Georges Hall shooting: Hamad Asaad shot dead in ‘drive-by’ attack linked to Bankstown shopping centre execution of Walid ‘Wally’ Ahmad


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Georges Hall shooting: Man shot dead in ‘drive-by’ attack

‘Too wild for his own good’: Suspected gangland trigger man gunned down in Sydney

Six months after standover man Walid “Wally” Ahmad was gunned down in a brazen and very public execution, the man suspected of pulling the trigger has suffered a similar fate.

Hamad Assaad, 29, had been on the police radar after he was identified as a key suspect in the death of Mr Ahmad, who was shot as he sat in a cafe outside Bankstown Central shopping centre in April.

A man believed to be in his twenties, has been shot dead in Georges Hall, south west Sydney.

Investigators believe Mr Assaad was aligned to a rival family, which some of the Ahmads had been pitted against after another shooting outside Wally Ahmad’s smash repairs in Sydney’s south-west.

“He was on the other team,” one source put it.

It is not yet certain whether Mr Assaad’s death was in response to his widely rumoured role in the death of Mr Ahmad, who was at the helm of one of south-west Sydney’s infamous families.

Investigators suspect two gunmen and a driver were lying in wait in a black car near Mr Assaad’s Georges Hall home on Tuesday morning for him to emerge.

At about 9.20am, he walked out of his family’s Sturt Avenue home with a 12-year-old boy, whom he was about to drive somewhere.

After moving one car from the garage, Mr Assaad was getting into another when two gunmen opened fire.

“This is a targeted shooting,” Homicide Squad Detective Chief Inspector Grant Taylor said.

“These individuals obviously wanted to kill him, there is no doubt about that.”

Mr Assaad was shot “many” times, police say, and despite attempts to revive him he died on his driveway.

Neighbours said they heard a rapid succession of up to six gunshots, which sounded like they came from a semi-automatic weapon.

“I was about to go in mum’s car and I heard boom boom boom,” said the daughter of Sturt Avenue resident Sonya Aleksandrova.

“I was like, ‘Mummy, mummy shut everything please hide, shut the doors, shut the windows’.”

Mr Assaad’s mother emerged from their home, hysterical, after the shooting to find her bloodied son. Traumatic scenes followed.

Many relatives and friends flocked to the taped-off crime scene throughout the day, with one man caught jumping into the Assaad home back yard.

Wally Elriche, the one-time bodyguard for Salim Mehajer, was among a small group of men circled by police at the rear of the Assaad home.

He was not arrested but another man was loaded into the back of a police truck and taken away.

At another side of the crime scene, Mr Assaad’s distraught grandmother demanded officers let her past the police tape.

“They won’t let me see my son’s son,” she said.

“He hasn’t done anything at all. Go catch the drug dealers, gun dealers, they are killing people.”

The latest shooting has fuelled concerns about retaliation, with the Middle Eastern Organised Crime Squad part of the push to try to quell those concerns.

“We are always concerned about any potential retaliation from events like this,” Inspector Taylor said.

An obvious line of inquiry for police is whether Mr Assaad, a well-known figure in the south-west criminal community, was killed in retribution to Wally Ahmad’s demise.

However, police stressed they were keeping all avenues open.

Mr Assaad had previously escaped a conviction for the murder of Mohamad Alahmad, 37, who was shot six times as he sat in his BMW in the driveway of his South Granville home in 2007.

It was alleged at the time that Mr Alahmad’s ex-wife was in a relationship with crime boss Nasser Kalache but had started talking to Mr Alahmad about a possible reconciliation.

Mr Assaad was then under orders to kill Mr Alahmad with another man.

He beat the charge and was found not guilty in 2010.

In the wake of his death, a friend revealed Mr Assaad had run for Kalache for years.

“He was too wild for his own good,” he said.

“He was a really nice kid but you could direct him [to do something].”

The Homicide Squad now has three murder investigations in 2016 with possible links to the Ahmad family conflict.

It started with the shooting of Safwan Charbaji, 32, outside Wally Ahmad’s Condell Park smash repairs in April.

The conflict erupted between members of the Elmir and Ahmad family over a bizarre $100,000 kidnapping plan.

Mr Charbaji was killed and another man was shot in the jaw but survived.

Wally’s brother, Mahmoud “Brownie” Ahmad, is one of a handful of men police suspect used a gun that day. He travelled to Lebanon after the shooting.


Boy witnessed dad’s drive-by shooting death

LAURA BANKS, JACK HOUGHTON and DAVE MEDDOWS, The Daily Telegraph

A MAN — who was a suspect in a gangland hit at a Bankstown shopping centre earlier this year — was gunned down in the driveway of a south western Sydney house as he was getting ready to take his young son to school.

Hamad Asaad, 29, who was shot repeatedly in the driveway of a Georges Hall house just before 9.30am, was a suspect in the murder of Walid ‘Wally’ Ahmad, who was gunned down in the carpark of Bankstown Central in April, police sources told The Daily Telegraph.

Ahmad was killed in a hail of bullets when he was ambushed in the midday attack, where two other bystanders were also shot.

Police believe Ahmad’s killing may have been retribution for the murder of Safwan Charbaji earlier in April outside Ahmed’s smash repair shop in Condell Park.

