OGDEN — The Justice for Esther awareness pins being worn by the Fujimoto family during the ongoing trial centered around the death of Esther Fujimoto are visible to those in the courtroom.The lapel pins, designed by the Fujimoto family, have deep symbolic meaning for the family, each highlight in the pin accenting a part of Esther Fujimoto’s life.
The Pineview boating fatality trial in 2nd District Court continued Thursday, at which Colton Raines and Robert Cole Boyer are charged in the death of Esther Fujimoto, who was struck by a powerboat driven by Raines on Aug. 21, 2011, while she swam in Pineview Reservoir.
The pins worn by the Fujimoto family tell her story.
The swimmer on the pin is Esther swimming in her black wet suit and her pink swimming cap, said Denice Fujimoto, who presented the pins to some of the media representatives covering the trial.
Depicted on the pin behind the swimmer is the Wasatch Mountains, or possibly Mt. Fuji in Japan, as part of the family name, Denice Fujimoto said.
The tan color on the pin represents the sands of Pineview Reservoir, while the surrounding blue represents the Ogden Valley sky, she said in a letter of explanation.
“The outline of the state of Utah and the HB 92 (on the pin) represents the boating bill which passed both houses unanimously in the 2012 Utah Legislature and was signed into law by Governor (Gary) Herbert,” Denice Fujimoto said.
Because of a lack of previous boating laws in the state, the boaters who allegedly killed Esther, Denice Fujimoto said, were only charged with misdemeanors, rather than felonies.
“HB 92 makes leaving the scene of a fatal boating accident in Utah a third degree felony,” she said.
Raines faces the same charges as Skyler Shepherd, the boat’s owner, who was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in Weber County Jail after a jury found him guilty of reckless endangerment and obstruction of justice, both class A misdemeanors, and failure to render aid, a class B misdemeanor.
Boyer, the third person in the boat, is charged with a single count of obstruction of justice.
A verdict for Raines and Boyer is expected Thursday afternoon.