A man charged with killing his step-father says he doesn’t want a second rate, inferior Legal Aid lawyer to represent him on a murder charge. However, he wants legal aid to pay for a private lawyer of his choice.
Less than a week before Christmas, 41-year-old Robert Noftall was killed in R0enews. His step-son, 26-year-old Brandon Noftall, has been charged with second-degree murder in connection with the stabbing.
After his legal aid lawyer found himself in a conflict of interest, Noftall parted ways and is seeking private counsel.
Prior to 2018 that was an option but an amendment to the Legal Aid Act that year, removed that option. The only caveat is that in extenuating circumstances, the director has the power to appoint a private lawyer.
Legal aid says it has experienced and confident lawyers in its office who are not in a conflict and could represent Noftall. He will now have to make his case with the director which may be difficult after calling them out in court as second-rate and inferior.
Noftall is also accused of assaulting a his mother days earlier. He remains in custody and is scheduled to return to court in two weeks.