A Florida lawyer was found dead in his jail cell less than a month after a grand jury indicted him for allegedly killing his father who had accused him of stealing $450,000 from a family trust fund.
The Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office confirmed the death of Brandon Labiner who was found dead in his cell at the county jail on Wednesday where he was being held without bond.
Labiner had been charged with premeditated first-degree murder with a firearm, a felony, and tampering and fabricating physical evidence, a third-degree felony. His next court date was set for 18 November, according to court records.
If convicted, Labiner would have faced a maximum of life in prison without the possibility of parole, or the death penalty for the murder charge. The second charge is punishable by up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine. He had pleaded not guilty to the charges in July.
Public defender, Valentin Rodriguez, said he was saddened to hear of his client’s passing.
“He had such a promising career,” the attorney said in a statement. “The tragedies of 2023 for the Labiner family are simply unbelievable.”
Per an arrest affidavit, authorities arrived at a parking garage located underneath an office building in July after someone called 911 reporting that an individual had been shot. A witness told officers that four gunshots were heard at around 3.55pm.
A man was observed inside the parking garage lying in a pool of blood with several gunshot wounds, according to the affidavit. A witness said she suspected Labiner of shooting the man, who is assumed to be his father, 68-year-old Paul Labiner.
Officials have not confirmed the identity of the victim, citing Marsy’s Law, a law that provides certain protections for victims of crimes.
The father and son had reportedly been in a legal battle regarding their law firm, with the suspect also having lost a child and was going through a divorce.
On July 3, two days after the shooting, authorities announced Labiner had been arrested for an active warrant out of Broward County. The man had initially barricaded himself inside a building at 900 N Federal Highway when police tried to make contact.
Surveillance footage from within the area where the murder took place pointed officials to Labiner, a news release said.
In a filing in September 2022, the suspect’s father initiated a complaint with the Florida bar to have his son’s law license revoked after he accused his son of stealing nearly $450,000 from his mother’s trust fund.
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