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Sean Taylor’s Accused Killer Fires Lawyer

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credit: Greg Fiume/Getty Images

credit: Greg Fiume/Getty Images

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MIAMI (CBSDC/AP) — The man accused of fatally shooting Washington Redskins safety Sean Taylor during a 2007 burglary has fired his lawyer one month before his murder trial.

Eric Rivera Jr. gave the Miami-Dade County, Fla., judge a letter Friday explaining his reasons for firing Quinton Pitts, an experienced defense lawyer. The judge ordered the letter sealed and said a new lawyer would be appointed. He warned the 21-year-old Rivera that his trial will still begin April 16.

Four men from the Fort Myers area are accused of killing Taylor during a robbery at the player’s Miami-Dade home. All have pleaded not guilty and face possible life sentences if convicted. They are being tried separately.

A fifth man previously pleaded guilty to murder and burglary and is likely to testify against the others.

The Redskins selected Taylor with the fifth overall pick in the 2004 NFL Draft out of the University of Miami.

In three and half seasons with the team he ammassed 299 tackles and 12 interceptions.

(TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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