Chaos erupts in Allegheny County courtroom as suspect in Monroeville Mall shooting pleads guilty

ALLEGHENY COUNTY, Pa. — Chaos erupted in an Allegheny County courtroom Monday after detectives stopped a man who tried to attack the suspect in his brother’s death.

”A chair was broken and there was blood, and the desks were everywhere. Chairs were all over the place and people were screaming and running out. It was chaotic. Quite frankly, it was scary,” defense attorney, Casey White, told Channel 11.

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It’s something White has now only seen twice in his long career as a defense attorney: a victim’s family member try to attack a suspect in a courtroom.

It happened Monday, when White and his client Lawrence Murphy showed up for Murphy’s sentencing for shooting and killing Saheed Gayle outside Monroeville Mall in October 2020.

”As the victim’s family was coming into the courtroom, the victim’s twin brother came through the door and took a beeline and went straight toward my client, Lawrence Murphy,” White added.

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Back at the time of the shooting, Gayle’s mother gave us photos of her twin sons, Samai and Saheed. She said they were inseparable.

But Monday, detectives had to step in to stop Samai from harming the man who killed his brother.

”There were three Allegheny County detectives who were sitting in the courtroom. They saw it unfolding, and went and tackled Mr. Gayle’s twin brother. After that, it was chaotic,” White said.

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The Gayle and Murphy families each had more than a dozen supporters there, accompanied by sheriff’s deputies, detectives on the case and witnesses.

”It was a wrestling match between him and three detectives. In the courtroom amongst the spectators, my client’s family, his family,” White said.

After what White said felt like several minutes, detectives were able to get the twin brother, Samai, in custody, and court went on as planned.

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”It was surreal. Standing there watching it, it happened so quickly … it was a surreal event.”

Samai Gayle is facing misdemeanor charges for disorderly conduct.

As for Murphy, he will spend the next 15-30 years behind bars.

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