A sheet covers the body of a man gunned down in a driveway in Georges Hall.

Asaad was also acquitted in the murder of Mohamad Alahmad who was shot while getting into his BMW outside his Granville home in August 2008.

It is believed Mr Alahmad’s wife Eman Hamawi had left him and entered into a relationship with crime boss Nasser Kalache but was considering reconciling with the murdered man.

Asaad collapsed in the driveway suffering multiple gunshot wounds about 9.30am. He died a short time later.

There are reports he had been shot in the head.

The man’s body was covered with a white sheet and a large quantity of blood could be seen on the concrete.

Paramedics had worked to save the man but he died at the scene.

A crime scene was set up and police from the Middle Eastern Organised Crime Squad are involved in the investigation.

The sister of the victim broke down trying to get to her brother.

With tears streaming down her face, the woman begged police guarding the scene to let her in.

“Please, he’s my brother,” she said before being told she could not enter.

The woman ran off towards another distressed person waiting in a car.

A visibly distraught man is held back by friends and police at the scene. Picture: AAP
Asaad’s visibly distressed mother was helped from the scene by police and an unknown man..
Police had to earlier hold back this distraught man, believed to be the victim’s brother, who was trying to gain access to the crime scene.

A man wearing a hoodie was also seen pleading with police to be let into the crime scene, shouting the victim was his brother.

Police were also seen leading an older woman from the scene, but it is unclear if she is related to the man.

Chief Inspector Grant Taylor said the shooting was “targeted” and unfolded in a matter of seconds.

He confirmed the man had ties to Middle Eastern crime gangs.

“He was moving one car out of the driveway when he was shot multiple times,” he said.

“His mother was home at the time. She is hysterical as you can imagine.”

Insp Taylor said the victim was being “observed” by the shooters before the attack.

“The motivation behind this murder is not really known and it would not be the right thing for us to speculate,” he said.

“The family is very distraught.”

An employee of nearby Pool and Spa Warehouse, Robert, told The Daily Telegraph he heard eight to 10 shots, and ran outside to see a car speed from the location.

“We heard the shots going off and walked out and saw I’m pretty sure a black Mercedes fly up the road,” he said.

Police have since confirmed the vehicle was a black Audi sedan.

Robert said it sounded like more than one gun was used in the shooting.

“It sounded like there were six (shots) from one gun and then I heard another shot that sounded like it came from another gun,” he said.

Dozens of police raced to the scene after reports of the shooting.
Police from the Middle Eastern Organised Crime Squad are among those at the scene.

His colleague Raj Goundar, 50, agreed.

“I think it was an automatic weapon because it went dudududud really fast,” he said.

“It was not a simple one shot, there were a lot of them.

“It is scary but if you hang with the wrong crowd this happens.”

The shooting took place at Sturt Ave, Georges Hall


 

JACK HOUGHTON, LAURA BANKS and DAVID MEDDOWS The Daily Telegraph

A MAN shot dead on a south-western Sydney driveway this morning was a suspect in a gangland hit at a Bankstown shopping centre earlier this year.

Hamad Asaad, 29, who was gunned down in the driveway of a Georges Hall house just before 9.30am, was a suspect in the murder of Walid ‘Wally’ Ahmad, who was gunned down in the carpark of Bankstown Central in April, police sources told The Daily Telegraph.

Ahmad was killed in a hail of bullets when he was ambushed in the midday attack, where two other bystanders were also shot.

Police believe Ahmad’s killing may have been retribution for the murder of Safwan Charbaji earlier in April outside Ahmed’s smash repair shop in Condell Park.

A sheet covers the body of a man gunned down in a driveway in Georges Hall.

A sheet covers the body of a man gunned down in a driveway in Georges Hall.Source:News Corp Australia

Walid ‘Wally’ Ahmad was ambushed and shot dead at Bankstown Central in April. Picture: Seven News

Walid ‘Wally’ Ahmad was ambushed and shot dead at Bankstown Central in April. Picture: Seven NewsSource:Channel 7

CCTV shows the moment Ahmad was shot in the April attack.

CCTV shows the moment Ahmad was shot in the April attack.Source:Supplied

Asaad collapsed in the driveway suffering multiple gunshot wounds about 9.30am. He died a short time later.

There are reports he had been shot in the head.

The man’s body was covered with a white sheet and a large quantity of blood could be seen on the concrete.

Paramedics had worked to save the man but he died at the scene.

Paramedics had worked to save the man but he died at the scene.Source:News Corp Australia

A crime scene was set up and police from the Middle Eastern Organised Crime Squad are involved in the investigation.

The sister of the victim broke down trying to get to her brother.

With tears streaming down her face, the woman begged police guarding the scene to let her in.

“Please, he’s my brother,” she said before being told she could not enter.

The woman ran off towards another distressed person waiting in a car.

Police and paramedics at the scene.

Police and paramedics at the scene.Source:News Corp Australia

A visibly distressed woman was helped from the scene by police and an unknown man..

A visibly distressed woman was helped from the scene by police and an unknown man..Source:News Corp Australia

Police had to earlier hold back this distraught man who was trying to gain access to the crime scene.

Police had to earlier hold back this distraught man who was trying to gain access to the crime scene.Source:News Corp Australia

A man wearing a hoodie was also seen pleading with police to be let into the crime scene, shouting the victim was his brother.

