'Lovable and Laid Back' Texas Lawyer Killed in Police Shootout

Michael Schmidt, 47, was killed in police shootout in front of daughter.

January 03, 2014, 2:22 PM

Jan. 3, 2014— -- A Texas lawyer described by a colleague as a "very lovable and laid back" person was fatally shot by police after he barricaded himself in his apartment building hallway with his daughter by his side.

Michael E. Schmidt, 47, a lawyer at the Schmidt Firm in Dallas, reported to an employee at his building early Thursday morning that his apartment was being burglarized, police said. When police arrived at the scene, Schmidt had barricaded himself in an adjacent hallway and began shooting at officers when they tried to speak with him, police said. After officers tried to calm down the situation, they returned fire when Schmidt moved from his barricade towards officers, police said. He was pronounced dead at the scene, according to the Dallas Police Department.

"The suspect's juvenile daughter was at the location with Suspect Schmidt but indications are that she was out of sight of the officers. She was located uninjured after the shooting and was released to the custody of relatives," police said.

His daughter is 11 years old, according to ABC affiliate WFAA.

Schmidt, a personal injury trial attorney, joined his father's firm 24 years ago, according to his bio on the firm's website. His colleagues told ABC News today it's a mystery why this happened.

James Holmes, a fellow attorney at the Schmidt Firm, said he saw Schmidt on Dec. 27, right after he returned from a holiday break.

"He was well rested and very happy. His father, who was in daily contact with him, spoke with him just a few hours before and he was in good spirits and was very happy," Holmes said.

"Michael was a very lovable and laid back guy and was kind and generous," Holmes said. "Anyone would have said that about him before this, he was just a very likable person."

When ABC News reached out to Schmidt's family, his step-mother, Glenna Goodacre, was too upset to comment, only saying that, "He thought someone was robbing him and he ran outside and the police shot him." Schmidt's funeral will be on Monday, Goodacre said.

Police are investigating the incident and the four officers who were involved have been placed on administrative leave as is the custom, according to police.

"We are just really mourning the loss of him," Holmes said.

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