Wayland Murder Trial Live Blog: Wayland Detective Asked Neighbors What They Heard, Saw

Wayland man Nathaniel Fujita is facing first-degree murder charges arising from the death of Lauren Astley, also of Wayland, in 2011.

Editor's Note: Wayland Patch will post regular updates from the courtroom at Middlesex Superior Court in Woburn. The most recent updates will be at the top of the story with a time stamp. For more about this case and trial, see "Wayland Murder: Nathaniel Fujita Trial."

3:40 p.m. -- Det. Christopher Cohen has been a detective with the Wayland Police Department since 2003.

He said he arrived at Water Row on July 4, at about 9:10 a.m., at which point he had a conversation with Det. Sgt. Jamie Berger, who directed his attention to the water.

Cohen said he then observed the body in the water, as well as a shoe.

Cohen said that afternoon, at 2:05 p.m., he went to the Fujita residence to secure it as a search warrant was being obtained. He met Sudbury Police Lt. Scott Nix at the property. They checked the house and found that all the doors were locked and no one responded when they knocked, Cohen said.

They also saw that the two garage doors were open. Cohen said he and Nix entered the garage to see whether anyone was inside, but they were not collecting evidence. Cohen said they did see a car in the garage.

He and Nix then sat in their cars on either side of the house, Cohen said, waiting for further instructions.

"At some point while we were there, a young child ran toward the house, the residence," Cohen said.

Cohen said that he stopped the child, who told him he was trying to get to his house. The child, Cohen said, told him he'd been staying at a neighbor's house and Cohen directed him to go back there.

Other law enforcement officials arrived at about 7:40 p.m., Cohen said.

At 7:55 p.m., Cohen said, he was asked to "canvass" the neighborhood, along with another officer, with the purpose of asking neighbors in the immediate area whether they had heard or seen anything the night of July 3 and into the morning of July 4.

Cohen testified that they visited 11 residences, and encountered one where no one answered.

"We chose those residences within eyesight of the residence itself," Cohen said.

Cohen pointed out the residences they visited during the canvassing, using a map with residences highlighted in purple.

With that, court adjourned for the day. Testimony will resume Thursday at 9 a.m.

3:30 p.m. -- Sullivan began his cross-examination by recapping Bolivar's testimony regarding his relationship with Fujita, especially on sports teams.

McGovern then asked whether Fujita suffered any injuries playing football, to which Bolivar said he may have had some back injuries.

Sullivan then asked whether Fujita was hit so hard he "was spitting up blood" in a game against Lincoln-Sudbury and was ultimately hospitalized due to that injury. Bolivar said he remembered that.

Moving to the environmental science class Bolivar and Fujita were in together during their senior year, Sullivan asked, "Were there students who were kind of bored in that class?" Sullivan asked.

Bolivar responded that was true.

"Your memory of Nathaniel Fujita in that class is not that he sat there like a wall through the entire school year?" Sullivan asked.

"Not really," Bolivar replied.

Moving to questions about the various parties and events toward the end of senior year, Sullivan asked Bolivar again whether Fujita had attended Hill Night and the graduation party at the Blahuts house.

Specially, Sullivan asked whether the group of guys had gathered at the Williams house to drink vodka before going to the party.

"Would it be fair to say that everyone became intoxicated as a result of that?" Sullivan asked.

"Yeah," Bolivar replied.

Sullivan then addressed the June 11 party hosted by Williams, Bolivar, Henderson and Fujita. He reiterated that Fujita returned on June 12 to clean up after the party.

"Would it be fair to say that June 12 was the last time you saw Fujita before July 3?" Sullivan asked.

"Yes," Bolivar replied. He also testified that he didn't know whether he'd spoken to Fujita after that party clean-up day.

Bolivar also testified that there were some people who mentioned it was strange that they hadn't seen Fujita out during that period between June 12 and July 3.

McGovern than redirected, asking whether Bolivar saw Fujita and Astley talk during the June 11 party. Bolivar said he did not.

Asking also about the football injury that required hospitalization, McGovern asked whether that occurred senior year and Bolivar responded that it did not. Bolivar also testified that Fujita never complained to him about a head injury.

When it came to tackling and football contact, "He was never a heavy hitter," Bolivar responeded to McGovern. "He didn't love contact."