Police were also seen leading an older woman from the scene, but it is unclear if she is related to the man.

Chief Inspector Grant Taylor said the shooting was “targeted” and unfolded in a matter of seconds.

He confirmed the man had ties to Middle Eastern crime gangs.

“He was moving one car out of the driveway when he was shot multiple times,” he said.

“His mother was home at the time. She is hysterical as you can imagine.”

Insp Taylor said the victim was being “observed” by the shooters before the attack.

“The motivation behind this murder is not really known and it would not be the right thing for us to speculate,” he said.

“The family is very distraught.”

An employee of nearby Pool and Spa Warehouse, Robert, told The Daily Telegraph he heard eight to 10 shots, and ran outside to see a car speed from the location.

“We heard the shots going off and walked out and saw I’m pretty sure a black Mercedes fly up the road,” he said.

Police have since confirmed the vehicle was a black Audi sedan.

Robert said it sounded like more than one gun was used in the shooting.

“It sounded like there were six (shots) from one gun and then I heard another shot that sounded like it came from another gun,” he said.

Dozens of police raced to the scene after reports of the shooting.

Dozens of police raced to the scene after reports of the shooting.Source:News Corp Australia

Neighbours said the man moved into the home about six months ago with a wife and young children.
Neighbours said the man moved into the home about six months ago with a wife and young children.
Police from the Middle Eastern Organised Crime Squad are among those at the scene.

Police from the Middle Eastern Organised Crime Squad are among those at the scene.Source:News Corp Australia

His colleague Raj Goundar, 50, agreed.

“I think it was an automatic weapon because it went dudududud really fast,” he said.

“It was not a simple one shot, there were a lot of them.

“It is scary but if you hang with the wrong crowd this happens.”

The shooting took place at Sturt Ave, Georges Hall

The shooting took place at Sturt Ave, Georges HallSource:The Daily


dailymail.co.uk

Man shot dead outside a Sydney house in drive-by attack

  • A man, 29, was gunned down in Sydney’s south-west on Tuesday morning
  • Emergency services were called to a house on Sturt Ave in Georges Hall about 9.20am
  • Paramedics treated the man for multiple gunshot wounds but he died at the scene
  • A black ‘sports type’ sedan was seen leaving the scene, NSW Police said

The victim was a key suspect in the murder of gangland figure Walid ‘Wally’ Ahmad gunned down in April

  •  WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT BELOW 

A man gunned down outside his house in Sydney’s south-west on Tuesday morning was known to police and was believed to be a key suspect in the execution-style murder of a prominent gangland figure.

Hamad Assaad, 29, was shot multiple times in a drive-by shooting on Sturt Ave in Georges Hall at 9.20am.

Police said they believe the victim was leaving his house when two shooters in the back of a black sports car shot him dead in board daylight.

Assaad was a suspect in the shooting of gangland figure Walid ‘Wally’ Ahmad, who was gunned down in April this year, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

Ahmad’s murder at a Bankstown shopping centre was thought to be retribution for the killing earlier that month of another man, Safwan Charbaji.

Scroll down for video 

A man in his 20s has been gunned down outside a house in Sydney’s south-west

He was shot multiple times outside a house on Sturt Ave, Georges Hall, about 9.20am on Tuesday

Police are seen here speaking to onlookers at the scene

The victim was a suspect in the shooting of gangland figure Walid ‘Wally’ Ahmad (pictured)

In 2010 Assaad was charged with murder in another drive-by shooting, relating to a love triangle, but was found not-guilty of killing Mohamad Alahmad, 37.

On Tuesday after Assaad was shot, he was treated by NSW Ambulance paramedics for multiple wounds, however he died at the scene.

‘These individuals obviously wanted to kill him. There’s no doubt about that. He was the target,’ Detective Chief Inspector Grant Taylor said.

The man’s distraught mother was home at the time of the attack, however it is not yet clear if she witnessed her son’s murder.

Ahmad’s murder at a Bankstown shopping centre (pictured) was thought to be retribution for the killing earlier that month of another man, Safwan Charbaji.

Nearby residents and shops said they heard multiple gunshots

A black Audi sedan was seen leaving the scene

Man shot dead in execution-style hit in his Sydney driveway

He was well known to police, and detectives from the State Crime Commisison, Middle Eastern Organised Crime Squad and officers from the south-west Sydney region are investigating.

Officers described the attack as a ‘targeted shooting’, and are currently scouring CCTV footage from businesses and homes in the area.

Photos showed the man’s body laying in the driveway covered by a white sheet, and a large amount of blood could be seen on the concrete beside him.

Police from the Middle Eastern Organised Crime Squad are reportedly at the scene

Officers are seen here speaking to bystanders

A distraught man was held back by friends and police after arriving at the scene

The man was comforted by a friend as police blocked his entrance to the crime scene

Earlier it was reported police were hunting for a black Audi seen in the area, however it was later confirmed they were hunting for a black ‘sports type’ sedan.

A hairdresser at Tamed Hair by Rose, around the corner from the house, heard the gun shots.

‘It does happen but it hasn’t happened quite so close to us,’ Rose told AAP.

‘It was pretty frightening.’

