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Man sentenced to life for fatal stabbing of Waianae teacher

By Ken Kobayashi

POSTED: 12:12 p.m. HST, Jun 25, 2013

A state judge sentenced today a man with a long history of mental illness to a life term with possibility of parole for the 2009  murder of popular Waianae High School teacher Asa Yamashita.

Circuit Judge Rom Trader sentenced Tittleman Fauatea, 29, to the mandatory life term.

In a nonjury trial in March, Trader rejected the insanity defense and found Fauatea guilty of the stabbing at the Ewa Town Center Feb. 27, 2009.

During today’s hearing, Bryan Yamashita, the victim’s husband, told Fauatea that what he did was “horrible and terrible,” but he said he holds no “ill will” toward him and forgives him.

Fauatea chose not to say anything before sentencing.

His lawyer, Barry Sooalo, said he plans to appeal, citing what he said was the “overwhelming evidence” that his client was insane.

Trader also ordered Fauatea to pay restitution of $4,733 for funeral expenses and $4,197 to the Crime Victim Compensation fund.

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