Sullivan then redirected, asking Bolivar to characterize the the job of a wide receiver and stating that sometimes, "you get your bell rung."

Bolivar agreed.

McGovern then asked a final question about the frequency that Fujita took hits as compared to other players on the football team.

Bolivar said he believed it was less often.

Bolivar left the stand at 3:30 p.m. Wayland Police Det. Christopher Cohen took the stand.

3:14 p.m. -- Testimony resumed at 3:03 p.m. with McGovern placing photographs in front of Bolivar. He said they images were taken at the graduation party thrown at Williams' house.

McGovern showed the photos to jurors as Bolivar named the individuals pictured.

Murphy, Williams, Henderson, Boiivar and Fujita were pictured in one photograph from the party, standing with their arms around one another and smiling into the camera.

In a second photograph, Fujita is pictured, along with other friends, holding up his Wayland High School football jersey, No. 1. Bolivar said seniors were allowed to choose their jersey numbers.

"I would say he was happy," Bolivar said of Fujita's mood on the day of the party.

In another photo exhibit, Bolivar explained that it showed four boys -- Bolivar, Henderson, Fujita and Williams -- sitting on a sofa at Williams' house.

Bolivar said he left Wayland some in June to visit his grandparents' house on the Cape. The last week of June, Bolivar said he went to his grandparents' house then to Murphy's house on the Cape. At the same time, Henderson and Williams were also away from Wayland.

Bolivar testified that on the night of July 3, he and the other boys who were away from Wayland, began receiving texts and phone calls that Astley was missing.

Bolivar said that he "didn't really see [Fujita] after cleaning up from our graduation party," Bolivar said.

McGovern concluded her questioning with that. Sullivan began his cross-examination at 3:14 p.m.

2:59 p.m. -- Ronald Bolivar graduated from Wayland High School in 2011. He is now a sophomore at Bentley University.

Bolivar said he met Fujita when the defendant moved to Wayland in the later years of elementary school. Toward the end of high school, Bolivar said, he saw Fujita on a regular basis.

Bolivar said he and Fujita often spent time with Cal Williams, D.J. Henderson and Connor Murphy, particularly in junior and senior year. He testified that Fujita was the last to become close with that particular group of friends.

"We played sports, we also were driving buddies so we pretty much carpooled every day," Bolivar said of his time spent with Fujita outside of school.

Bolivar was on the football and track teams with Fujita for four years and three years, respectively.

The summer before their senior year, Bolivar said that he and Fujita worked out with one of the football coaches each afternoon at Wayland High School.

Bolivar said they did not attend track practice as often during their senior year as they had in years past; he said that "senior slump" or a lack of interest led to the decreased attendance.

During senior year, Bolivar said the group of five guys "hung out" often at his house. Bolivar said the group spent a lot of time at his house, but went to Fujita's house perhaps "five or less" times.

McGovern asked what Bolivar noticed about Fujita's relationship with his parents.

"I noticed that he usually got his way, whatever that was," Bolivar said.

During senior year, Bolivar said, he and Fujita shared a parking space in the Wayland High School parking lot so they carpooled daily.

Bolivar said they often decided via text message the night before who would drive and who would be a passenger the next day. When Fujita drove, Bolivar testified, he drove a "gold-ish" Honda CRV.

Their senior year, Fujita and Bolivar were in an environmental science, English and business class together, Bolivar said. The environmental science class was the same as the one Emily Norton testified about on a previous day of testimony.

Bolivar said "we were very close" when McGovern asked him where the wildlife fencing project took place in relation to Water Row.

"He was generally quiet. He wasn't disruptive or anything," Bolivar testified regarding Fujita's behavior in class. He said the behavior stayed the same throughout senior year.

In a social setting, "With us he was very outgoing," Bolivar said. "We were very comfortable with each other."

McGovern asked whether Fujita behaved the same in a social setting throughout his senior year.

"It stayed the same," Bolivar said.

Bolivar then testified that alcohol was sometimes a part of their social gatherings. When McGovern asked how alcohol affected Fujita's behavior, Sullivan objected and the judge sustained that objection.

Moving to another topic, McGovern asked how the group of boys interacted with one another and Bolivar responded that they used "What's App," so they could group chat via phone.

Bolivar testified that he had a group chat application for the five guys, but also had a second group that included himself Williams, Henderson and Murphy, but excluded Fujita.