Disturbing footage showed paramedics performing CPR on Ahmad after he was  fatally shot in April 2016

A man was treated by paramedics at the scene of Walid ‘Wally’ Ahmad’s shooting in April for gunshot wounds to his leg before being taken to hospital

An injured bystander after the April 2016 shooting of Wally Ahmad

 

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Two adults, two children and family dog found dead in Sydney suburb of Davidson


Two adults, two children dead found dead in Sydney suburb of Davidson

Updated 47 minutes ago

Photo: Maria Claudia Lutz and her children Elisa and Martin were found dead in their Sydney home. (Facebook: Maria Claudia Lutz)

A family of four, including two children with “significant disabilities”, has been found dead in a home in Sydney’s north, in what police have described as a “tragic” and “horrific” event.

Officers attended the home on Sir Thomas Mitchell Drive at Davidson about 11:20am today following reports concerning the occupants’ welfare.

Northern Beaches Police Superintendent Dave Darcy said officers found a 43-year-old female, a 44-year-old male, a 10-year-old boy and an 11-year-old girl dead at the home.

The family has been identified as Colombian nationals Maria Claudia Lutz and Fernando Manrique, and their children Elisa and Martin.

Superintendent Darcysaid “a large dog” was also found dead at the house.

Superintendent Darcy described the incident as a “tragic” and “horrific thing”. He said “both children suffer a significant disability”.

The ABC understands the children had autism.

“It’s extremely confronting, the officers — we consistently have these concern for welfare cases, and unfortunately in some cases this is what the police are confronted with,” Superintendent Darcy said.

“We have now commenced a thorough investigation, homicide squad are here with us, forensic services group are here.

“And we’re gradually working our way through a very tragic circumstance to get to the bottom of it.”

He said neither of the adults were known to police.

Man hunt not ruled out: police

Superintendent Darcy said the situation was “very serious”.

“Two young children have died, two adults have died, I just want to keep this investigation … untainted so our investigators can clearly and concisely get the information they need to come to the truth of what’s happened,” he said.

“The mother in particular is held in very high regard in the community.

“Since coming to Australia they’ve made a significant contribution to how we live, they’ve done a fantastic job.”

Superintendent Darcy said he was not willing to discuss the cause of death or the nature of any injuries, but did not rule out the possibility of a man hunt.

Asked whether the police would be looking for a suspect he said he wanted to keep his options open on that account.

A section of the leafy suburban road has been cordoned off restricting access to the house.

School, neighbours shocked by death of family

The children went to St Lucy’s primary school in Wahroonga.

Acting principal Warren Hopley said staff were in shock.

“The teachers today … we’re just all very upset,” he said.

“The children had very high complex needs … I don’t think [their mother] slept for many hours of the night because of the difficulties often with the two children.”

Neighbours said the children were lovely and kept to themselves.

Shaun Daley said he was sitting inside watching TV when he heard an ambulance go past.

“I thought nothing big of it — someone’s just hurt themselves or something, I didn’t really think it was quite to this extent, and then police started turning up and it built from there,” Mr Daley said.

“They closed off the road and everyone was trying to find out what was going on, we heard about the family of four and the dog, which was really shocking to hear.

“Davidson’s very quiet, it’s so unexpected, especially around here, very shocking.”

Calvin Barker, another local man, said he was he was saddened by the event.

“Nothing’s really happened, this intense, forever, actually.”

Queensland murder trial of Gable Tostee over NZ tourist Warienna Wright’s death-Jury considers


Gable Tostee has been found not guilty of killing Tinder date Warriena Wright, who fell to her death from his 14th-floor apartment balcony on Queensland’s Gold Coast.

A Supreme Court jury had struggled to reach a verdict, but finally acquitted Mr Tostee of both murder and manslaughter more than 15 hours after beginning its deliberations on Monday.

Live rundown inside court

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Queensland’s biggest trial of the year will begin when Gable Tostee fronts the Brisbane Supreme Court charged with the murder of a New Zealand tourist.

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THE jury in the Gable Tostee trial has asked whether language should be “considered as force” while deliberating the fate of the accused murderer.

The jury’s fourth note to Justice John Byrne was revealed this afternoon.

After Justice Byrne read out the note before the jury, he replied: “The short answer to the question is no”.

“Let me provide some elaboration so that you can be confident that I have addressed the concern that apparently prompts the question,” he said.

“The prosecution does not suggest that it can exclude any of the four defences raised for your consideration that concerned the use the force by the accused in reliance of what he said, as distinct from what he did, in the three particularised episodes.

“That is, the potential availability of the defences is concerned with the physical force used by the the accused in the three acts particularised not with any menace that might have been presented by the words the accused used that accompanied the use of force by him.”

The jury has retired again to deliberate.

EARLIER: The jury in the murder trial of Gable Tostee are entering their third day of deliberations after previously stating they were struggling to reach a unanimous verdict.

Tostee has arrived at the Brisbane Supreme Court this morning.

OVERNIGHT: JURORS in accused balcony ­killer Gable Tostee’s murder trial have been ordered to continue deliberating despite telling the judge yesterday they were unable to reach a verdict.

Justice John Byrne said discharging a jury was a last resort and told them to keep trying.

His direction came after they handed him a note saying they were struggling to reach a decision on Tostee’s innocence or guilt over the death of Warriena Wright, who plunged to her death from his Surfers Paradise high-rise balcony in August 2014.

