Officials in California said that an attorney with the Orange County Public Defender’s office died on Saturday while traveling to Mexico to celebrate his one-year wedding anniversary with his wife.
According to county public defender Martin Schwarz’s statement to The Orange County Register, 33-year-old associate public defender Elliot D. Blair passed away in Rosarito Beach, a well-known resort community close to Mexico’s northern border.
Blair’s death was not immediately known, but according to a GoFundMe set up on his family’s behalf, he was the victim of “a terrible crime.”
Another employee of the public defender’s office, Annie Rodriguez, penned the page’s introduction: “Elliot was recognized as a patient and caring advocate.” “He was the best of us and was adored by many people in our firm and the legal community in Orange County. We are devastated.
His wife, a woman named Kim who was mentioned on the fundraising website, was uninvolved in the incident. According to Rodriguez, she also worked as a public defender.
The depth of his affection for Kim cannot be adequately expressed, Rodriguez continued. Kim’s heart is broken because “Kim was his life.”
On Sunday, Kim and Blair’s other family members were negotiating the return of his remains to the United States.
According to a report in Spanish published by Noticias B.C. in Rosarito, Blair died after falling from a hotel’s fourth-floor balcony at the Las Rocas Resort and Spa. According to a police report on the event, when municipal officials arrived on the site at around 1 a.m. on Saturday, they discovered Blair lying face-down and not breathing.
Schwarz referred to Blair as a “devoted husband, excellent person, and a fantastic lawyer who committed his life to serve his clients and helping the county’s most vulnerable” who started working for the public defender’s office as soon as he passed the bar in 2017.
Schwarz added that he was “working with local and federal officials” to learn more about the issue because the Mexican government had only recently begun to contact Blair’s family about it.
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