"We just sometimes liked to talk amongst us four," Bolivar said.

Bolivar said that Fujita was "for the most part" a part of the group's activities, but not always.

Bolivar said that he became more socially involved with Astley during junior year and generally saw her with the four close friends mentioned during Flynn's testimony.

"I'm not sure when it started, but it was a long relationship," Bolivar said of Fujita and Astley's dating relationship.

Bolivar said, "I think so," when asked whether Astley confided in him in the fall of senior year about her relationship with Fujita. He said he didn't remember Fujita confiding in him about the relationship.

Bolivar said he observed that Astley became involved with another man after her breakup with Fujita.

Moving on to the Senior Show parties in March of his senior year, Bolivar testified that both he and Fujita attended all three parties.

Bolivar then described Hill Night, a party of sorts on the night before the last day of school for seniors.

"All the seniors generally go out into some part of town and stay up all night," Bolivar said. "There's usually drinking involved and people stay up all night and go to school without sleeping."

Bolivar said both he and Fujita attended Hill Night and testified that Fujita interacted normally with people during that event.

On June 4, Bolivar said that Fujita and the other guys mentioned earlier met at Williams' house where they ate and drank alcohol before attending a party at the Blahut residence.

Bolivar said that he saw Astley dancing with Adam Nurse at the Blahut party.

The following day was Wayland High School's graduation ceremony, Bolivar said. Prior to the ceremony, Bolivar said, seniors met in the Commons at WHS where they prepared for the ceremony and interacted. Fujita talked with him and others during this gathering at the Commons, Bolivar said. Fujita then took part in the graduation ceremony.

Bolivar said there were "a lot" of graduation parties after the ceremony.

McGovern asked specifically about a party at the Williams house within about a week of graduation. Bolivar said it was thrown by himself, Williams, Henderson and Fujita. Murphy, Bolivar said, was a junior and had transferred to a private school, though still interacted with the friends.

The party took place in the Williams' backyard, and involved badminton and volleyball and was catered by Boloco, Bolivar said. It took place in the mid to late afternoon.

Fujita conducted himself in a "normal, friendly manner" during the party, Bolivar said.

Toward the end of the party, Bolivar said, Fujita's father played guitar as entertainment.

Bolivar testified that Fujita was among the people who returned to the party scene the next day to help with clean-up and returning rented tables.

McGovern showed Bolivar a photo that he said was taken at graduation and showed himself, Fujita and others. Sullivan objected when McGovern asked to submit the photo as evidence.

The judge overruled the objection and the photo of a group of smiling students, including Fujita, Bolivar and several others, was shown to jurors.

The judge then called a for a five-minute recess.

2:12 p.m. -- Cross-examination of Genevieve Flynn began at about 2 p.m.

Sullivan asked Flynn what years she was on the track team with Fujita, to which she responded that it was her sophomore and junior years.

Sullivan asked whether she knew if Fujita was very successful in track and she replied that she didn't know what awards he'd won.

Sullivan asked whether Fujita hung around with four close friends including Cal Williams, D.J. Henderson, R.J. Bolivar and Connor Murphy. Flynn responded that she remembered that he did.

"If you saw one of them ... you'd see all five," Sullivan asked Flynn about Fujita's close friends.

Flynn replied that was true.

Sullivan asked Flynn to think specifically back to late 2010 and early 2011 when seniors started finding out where they would be attending school.

"During the winter of that senior year, you told us that Nathaniel and Lauren were still boyfriend and girlfriend?" Sullivan asked, to which Flynn responded yes.

Flynn said that she remembered Fujita and Astley were dating at the time of the Senior Show parties she mentioned during her testimony under McGovern. By the time the awards banquet occurred in late May or early June, Flynn said, Astley and Fujita had broken up.

Sullivan recapped what Flynn told McGovern about Fujita's behavior at the June 5, 2011, graduation ceremony -- that she didn't notice anything unusual about his behavior at that time.

"Up to June 5, it would be fair to say the normal kind of socializing was going on with you and your friends and that group of guys?" Sullivan asked.

"Yes," Flynn responded.

Flynn then testified that after she returned from her trip to Germany in mid-June, she didn't believe she saw Fujita again even though she went to various parties with a similar group of friends.

Flynn's testimony ended on that note. She left the stand and the Commonwealth called Ronald Bolivar to the stand.