It was the third note jurors had written to the judge since retiring about 12.30pm Monday.

The other notes related to questions they wanted clarified, including whether to take into ­account Ms Wright’s intoxication and state of mind before she climbed over his balcony and fell.

“I have a note indicating that so far you have not been able to reach a verdict,” Justice Byrne told the jury about 3.10pm yesterday.

“Let me say this, you are entitled to take as long as you wish to reach your verdict.

“I have the power to discharge you from giving a ­verdict, but I should only exercise it if I am satisfied that there is no likelihood of genuine agreement being reached after further ­deliberations.

“Experience has shown that juries can often agree if given enough time to consider and to discuss the issues.”

The jury spent an extra hour late yesterday trying to reach a verdict before asking the judge to send them home for the night.

They had earlier asked the judge to clarify several issues, including Tostee’s age, a long silver item he appeared to be holding as he exited a lift after Ms Wright fell as well as the role of her ­intoxication and state of mind.

In response to another question, Justice Byrne told the jury they must find Tostee not guilty of murder or manslaughter unless they were persuaded beyond reasonable doubt that he used more force than reasonably necessary to remove Ms Wright.

Justice Byrne said putting Ms Wright on to the balcony constituted removing her from the property under a homeowner’s right to eject a disorderly person.

He also repeated his advice on what the jury must find to prove manslaughter and murder.

Jury retires to decide Tostee’s fate

THE jury that will determine whether Gable Tostee killed his Tinder date Warriena Wright in August 2014 has retired to consider its verdict.

The judge presiding over the trial delivered his final directions to jurors this morning, before sending them out to consider their verdict shortly after 12.30pm.

Addressing jurors on a range of arguments that arose at trial, Justice John Byrne urged them not to consider Tostee’s conduct after Warriena Wright fatally plunged from his balcony as any indicator of guilt.

CCTV footage shown to the jury in the trial last week showed Tostee leaving his apartment building by the basement carpark, so as to avoid emergency services who had raced to the scene, in the early hours of August 8, 2014.

CCTV footage of Gable Tostee on the night she fell from his Gold Coast apartment.

CCTV footage of Gable Tostee on the night she fell from his Gold Coast apartment.Source:News Corp Australia

He was then also seen wandering aimlessly around Surfers Paradise for an hour and a half, stopping at one point to buy and eat pizza.

In his final address to the jury today, Justice Byrne said Tostee’s behaviour after Ms Wright died was irrelevant to their deliberations.

“It would be wrong for you to use any of the evidence of what he did as advancing the prosecution case for murder or manslaughter and I direct you not to,” he said.

Ms Wright plunged to her death from Tostee’s 14th floor Gold Coast apartment after Tostee locked her on his balcony.

She was attempting to climb to the balcony below when she fell.

Crown prosecutor Glen Cash argued the 26-year-old was fleeing in “abject terror” after Tostee strangled her inside his apartment. The alleged strangling happened after Ms Wright threw rocks at Tostee.

Gable Tostee leaves the Supreme Court in Brisbane. Picture: AAP Image/Dave Hunt

Gable Tostee leaves the Supreme Court in Brisbane. Picture: AAP Image/Dave Hunt Source: AAP

Defence barrister Saul Holt argued Tostee put an “increasingly erratic” Ms Wright onto the balcony, in a bid to de-escalate a violent situation that had erupted between the pair.

Tostee has pleaded not guilty to both murder and the alternative lesser charge of manslaughter.

Justice Byrne addressed the six men and six women of the jury on a range of issues, including whether or not Tostee intended to cause Ms Wright grievous bodily harm, which caused her to undertake the act that led to he death.

“The burden rests with the prosecution to prove the guilt of the accused,” he said.

“If you are left with a reasonable doubt, your duty is to acquit.”

He also reminded jurors their task was an intellectual one, not an emotional one.

“You should dismiss all sympathy and prejudice, no such emotion has any place in your position,” he said.

“You must approach dispassionately.”


Gable Tostee trial: After Tinder date died, Tostee ate pizza, phoned lawyer

Revealed: Timeline of the final moments

The timeline of the night Gable Tostee’s Tinder date fell 14 storeys to her death reveals the first phone call he made was not to triple-zero, but to a lawyer.

CCTV captures Tostee meeting Wright

Footage has surfaced of Gable Tostee meeting Warriena Wright for the first time only hours before the young woman plunged 14 floors to her death. Vision courtesy Nine Network.

CCTV footage played at Mr Tostee’s murder trial in the Brisbane Supreme Court shows he left the high-rise apartment via the basement car park just after Warriena Wright died in the early hours of August 8, 2014.

The 30-year-old did not call triple-zero, but instead paced around the Gold Coast entertainment precinct for an hour and bought pizza from a Cavill Ave shop, the jury saw.

Phone records tendered in court show the first call Tostee made that morning was to criminal law firm Potts Lawyers at 2.21am, about a minute after the 26-year-old New Zealander had fallen.

He also called his father Gray Tostee at 3.23am to pick him up, lamenting “why does this s— keep happening to me?”.

It was not until later in the car when Tostee exclaimed, “Oh my God, I hope she’s not dead.”

