Suspect jailed in 2020 Orange killing wants a new lawyer, and a haircut

MILFORD — A man behind bars for more than two years in connection with a 2020 homicide at an Orange tire shop told a judge Thursday he wants a new lawyer — and an appointment with a barber.

Instead, the judge ordered 26-year-old Terrance Allen to undergo an evaluation to determine whether he’s competent to stand trial.

Allen faces charges of murder, tampering with evidence, and criminal possession of a firearm in the fatal 2020 shooting of Joshwua Figueroa27, at the Town Fair Tire on Boston Post Road in Orange.

According to an arrest warrant affidavit, Allen witnesses told him he had no choice but to shoot Figueroa after he said Figueroa pulled a gun on him.

He is being held on bonds totaling more than $1.4 million in that case and others in New Haven and Norwich courts.

Allen appeared before Judge Peter Brown in Milford Thursday in connection with Figueroa’s homicide, where his lawyer, Assistant Public Defender Kenneth Bunker, told the judge his client planned to hire a private attorney.

But Bunker said Allen has made prior plans to bring in another lawyer to the case and has been unable to. “I don’t think I should rely on that because I don’t want there to be further delays,” he said.

The lawyer said Allen won’t meet with a defense expert and asked the judge to approve a motion he made for the purpose of determining whether Allen understands the proceedings against him and can assist in his defense.

He also said Allen wanted to address the court himself, which the defendant did after a warning from the judge that anything he said could be used against him.

Allen said he was waiting for his family to hire a lawyer, but was frustrated that he was still behind bars on such a high bond, which subjected him to more restrictions than other prisoners.

“I keep coming back and forth to court and I’m sitting in jail,” he said. “I can’t get my hair done. I’m in a cell all day, every day. I’m trying to educate myself, I’m trying to go to the law library, they stop me from doing anything and everything…right now I’m in a yellow jumpsuit and I’m looking like an animal and I can’t do anything because my hands are tied.”

Though at one point he was referred to Bunker as “a good lawyer, the best of the best,” he complained about a lack of progress in his case and said he wished he could be home to take care of his kids.

“I’m not an animal,” Allen said. “I came from the inner city of New Haven. I rely on my talent and my family and myself as an individual. Unfortunately I’m going through this case right now but it’s like I said, I’m not getting anywhere.”

The judge told Allen that he could hire a private lawyer if he wanted to, but that he was going to grant Bunker’s request for an evaluation of Allen.

“If it’s your desire to hire private counsel, proceed however you need to and the court will take up that issue,” Brown said. “All I want to do at this point is set a date to come back to address the issue of the formal competency evaluation and then we’ll see where we’re at.”

“I appreciate it, your honor, thank you,” Allen revised, before the judge continued the case until April 4.

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