12:54 p.m. -- Flynn was not able to describe the reason for the breakup between Astley and Fujita, due to objections from Sullivan.

She did say that she knew Astley became involved with other men after the breakup with Fujita.

Flynn then described parties that took place toward the end of the 2011 school year related to the tradition of "Senior Show." When Flynn was asked to describe Fujita's behavior at the parties, Sullivan objected and the attorneys were again called into sidebar conference with the judge.

McGovern asked whether Flynn noticed anything "strange or unusual" in Fujita's ability to interact with others during those parties, and Flynn said she did not.

Flynn examined a photo she said was taken at one of the senior show parties that depicts Fujita with Hannah Blahut and Ariel Chates. Sullivan objected to the photo being submitted as evidence, but the judge overruled his objection after a sidebar conference.

The photo was then shown to the jury.

Flynn said she knew the photo was taken at that particular party because each party had a theme. This particular party, Flynn said, had a jungle theme and the girls wore animal print.

McGovern then asked about an senior awards night in 2011, which Flynn said both she and Fujita attended.

"Did he act appropriately or inappropriately to the best of your memory," McGovern asked. "Did he interact with people?"

Flynn responded the Fujita acted appropriately and interacted with people at that award's ceremony.

Flynn also testified that Fujita attended an early June party at Balhut's house.

On June 5, Wayland High School graduation took place, Flynn said, beginning to tear up as she described the day.

Flynn testified that both she and Fujita attended the ceremony and she didn't notice any "inappropriate" behavior by Fujita at the ceremony.

Following graduation, Flynn said she traveled to Germany with her dad, so she missed many of the post-graduation party. When she returned from Germany, she got in touch with Astley and saw her nearly every day in the last three weeks of Astley's life.

During those three weeks, Flynn testified, she did not see Astley with Fujita, but she knew that they were in communication.

Flynn said Astley shared with her that she had texted Fujita during that time, but he hadn't responded and "she thought that was weird."

"I said that I thought he probably hadn't gotten it, or he would have responded," Flynn said she told Astley.

Flynn testified that on Friday, July 1, she, Astley, Chates and Jacques had dinner at her mom's house in Weston. After dinner, Flynn said Chates and Astley went to a party, but she went home.

Then on Saturday, July 2, Flynn said she went to a party with Astley, Jacques and Chates. Flynn said that Astley was "hanging out" with a boy in the grade below them. They spent the night at Chates' house that night.

On Sunday, July 3, Astley dropped Flynn off at home before meeting her dad before she went to work.

"Was that the last time you saw Lauren Astley?" McGovern asked.

"Yes," Flynn replied, before breaking down in tears.

After pausing a moment to compose herself, Flynn said she didn't hear from Astley the rest of that day. She became involved in looking for Astley at about 10 p.m. when Mary Dunne, Astley's mother, called her house.

She went to the Wayland Town Beach later that night and met other people looking for Astley. Flynn testified that she spent all night at the beach.

Flynn said many people came and went over the night to assist in the search for Astley. She said she left the Wayland Town Beach lot the next morning after hearing that a body had been found on Water Row.

McGovern has concluded her questioning. Cross-examination will take place after lunch.

As court went into recess for the morning, Beth Fujita, the defendant's mother, was visibly emotional and being comforted by family and friends.

12:26 p.m. -- Genevieve Flynn, 20, took the stand. She graduated from Wayland High School in 2011, the same year that Astley and Fujita did. Flynn now attends Northeastern University.

Flynn said she was friends with Astley, and knew Fujita in high school.

"I knew [Astley] in elementary school, and we became best friends in high school," Flynn said. She said that she saw Astley nearly every day in their senior year, both in and out of school.

"We had a group of friends, it was me, Lauren, Ariel Chates, Chloe Jacques and Hannah Blahut," Flynn said. "We would just hang out at each other's houses, go out to eat, just hang out."

Flynn said the five friends graduated from Wayland High in the same year and went on to say where each girl was attending college.

Beginning to cry, Flynn responded to McGovern's question that Astley planned to attend Elon University in North Carolina.

Flynn said she first got to know Fujita during high school. They had homeroom together since both their last names start with F. They shared a homeroom throughout high school. In addition to seeing him daily in homeroom, Flynn said they ran in the same group of friends, particularly toward the end of high school.

