Tostee not ‘the cartoon villain portrayed in the media’
THE accused "Tinder killer" has been caught up in a tragic "first date that went horribly wrong", his lawyer says.
Barrister Saul Holt, acting for Gable Tostee, has told a jury that Warriena Wright's behaviour was "really, really weird" before she fell 14 storeys to her death on the Gold Coast.
Mr Holt told Brisbane Supreme Court his client, who stands charged with Ms Wright's murder, was "gentlemanly", and extended kindness and patience to Ms Wright in the period leading up to her death.
In his closing address in the trial, Mr Holt impressed on the jury his client was a real person not, "the cartoon villain portrayed in the media".
He said the audio recording of Mr Tostee's and Ms Wright's encounter in the hours before her death was an "extraordinary resource".
Prosecutor Glen Cash said the recording, that runs for about 1.5 hours, provides evidence Ms Wright had her "breathing restricted" by Mr Tostee, who was responding to her throwing rocks at him and hitting him on the head with a piece of metal.
He alleged Mr Tostee intended to cause Ms Wright grievous bodily harm when restricting her breath.
The prosecution alleges she was so intimidated by this, and his actions of forcing her out on to the balcony and locking the door, that she felt she had to climb down from Mr Tostee's balcony to seek safety.
If the jury agrees, they were told they should find Mr Tostee guilty of murder.
However, if the jury does not agree Mr Tostee intended to cause her bodily harm, they can find him guilty of manslaughter.
Mr Holt said Mr Tostee's actions were lawful, and if the jury agreed, his client must not be convicted.
He said Mr Tostee was lawfully permitted to restrain and force Ms Wright outside, as he was acting to "remove a disorderly person from his property".
He said shutting and locking her on the balcony was a "de-escalation", intended to intervene in an altercation that had got out of control.
Warriena's mum angry after judge releases scream recording
WARRIENA Wright's mother is outraged that a recording of her daughter's final moments was released to the media.
Gable Tostee is on trial in Brisbane for Ms Wright's murder.
Ms Wright fell to her death from his Gold Coast apartment balcony on August 7, 2014.
Merzabeth Tagpuno said she was distressed that the Supreme Court allowed media access to the recording.
Tostee recorded much of the evening's events on his mobile phone.
The recording appears to show them fighting before Ms Wright start screaming 'no' about 30 times.
Tostee is alleged to have locked her on his balcony and it is believed she fell while trying to climb to an apartment below.
The court was told yesterday that there were more than 80 injuries on her body.
"I asked not to release the audio tapes - yet I was over-ruled by the judge," Ms Tagpuno said in a statement to media.
"I did not want to hear my daughter screaming, 'No, no, no'.
"I did not want to remember her like that.
"I feel our family had been disrespected by the judge's ruling to release the audio tapes to the media.
"To those who want an exclusive from my family, we're saying 'No'.
"The media have hurt me so bad. When this is over I will go back to New Zealand.
"I want to be left alone. Please respect my privacy, I will not talk to anybody; just leave our family in peace.
"No matter how this goes, I just want to go home."
The trial continues this morning.
- SHERELE MOODY
- ARM NEWSDESK