Mr Tostee and Ms Wright’s Tinder conversation tendered in court revealed the pair had a brief exchange of saucy messages before meeting in person.

The Supreme Court was on Tuesday presented with photos of Mr Tostee and Ms Wright taken on Mr Tostee’s phone the night Ms Wright died. Photo: Twitter/7 News

In their initial chat, Tostee told Ms Wright on the app, “You look delicious. I want to do dirty things to you.”

He also asked her whether she was a “freak in the sheets”.

Footage payed in court showed Gable Tostee walking around the Gold Coast entertainment precinct for an hour and ordering pizza after Warriena Wright fell to her death. Photo: Nine News

“Let’s get drunk together, I’m a pornstar after a few drinks!” Tostee said.

Ms Wright was in Australia for a two-week holiday to attend a friend’s wedding.

Mr Tostee leaves Brisbane Supreme Court after day three of this murder trial on October 12. Photo: Tammy Law

It’s not alleged Tostee threw or pushed her, but that he intimidated her so greatly she felt the only way she could escape was to climb down from the balcony after he had locked her out.

In an audio recording Tostee made on his mobile phone, which captured the moment Ms Wright died, he is heard telling his father he put her on the balcony because she was “beating him up”.

Forensic medical officer Nelle Van Buuren told the court Tostee had abrasions on his cheek, nose, shoulder and knee when he was examined on the afternoon of August 8 but was not able to say what caused them or how old they were.

What is thought to be Tostee’s blood was also found on a small, white decorative rock he claims Ms Wright threw at him, the court heard.

DNA expert Emma Caunt said a man’s DNA was found under Ms Wright’s fingernails but could not identify whose it was.

Neighbours have testified at the trial to hearing a woman’s terrified screams as well as a man and a woman arguing, before Ms Wright fell from the 14th floor and ricocheted off balconies below.

The prosecution case is expected to close on Thursday after a Gold Coast pathologist gives evidence.


Timeline of Warriena Wright’s final night

Based on CCTV and audio recording exerts tendered in murder trial

Thursday, August 7, 2014

8:46pm – Gable Tostee and Warriena Wright meet for their Tinder date on Cavill Ave, Gold Coast.

8:50pm – Mr Tostee buys a six-pack of beer from BWS.

8.53pm – They get into lift at his block of units. Last time Ms Wright is seen alive.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Mr Tostee starts recording audio on his mobile phone at 1.05am

2.14am – Mr Tostee: “You have to leave.” Ms Wright: “It’s all good.” Tostee: “You’re f—ing insane.”

2.15am – Mr Tostee: “You’re lucky I haven’t chucked you off my balcony, you goddamn little psycho b—-.”

2.17am – Mr Tostee: “I’m gonna let you go, I’m gonna walk you out of this apartment just the way you are. You’re not going to collect any belongings, you’re just going to walk out. I’m gonna slam the door on you. If you try to pull anything I’ll knock you out, I’ll knock you the f— out.”

Heavy breathing then crashing sound

2.20am – Mr Tostee: “You just don’t understand. Let go! You think if you hit me I’ll just fall down like in the movies?”

Ms Wright: (screaming) “No, no, no, no, no. Just let me go home.”

Mr Tostee: “I would but you have been a bad girl.”

Ms Wright: (screaming) “I want to go home, I want to go home.”

Distant scream followed by loud heavy breathing

2.22am – Mr Tostee: “Shit.” (call goes to voicemail) “Where the f— are my keys?”

2.23am – Gets out of lift on ground floor, paces around, goes back in.

2.25am – Gets out of lift in basement, leaves building via car park.

3.07am – Mr Tostee continues walking around Gold Coast entertainment precinct.

3.11am – Orders and eats pizza from Cavill Ave shop.

Mr Tostee calls father

Mr Tostee: “Hello dad, might have a bit of a situation … I locked her out on the balcony and I think she might have jumped. I’ve been walking around and there’s million cops around my building … I swear to god I didn’t push her. I just chucked her out on the balcony because she was beating me up … why does s— happen to me, I didn’t do anything wrong.”

3.44am – Mr Tostee picked up by father Gray Tostee in car.

Mr Tostee: “Oh my god, I hope she’s not dead.”

AAP


Gable Tostee trial: Supreme Court jury retires to consider verdict in murder case

Updated about 2 hours ago

The jury in the Gable Tostee murder trial has retired to consider its verdict.

Brisbane Supreme Court judge, Justice John Byrne, spent most of the morning summing up the evidence in the Gold Coast man’s trial.

Tostee, 30, has spent the past week on trial accused of murdering New Zealand tourist Warriena Wright, 26, in August 2014.

He has pleaded not guilty to causing Ms Wright to fall from his 14th floor Surfers Paradise apartment balcony.

The pair had been on a Tinder date at Tostee’s apartment, but became involved in a violent altercation.

Ms Wright was locked outside on the balcony shortly before she fell while trying to climb down.

Justice Byrne this morning told the jury the burden of proving the crime rested solely with the crown, and the defence had to prove nothing, let alone Tostee’s innocence.

“You may only draw an inference of guilt if it so overcomes any other possible inference as to leave no reasonable doubt in your minds,” he said.

“If you are left with a reasonable doubt about guilt your duty is to acquit, that is to find the accused not guilty.