Flynn said she also ran track until her senior year, and practiced with Fujita who was also on the track team.

She testified that she primarily saw Fujita outside of school at parties, and she considered him to be a friend in their senior year.

Flynn testified that the five girlfriends communicated mainly via test messages, a group thread on Facebook and an application (called, "What's App") on their cell phones through which they could text to a group.

She said the friendship among the five women involved confiding personal inofmration with one another. Flynn said she knew that Fujita and Astley were boyfriend and girlfriend.

"They were on and off," Flynn said. "It ended officially at the end of senior year.

"Since they'd had a relationship that was very on and off, when they did break up for the last time, there was a lot of emotions," Flynn said, saying that Astley ended the relationshipsometime in the spring before graduation.

Flynn said she knew why Astley had ended the relationship, but before she could elaborate, Sullivan objected and the judge called a sidebar conference.

Her testimony will continue momentarily.

12:10 p.m. -- Sullivan began his cross-examination by recapping Sharry testimony to McGovern.

He noted that there was no eye contact between Fujita and Sharry on July 3 when she saw him driving, a fact Sharry confirmed.

Sullivan concluded his cross-examination quickly. Genevieve Flynn was called next.

12:05 p.m. -- Anna Sharry, 19, graduated from Wayland High School in 2012. She identified Nathaniel Fujita, someone she came to know of in middle school, as the defendant seated to her left and wearing a gray suit and green tie.

Sharry said she did not know Fujita well, but saw him around Wayland High School and specifically in the school parking lot.

She testified that her neighbor, Kara McDonald (spelling unknown), was a senior the same year as Fujita and had a parking space in the school lot. Sharry said she rode to school with her neighbor, and had opportunity to see Fujita drive a gold Honda CRV and park in the school lot.

On Sunday, July 3, 2011, Sharry testified that she had slept over at her friend's house the night before and then spent the day at her own home in Wayland. That night, she said, her parents went out to dinner so her mom ordered a sandwich for Sharry to pick up at Natalie's Kitchen in Natick. She said her mom placed the order at 7:29 p.m.

Sharry said she left her house immediately and headed to Route 27 (Main Street) via Pequot Road in Wayland. She drove south on Route 27 to Natalie's Kitchen, where she quickly picked up her sandwich and left to go home and eat it.

On her drive home, Sharry said she passed the Wayland Fire Station on Main Street. As she drove past the station, she said she saw a car headed toward her that she recognized to be Fujita's gold CRV.

Sharry said she first noticed Fujita's car when it was about 200 feet ahead of her. She saw him slow down to turn on King Street just as she approached the same street.

Sharry said she saw that Fujita was driving the car and he was alone. He turned left onto King Street.

"I noticed that the window was down and he wasn't wearing a shirt and there was loud music playing," Sharry said. "My window was down so I could hear."

Indicating a table about 10 feet ahead of her in the courtroom, Sharry said that was how close she was to Fujita's car.

She testified that Fujita was playing loud rap or hip-hop music, and that she didn't notice any particular expression on his face -- "just focused."

Sharry estimated that she saw Fujita at about 7:45 p.m. based on how long it took her to leave her house, get her sandwich and return to King Street on her way back home.

"It was still pretty light out," Sharry said. "The sun hadn't gone down yet."

Sharry said she crossed paths with Fujita -- as he was turning onto King Street, she was continuing north on Main Street.

Later that night, Sharry said she went to a friend's grandmother's house in Scituate, where she remained until July 5.

Sharry said she told police about seeing Fujita's car about a week later.

Sullivan began his cross-examination at 12:05 p.m.

11:46 a.m. -- Testimony resumed with Sullivan questioning Twomey about his duties at the scenes.

Sullivan asked about the process of documenting evidence at a scene.

Sullivan questioned, specifically, whether someone outside the state police examined the fingerprints. Twomey said that sometimes a regulatory agency outside the department will examine the evidence to check process and accuracy, but in this case, the state police performed the analysis and verification.

Sullivan's focus then turned to the Poland Springs water bottles recovered from Astley's Jeep. Twomey described, in response to Sullivan's question, how individual pieces of evidence are numbered in the system and will keep those same numbers throughout a case.

Twomey said he was not present when the Poland Springs bottle was taken from Astley's Jeep and that it was given to him by another trooper.

