josephson thought was an Uber driver. Testimony showed he stabbed her about 120 times in the vehicle and dumped her body near his family home, authorities said.

In that trial, Newman upbraided Rowland’s mother after her son was found guilty for claiming he was innocent.

“I am not going to hear any claim of what he did or didn’t do,” Newman said. “He is guilty of murder. He is guilty of kidnapping. He is guilty of possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime. And if you had any testimony that you wanted to give for the jury to consider, the trial was the time to do that. I’m not listening to any claim of what he did not do. You are not a witness.”

Judge Clifton Newman has a sizable fortune.

10. What is Judge Clifton Newman’s net worth?

Clifton Newman is an American attorney and at-large judge of the South Carolina Circuit Court who has a current net worth of $2 million. He has served as a judge since his election by the state’s general assembly in 2000.

ZipRecruiter estimates that a Court Judge in South Carolina makes an average salary of $54,084 per year, an income of $4,507 per month, a revenue of $1,040 in a week, and gets paid $26.00 per hour.

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