Client Shoots Lawyer to Death, Turns Gun on Himself

On Dec. 19, after a mediation meeting with his wife,  client Francisco Sanchez, 46, shot to death attorney Patrick White, 42.  According to a colleague, the North Carolina attorney who lost his life in a murder-suicide attempt while attempting to take the shooter’s weapon and defend others was a hero.

Murder-Suicide Case

Patrick White, a personal injury attorney with the illustrious firm Riddle and Brantley, and Sanchez were discovered dead from gunshot wounds at the Goldsboro law office on Monday afternoon. The killing of White by Sanchez, who then shot himself in the head, is thought to have been a murder-suicide, according to the police.

At approximately 9:30 a.m.,  Sanchez and his wife, Crystal Guerrero, arrived at the law office on North Spence Avenue for a mediation that was intended to be routine in a case involving a car accident. All parties, including Sanchez, appeared content with the seven-figure settlement after six hours of mediation, a source posted. 

Guerrero requested a private conversation with her husband around 4 o’clock, which caused White, Riddle, and the mediator to leave the room. Riddle testified that after hearing gunshots and seeing Sanchez approaching him a short while later, he fell backward into his office under the impression that he had been hit.

Sanchez turned toward White after firing twice into an office wall. White reportedly lunged at Sanchez in an attempt to take away his weapon, but was fatally shot while doing so, and asked him to stop. The client was found dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head after a gunshot was reported, and Sanchez was lying beside the lifeless body of White. 

Heroic Act of Lawyer

When describing White’s actions, Riddle was overcome with emotion and several times found himself in tears as he recalled how White had tried to prevent them from being shot.

According to a statement from the law firm, Patrick showed selfless bravery in the face of senseless violence. His brave, decisive action stopped the tragedy in its tracks. The company is highly grateful to the community’s and friends’ outpouring of love and support, according to report.

Tuesday morning, flowers were left outside the legal practice, and at noon, a vigil was held there.