"The only print that could be identified on that [water bottle] came back to be that of Officer Sean Fitzgerald of the Wayland Police?" Sullivan asked.

"That's correct," Twomey responded.

Fitzgerald's prints were also found on the second Poland Springs bottle, Twomey testified. Two additional prints were found on the bottle, but weren't of sufficient quality to draw any conclusions, Twomey testified.

Moving to the prints found on the CRV window, Twomey testified that there were two usable prints found: one belonging to Fujita and the other positively not belonging to Fujita.

Sullivan asked whether Fujita was fingerprinted by police after his July 5 arrest, and Twomey responded that he was.

Twomey recapped some of his training in response to Sullivan's questioning. The witness said he has testified one other time as an expert on fingerprints, a case in Middlesex Court.

"Do you still work in the crime scene services on fingerprints?" Sullivan asked.

"I do not," Twomey responded.

With that, Sullivan concluded his questioning, and Prosecutor McGovern began redirecting the questioning.

She asked Twomey to look at a photograph that he said he took in the kitchen of the Fujita household during his July 4 search. In response to McGovern's question, Twomey said the photograph depicted a GNC bag on the kitchen table.

Twomey's testimony is concluded. The next witness is Anna Sharry.

11:03 a.m. -- Defense attorney William Sullivan clarified that Twomey was not the main investigator on this case, but was called upon to document evidence with photographs and to take fingerprints.

Twomey testified that he returned to the lab between 1 a.m. and 2 a.m. on July 5, after his first search of the Fujita home, which began the evening of July 4.

Sullivan asked Twomey whether a particular photograph in evidence was a "fair and accurate representation" of the Fujita garage.

"I believe so," Twomey said. "To the best of my recollection."

Sullivan asked whether Twomey knew if other people had been in the garage prior to the scene being secured for evidence collection, a question to which Twomey responded that he did not.

When it came to the brass doorknob described during the questioning by Prosecutor Lisa McGovern, Twomey explained to Sullivan that the doorknob area was sawed out of the door rather than simply unscrewed in order to protect any fingerprint or biological evidence for additional tests.

Sullivan asked whether those additional tests were done on the doorknob area, which Twomey responded that he didn't handle himself.

Sullivan questioned Twomey on the process of executing a search warrant and how he decides what to photograph. Twomey explained that he documents what he sees, but also takes direction from the other investigators at the scene.

The defense attorney then asked whether an at-home drug test for marijuana was found in the defendant's parents' bedroom during the execution of a search warrant.

Twomey examined a photo submitted to evidence and said it did appear to be an at-home drug test for marijuana. He said he believed it was located in a drawer in the defendant's parents' bedroom during his July 12 search of the property.

Sullivan then asked about the alcohol bottles found in Fujita's bedroom, asking Twomey to clarify whether the bottles were present during the July 4 search. Twomey testified that they were photographed during the second search, but Sullivan stated that surely no one placed the bottles and cans in the defendant's bedroom between July 4 and July 12.

In response to further questioning, Twomey said he located some beer cans during the first search of the crawl space accessible via Fujita's bedroom.

"I thought you told us your job is to document the scene because later on something may pop up," Sullivan said, when Twomey said he didn't recall seeing a GNC bag in the kitchen during the first search.

Sullivan questioned how many times Twomey had conducted the LCV test prior to his doing the test in the Fujita kitchen. Twomey responded that he believed he'd conducted that test a "couple of times" during an earlier investigation of a Lowell crime scene.

Posting a photo of the Fujita kitchen sink, that Twomey earlier testified tested positive for blood in an LCV test, Sullivan asked whether a yellow rubber cleaning glove lying on the sink had also been tested.

Twomey said that he believed that the whole area had been sprayed with the LCV.

Sullivan pressed Twomey on the lack of photos of the upstairs bathroom after LCV tests were done in that room.

Twomey said he "should have taken the photos" and did not remember whether any of the other investigators present during the search had instructed him to do so. Regardless, he said, he should have taken them.

Sullivan then asked Twomey whether he took any photos from the detached garage showing the sight lines from that garage to the home across Fuller Street, and whether he took any photos of the sight lines from driving down Fuller Street or the house behind the garage.

Twomey said he didn't have any recollection of whether he had such images in the collection of "hundreds of photos" taken during the searches.

