Dan Markel, Toronto-born law prof, dead after shot in Florida home

A Florida State University law professor who was born in Toronto died in hospital after he was found with a gunshot wound in his Tallahassee home.

Police found Markel, 41, with gunshot wound on Friday in Tallahassee

Florida police found legal scholar Dan Markel in his Tallahassee home with a gunshot wound on Friday. The Toronto-born father of two died in hospital the following day. (Sean Rossman/Tallahassee Democrat)

Toronto-born Dan Markel, a prominent Florida State University law professor, author and blogger, was shot in his home over the weekend and died in hospital.

Officers were called to Markel's home on Friday morning, where he was found with an apparent gunshot wound, the Tallahassee Democrat reported. 

Toronto-born Dan Markel was a well-known law professor, author and blogger. (Florida State University)
Markel, a 41-year-old father of two, was taken to hospital and died Saturday.

Florida State acknowledged the shooting, confirming the shooting on fsunews.com and saying he died around 11 a.m. ET.

“I am deeply saddened to report that our colleague Dan Markel passed away early this morning,” said FSU Law School dean Donald Weidner in the release. “As many of you are already aware, Dan was fatally injured in a shooting incident that took place yesterday and which is still under active investigation by local authorities."

In a press release Monday, the Tallahasee Police Department said that at this time, Markel appears to have been the intended target of the shooting. 

"The initial investigation has provided no indication that this case is connected to a burglary or robbery and investigators are assuring residents there is no evidence this was a random act," the release said.

No suspects or motives have been identified, but police have set up a tip line for information on the case. Anyone with information is asked to call (850) 891-4462.

'An incalculable loss'

Markel attended the Harvard University and University of Cambridge before eventually becoming a professor at Florida State's law school. 

He appeared as a commentator on radio shows and wrote opinion pieces for The Atlantic, Slate and the New York Times. He was also a contributor on the academic law blog PrawfsBlawg.

"We are stunned and bereaved by his loss, and our thoughts go to his two little boys, who were precious to him, and to his family," read a recent post on PrawfsBlawg.

A memorial was held in Tallahassee on Sunday, attended by Markel's colleagues.

"Today there was a strong feeling of how much he's going to be missed," said FSU law graduate Jennifer Dreyer. 

"It's an incalculable loss for the legal academic community, and we're all very sad," said fellow FSU law professor Wayne Logan.

A funeral is planned for later this week in Toronto.

Florida State also announced there will be a special memorial event at the law school this fall.