D. Landon White Audience, Fly Fishing & Rules

Landon White
2024 Feature Nominations

“People make mistakes, but a mistake shouldn’t ruin the person’s life or prevent them from later success,” said Landon White of Triangle Criminal Defense Group. “I approach each of my client’s cases on an individual level, define success based on the client’s goals, whether it’s avoiding a conviction, a plea to something less than a felony, or no active time, and then figure out a way to get the client there.”

White practices criminal defense in state and federal court, and handles criminal defense cases from speeding tickets to firstdegree murder. He earned his Juris Doctor from Campbell University School of Law. White joined Triangle Criminal Defense Group in 2014 and manages the firm’s state criminal defense practice. Triangle Criminal Defense Group is a subsidiary of Shanahan Law Group.

A Target Audience

Before enrolling in law school, White had a successful career as a media planner and buyer working on campaigns for clients such as AstroTurf, the Carolina Mudcats, Terminix, and Stihl Power Tools, among others.

“There is crossover between criminal defense and advertising,” he said. “In advertising, you have to understand who your target audience is, what type of message they are receptive to, and how they need to receive the message. Then you present that message to them in a way they can digest and act on.

“As a criminal defense trial attorney, that is essentially what I am doing,” he continued. “Whether it’s a detective, prosecutor, judge or jury, understanding what is important to them allows me to focus my delivery of the facts in a way that is meaningful to them.”

Fly Fishing

Born in Washington, D.C. and raised in Tallahassee, Florida, White has never been far from the water. “I grew up salt water fly fishing in the Gulf along the panhandle mostly for redfish, seatrout, and Spanish mackerel.”

When he moved to North Carolina to attend the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill for undergrad, White switched to fly fishing for trout in the mountains of North Carolina and tailwaters of Tennessee. “I’m driven to fly fishing. I love being outside, being in nature away from the noise. It’s calming, it’s relaxing, it’s peaceful. It’s a nice diversion from the office and courthouse.”

White brings the quiet calmness of a fly fisherman and a level of self-confidence to meetings with clients. “I try to put them at ease, answer their questions about the process and reassure them it is not the end of the world. The process and sentencing, if convicted, might be painful, but what’s important now is how the matter is dealt with moving forward,” said White. “I often tell them the worst may already be behind them. Being arrested, taken to jail, maybe spending the night there until bond is posted, it’s not pleasant.”

Play by the Rules

“My approach to criminal defense is understanding the rules of the game that both sides have to play by,” said White. “We all have rules to follow. Citizens have laws to follow and those enforcing the law have rules to follow, whether agency policies and procedures or constitutional rights against certain actions. If law enforcement doesn’t follow the rules, that counts, too. The same goes for prosecutors and defense attorneys.”

“We generally maintain good relationships on both sides of the criminal law world, but we know when to stand our ground,” White said. “We don’t burn bridges, but we know when to stand our ground.”

White manages a healthy caseload and strives to achieve the best result in all of his cases. “A lot of the heavy lifting is done between court dates,” White said. “I find the best way to achieve success for the client is to make progress on the case outside of the courtroom.”

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Bob Friedman

Robert "Bob" Friedman is the publisher of Attorney at Law Magazine North Carolina Triangle. He contributes articles and interviews to each issue.

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