Sullivan continued to press Twomey on whether he took photos of the three other out buildings on the Fujita property, but Twomey said he didn't recall photographing the other buildings.

Sullivan questioned why he wouldn't have documented those buildings in case they became relevant as evidence later.

It's time for a morning recess. Cross-examination will resume in 15 minutes.

10:26 a.m. -- Massachusetts State Trooper David Twomey's testimony resumed at about 9:15 a.m. with a focus on car mats found and photographed in the Fujita garage during the execution of a search warrant on July 4, 2011.

Jurors saw various photos of the two car mats.

Twomey said that after he photographed and documented evidence in the Fujita garage, he initally entered the Fujita home through a rear entrance that accessed the basement.

In response to McGovern's question, Twomey said he also entered the kitchen via a separate rear door.

"I observed the entrance to the kitchen door there was a reddish-brown stain on the brass doorknob and friction ridge detail (fingerprints)," Twomey said, later pointing out details on a photograph of the doorknob.

Twomey said the area around the doorknob was removed -- a power saw was used to remove the wooden area around the doorknob -- and it was transported to the crime services lab in Sudbury.

While in the kitchen, Twomey said he and a sergeant applied Leucocrystal Violet (LCV), to look for "occult" blood. Twomey told McGovern he had conducted such a test three of four times in his career.

"It's blood you can't see with the naked eye," Twomey explained. "[LCV] is a mist that adheres to ... molecules in the blood that causes oxydation. It causes the potential blood to turn into a purple color."

When the LCV was applied at the Fujita home, Twomey testified, "I observed there were several purple stains on the floor and specifically in the sink of the kitchen."

Twomey said he also found positive reactions to LCV -- indicating the presence of blood -- in the Fujitas' upstairs bathroom tub and sink.

Prior to applying the LCV, Twomey testified, he didn't notice any staining on the floor of the kitchen. He photographed the kitchen LCV results and pointed out for jurors the spots of purple depicted in photographs.

Twomey said he finished documenting evidence at the Fujita home after midnight on July 5, 2011. He said he was next called into action on the case later in the afternoon on July 5, when he responded to the Wayland Police Department to conduct an evidence search on a gold Honda CRV owned by the Fujita family.

He said his duty with the vehicle was to document the search of the vehicle with photography and collect fingerprints. He was working with chemist Jennifer Montgomery, who was responsible for documenting biological evidence, Twomey testified. Twomey explained that the two worked "in tandem" with Montgomery pointing out features he needed to photograph.

Twomey said his attention was drawn to a "window area on the rear passenger side" of the vehicle. He said there were several areas of "friction ridge detail" on the window; they were in a "reddish-brown substance."

McGovern showed Twomey a small triangular windown that was removed from the CRV, marked with evidence tape. Twomey held the window in front of the jury box, pointing out six areas of tape that documented ridge detail on the window.

Twomey said he also collected three plastic trash bags from the rear of the CRV.

"Major case prints would consist of palm areas and all areas of the fingerprints," Twomey explained, in contrast to a regular fingerprint card that includes only the rolled fingers. He went on to say that "major case prints" of Fujita were taken on July 5.

On July 12, Twomey said he was dispatched to the Fujita house to execute a second search warrant. On this trip, he and a team searched the garage area, the interior of the house, the defendant's bedroom and the attic of the house, Twomey testified.

"There was in Nate Fujita's bedroom ... an opening that leads up," Twomey explained. "[It's] about a 2-by-2 foot opening in the ceiling of the room, which you can remove the opening and climb up into the attic."

Twomey called it a "crawl space," an unfinished area covered in insulation.

"I was digging through the insulation to find evidence that may be related to the investigation," Twomey said. He said his foot went through the ceiling of the attic during the investigation, but he didn't find any evidence.

Twomey said they did find "several bottles of alcohol in the bedroom"; he said he remembered them being behind a television set at the back of the room.

Photos of Fujita's bedroom showed walls painted sky blue. Other photos showed the narrow "crawl space," Twomey mentioned in his testimony. Twomey said the only access to the crawl space was through the defendant's bedroom, "to the best of his knowledge."

Photographs also record the multiple bottles of alcohol -- it appeared about seven to 10 -- found in Fujita's bedroom.

Twomey said during the second search he also found a cardboard box in the Fujita garage that appeared to have a red-brown stain on it. The box was removed to be tested by a lab.

