• Defense: Nathaniel Fujita was depressed before ex-girlfriend's death


    WOBURN (MyFoxBoston.com) – The lawyer for a Wayland man charged with fatally stabbing and strangling his ex-girlfriend said in opening statements that his client acted "outside of his body."

    Attorney William Sullivan laid the groundwork for an insanity defense on Wednesday in 20-year-old Nathanial Fujita's first-degree murder trial in Middlesex Superior Court.

    Sullivan told jurors Fujita took his breakup with Lauren Astley hard, became depressed and couldn't control himself or understand his actions.

    The prosecutor countered that Fujita's actions were planned and deliberate, and he tried hard to cover his tracks, hiding bloody clothes, washing blood from his home and throwing Astley's body in a marsh.

    Fujita has pleaded not guilty to killing Astley in July 2011. Both were 18 at the time and had just graduated from high school.

    Astley's body was found in a marsh in July of 2011. Prosecutors say Fujita strangled and stabbed her to death. She'd broken up with him months before.
    The MetroWest Daily News says prosecutors will show Fujita had a history of violence and anger issues towards Astley, her family and friends.

    The trial is expected to last about a month.

    The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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