“If you are not left with any such doubt, your duty is to convict, that is find him guilty.

“You should dismiss all feelings of sympathy or prejudice.”

He urged the jury to treat “context evidence”, such as CCTV of Tostee leaving his apartment via his basement or wandering the streets alone afterwards, with caution.

“It would be wrong for you to use any of the evidence of what the accused did over this period as advancing the prosecution case on murder or manslaughter.

Crown, defence offer closing addresses

The crown and defence delivered their closing addresses to the jury on Friday, both sides describing an audio recording of the night retrieved from Tostee’s mobile phone as the critical piece of evidence in the case.

Prosecutor Glen Cash QC argued while Ms Wright had probably unlawfully assaulted Tostee just prior to being locked out, his response was disproportionate and unlawful.

He said Tostee’s intimidating conduct left Ms Wright feeling like she had no means of escape other than scaling the balcony.

Mr Cash said the “panic and desperation” in Ms Wright’s voice moments before she fell “[spoke] more powerfully than [he] ever could about the cause of her death”.

But the defence argued the crown case was “nonsensical”, and Ms Wright, who had been erratic and “out of control” during the evening, had essentially decided to “climb to certain death”.

Barrister Saul Holt QC said Tostee had ordered Ms Wright to leave his apartment via the front door, but she hit him with the metal part of a telescope, after which he grabbed her and put her behind the “nearest lockable door”.

He said Ms Wright climbed over the balcony railing just seconds after, something that was neither rational nor reasonably foreseeable.

Mr Holt told the jury it was irrelevant whether they thought it was “weird” or morally questionable for Tostee to record the date, “but thank goodness he did


Court released original Tinder exchanges today. here is how they hooked up

Tostee and Wright’s Tinder exchanges

Tinder messages sent between Gable Tostee and Warriena Wright between August 1-7.

Note: Warriena uses the name “Cletus” in some online profiles.

Tostee: Hey you sexy slack jawed yokel

Warriena: Lol Hey. Had a few people (think) that’s my real name…

Tostee: Is it? Gable and Cletus sitting in a tree…

Warriena: Sounds good lol

Tostee: You look delicious. I want to do dirty things to you

Warriena: That usually work?

Tostee: Haha, not trying to make anything “work”, I’m just saying. Got a problem with that? :p

Warriena: Lol fair enough. I was just asking :p

Tostee: So you’re down with that then? Can you be a freak in the sheets Cletes? (sic)

Warriena: Lol probably not. Depends.

Tostee: What does it depend on?

Warriena: What I’ve had to drink! Lol.

Tostee: Let’s get drunk together, I’m a pornstar after a few drinks!

Warriena: Hah that’s great…

Warriena: U in gold coast?

Tostee: Yup you?

Warriena: Yeah. Just exploring surfers

Tostee: Lol I live in surfers. How long you down for?

Warriena: Till Monday

Tostee: Let’s get together then 🙂 what’s your number by the way?

Warriena: (provides phone number)


Quotes and description from recording of Tostee and Ms Wright:

1:06am Ms Wright: “I know you want to kill me because you told me so.”

1:08am Tostee says he does not think there is anything after death. Tostee: “Throw me off the balcony and that is it. This is it, boom.”

1:19am Music still playing in the background and soft sounds of groaning in background.

1:21am Ms Wright: “You do have to do shit to me.”

1:23am Tostee: “Ow.”

1:29am Tostee: “I don’t like getting beaten up.”

1:36am Tostee: “There is a tonne of your stuff here. Hey I didn’t say you have to leave, I said that you have to stop beating me up.” Heated conversation.

1:36am Ms Wright: “…I will f***ing destroy your jaw. It is not f***ing funny.”

1:38am Tostee: “I should have never given you so much to drink. I thought that we were going to have fun?”

1:39am Tostee: “I don’t deserve this shit, OK. I am a nice f***ing guy.

1:39am Tostee: “Do you even remember what you were doing to me half an hour ago? You were beating me up for no reason.”
Ms Wright: “Exactly.”
Tostee: “You thought it was funny or something. Why were you beating me up?
Ms Wright: “I am gone, I will be out of your hair see you later. I am going.” Ms Wright produces a phone, stating: “See you later.”
Tostee: “You are such a drama queen.”

1:41am Tostee asks if they can “sit down and discuss this”. Ms Wright says she is a freak. Tostee says he is going to have bruises, asks Ms Wright to stay the night. Tostee says he is the most tolerant person she would meet, “but you are just a bit violent”. Tostee offers to cook something, asking Ms Wright if she wants something to eat.

1:48am Ms Wright: “Don’t be a dick, don’t be a dick.”

Tostee: “I’m not being a dick.”
Ms Wright asks if she can go over to the window and have a look.

Tostee: “Don’t jump off or anything.”

Ms Wright: “No.”

2:10am Sounds of a struggle and ruffling sound of recording device.
Ms Wright: “That really hurt my vagina.” More struggling and male laughter.
Ms Wright: “You sound like a faggot.”

2:12am Tostee: “All right I give up, what do you want?” Loud bang. Tostee: “Ow.”

2:14am Tostee: “You are not my kind of girl. That is enough. You have worn out your welcome. You have to leave.”
Ms Wright: “OK, it’s all good.”
Tostee: “You have to leave.”

