Fujita Asks for New Lawyer in Murder Trial

Wayland's Nathaniel Fujita tells court he wants to fire his counsel.


Nathaniel Fujita appeared in Middlesex Superior Court this morning wearing a blue button-down shirt and slacks.

The 19-year old from Wayland is accused of last year killing his ex-girlfriend and fellow Wayland resident Lauren Astley. He has been held without bail in the Middlesex House of Correction in Billerica following his arraignment in superior court last August.

In court today, he told Judge S. Jane Haggerty that he doesnt "feel comfortable with [William Sullivan] representing me."

Sullivan told the court that there had been a "breakdown in the
lawyer/client relationship," but that he had been retained by Fujita's
parents and he did not believe they were in agreement with his firing.

Judge Haggerty asked Fujita if he had another lawyer in mind and he
responded that he did, though he had not yet paid to retain him.

Sullivan told the judge that he believed Fujita could be considered indigent in
this situation.

The court the went into recess in order to interview Fujita and determine indigence.

Beth Fujita, the defendant's mother, left the courtroom in tears.

UPDATE: Probation has determined that Fujita is indigent, so the judge advised him she would appoint counsel. Fujita requested some time to try and retain his own attorney; the judge granted him two weeks.

Fujita's next court date: 2 p.m. on Oct. 16.


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