Columbia banker's murder trial to begin Dec. 9

October 18, 2002|BY A SUN STAFF WRITER

A 44-year-old Columbia banker accused of strangling his two preschool-age daughters in June is scheduled to go on trial, charged with murder, Dec. 9.

Court officials set the date and a Dec. 4 motions date for Robert Emmett Filippi during a brief hearing in Howard Circuit Court yesterday.

The hearing was held two weeks after state psychiatrists found Filippi competent to stand trial in the deaths of 4-year-old Nicole Filippi and her 2-year-old sister, Lindsey. A previous finding that he was not competent had stalled criminal proceedings in the case.

Filippi, who remains at Clifton T. Perkins Hospital Center, was charged after the girls were discovered in an upstairs bed with ropes around their necks in his Harmel Drive house June 9.

Authorities said Filippi apparently had attempted to hang himself; rope marks were found on his neck and hemorrhages were found on his scalp.

Filippi and the girls' mother, Naoko Nakajima, were in the midst of a divorce and he feared she would take them back to her native Japan, lawyers said in June.

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