He said the July 12 search took "six hours, maybe more." Neither a weapon nor a cellular phone were found during the investigation.

Twomey again worked on the case on Aug. 5, when he went to Wayland Town Beach to document the removal of storm drains from the parking lot at the beach.

While there, he was asked to photograph a set of keys retrieved from the drain. Twomey said the keys belonged to Lauren Astley's Jeep. Twomey said he did examine the keys for fingerprints.

Twomey, responding to McGovern's request, told the jury his credentials, including that he has been processing crime scenes since 2000 and has a Master's degree in forensic science.

Throughout his career, Twomey estimated, he has examined "in the hundreds maybe even into the thousands" of prints.

McGovern led Twomey to explain more about the nature of fingerprints:

"You find friction ridge detail on the palmar and finger areas of the hand and on the plantar areas of your feet," Twomey explained. "The fingerprints consist of several ridges and furrows, which create patterns."

"Latent means 'hidden,'" Twomey said. "When we're looking for latent prints, they're prints that aren't readily visible to the eye.

"Basically all fingerprints are unique and persistent," Twomey continued. "They're unique in that no two individuals have the same fingerprint, and persistent in that disbarring permanent scarring or some major injury they will remain the same throughout life."

He said plastic and metal may have fingerprints that are easily visible, but fingerprints on something like paper or wood may not be as easily visible.

Twomey testified that the keys recovered from a drain did not feature fingerprints; however, the two Poland Springs water bottles found in Astley's Jeep showed fingerprints of Wayland Officer Sean Fitzgerald.

Additionally, the two beer cans found at Water Row featured fingerprints, but they did not match those of Fujita. The other items found at Water Row lacked the quantity, clarity or quality necessary for positive fingerprint identification.

The doorknob taken from the Fujita kitchen also lacked the clarity and quailty for positive fingerprint identification. Twomey said that multiple people touching the area or twisting their finger while touching the area can distort prints.

Twomey went on to discuss a print found on the right, rear passenger window of the gold Honda CRV. Showed photos of the window print and Fujita's fingerprint card, Twomey testified that the particular print shown was a match to Fujita.

Other troopers also examined the prints, in order to draw conclusions, he said.

Twomey said the print on the window was captured in a "reddish-brown substance," a sample of which was taken by chemist Montgomery.

Of the six prints taken from the window, only one was positive for Fujita, Twomey said. Another print in the reddish-brown substance on the window was positively identified as not belonging to Fujita. Whose print it was, was not discussed.

Cross-examination begins now with William Sullivan questioning Twomey.

9:16 a.m. -- Judge Peter Lauriat opened the day with an update on the trial schedule for jurors. He said that attorneys have informed him that the trial is "On, if not a little bit ahead, of schedule," Lauriat said.

"It's conceivable that the case will be given to you [the jurors] next Friday, that would be March 1," Lauriat said. However, due to some procedural issues, Lauriat said it would more likely be Monday, March 4 before jurors would begin their deliberations.

Trooper David Twomey has returned to the stand to continue the testimony that was in process at the close of court yesterday.

9:07 a.m. -- Judge Peter Lauriat entered the courtroom briefly and held a sidebar conference with attorneys. He then put the court in recess.

Neither Nathaniel Fujita nor the jury have yet been seated in the courtroom.

Brooklyn Lowery February 20, 2013 at 10:27 PM
Relevant questions, Donna, and I don't know the answers. Both decisions were made following sidebar conferences between the judge and attorneys. I, of course, have no idea what was said during those conferences, so I can't report the judge's reasoning.
Ali S February 21, 2013 at 12:11 AM
Thank you for this thorough trial coverage!
Meaghan Winokur February 21, 2013 at 04:35 AM
Donna- I am not an attorney but I suspect that the response to the question about how the alcohol affected Nate's behavior would be a guess on his part and would probably fall under the hearsay rule and would not be admissible. The photo I would suppose is an actual representation of a moment at the party he was at. That's just my opinion.
Caroline February 21, 2013 at 03:32 PM
Your doing a great reporting job, this is justice that never came for the Sarah Pryor tragedy, so it's kind of therapeudic for me.
Karla Vallance February 22, 2013 at 04:16 PM
For those who don't know about Sarah Pryor, mentioned in Caroline's comment, here's a quick capsule: http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=74186147


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