2:15am Tostee: “I thought you were kidding and I have taken enough. This is f***ing bullshit. You are lucky I haven’t chucked you off my balcony you goddamn psycho little bitch.”

2:17am Tostee: “You’re a goddamn psycho. I am going to let you go. I am going to walk you out of this apartment just the way you are. You are not going to collect any of your belongings you are just going to walk out and I am going to slam the door on you do you understand. If you try and pull anything. I’ll knock you out. I’ll knock you the f*** out. Do you understand? Do you understand? Do you understand?”

Tostee: “Come on Get up. Get up.”

Ms Wright: “I am so sorry.

Tostee: “I don’t care … you don’t understand do you? You don’t understand anything at all, do you? You don’t understand, do you?” Sounds of a struggle. Tostee: “Let go. You think that you hit me and I was going to fall down like in the movies. Let go of it. Let go. Let Go. Let go.”

2:19am Sounds consistent with door unlocking and then female states “No”. Possible sound of glass door being hit.

2:20am Tostee: “Who the f*** do you think you are? Hey?”

Ms Wright: “No, no, no … No! No, no. No.”

Tostee: “You tried to kill me huh? Well why did you try and hit me with that. Huh? Shut your filthy mouth.”

Ms Wright: “No. No. No No. No (screaming).”

Tostee: “It is all on recording you know. It is all being recorded.”

Ms Wright: “No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. Just let me go home.”

Tostee: “I would but you have been a bad girl.”

Ms Wright: “Just let me go home. Just let me go home. Just let me go home. Just let me go home.”

2:21am Faint screaming detected. Tostee heard breathing very heavily. He makes a call on his mobile phone. Tostee: “Shit.”

2:22am Tostee: “Where the f*** are my keys?”

The Gold Coast man is accused of killing Warriena Tagpuno Wright, who he met on the dating app Tinder while she was visiting Australia.

Gable Tostee arrives at Southport court in September 2015.
Gable Tostee arrives at Southport court in September 2015. Photo: Chris Hyde

Ms Wright was on a two-week vacation to attend a friend’s wedding and met Tostee, a carpet layer, at the end of her trip.

The 26-year-old was found dead at the base of the high-rise Avalon Apartments unit in Surfers Paradise in the early hours of August 8, 2014.

Warriena Wright met Gable Tostee on an online dating site while visiting the Gold Coast.
Warriena Wright met Gable Tostee on an online dating site while visiting the Gold Coast. Photo: Supplied

She had fallen from the 14th floor balcony of Tostee’s unit.

Tostee was arrested at his parents’ house and charged with murder the following week.

He has pleaded not guilty and will be represented by high-profile barrister Saul Holt QC.

The Brisbane Supreme Court is expected to be packed on Monday morning when the trial starts before Justice John Byrne.

It is expected to take seven to eight days.

AAP


Warriena Wright’s final tragic hours

Gold Coast Bulletin

THIS is the alleged recording of Gable Tostee and Warriena Wright’s final hours together in his Surfers Paradise apartment.

WARNING: Content may distress.

THE NIGHT TOGETHER

12.56.30am: Music heard. It is James Blunt’s Nights Like These.

12.57am: Male: “Don’t go baby, please.”

12.58am: Drinks poured.

1.02am: Male asks female to come here and chill and have a drink. Repeats to chill, have a drink. Male says that everything on him is good looking. Female: “I am psycho drunk and not to test her.”

1.03.30am: Male: “Shut up or I will make you come again. Female: “Shut up or I will beat you up. You look like Sam.”

1.05.30am: Male: “Do you want to come to my work tomorrow?” Female: “Do you want to come to my family tomorrow?”

Male: “You can help me lay carpet. You can help me tell my mum I am not a loser …”

1.07am: Female: “I know you want to kill me because you told me so.” Reference to dying from smoking.

1.08am: Further conversation about galaxies and travel to Alice Springs. Conversation about religion and gods.

1.09am: Male says that he “doesn’t think there is anything after death”. “Throw me off the balcony and that is it. This is it, boom.”

1.12am: Male: “Don’t touch them. You love them rocks.” Female: “Are you a god?” Male replies that yes he is. He is Zeus. He tells her to relax.

1.13am: Female says she is talking about gods. Male says there are no gods. She again calls him Zeus.

1.14am: Female says she is going to go vampire on his ass. Conversation about Reza. Male: “Stay right there.”

1.15am: Female: “You are dead and I hate you.”

1.16am: Conversation about her dead dog.

Male: “Don’t hurt me, I am defenceless.”

1.19.30am: After minutes of laughing and hitting in the background, male is heard to say “Ow”.

1.20.30am: Music still playing in the background amid soft sounds of groaning.

1.26.30am: Male: “I should walk you home.”

1.27am: Male: “Stop that.” Female: “Oh my god you are like a Christian.” Further inaudible conversations.

1.28.30am: Female: “Don’t be a (expletive) to me.” … Inaudible conversation … Male: “I don’t want to like have to muscle you.”

1.29.30am: Male: “Just relax.” … Inaudible conversation … “I don’t like getting beaten up.” … Inaudible conversation.

1.31am: Male: “Just be nice.” Inaudible conversation. Conversation is calm.

1.33.30: Male: “Come here.” Female: “Have a good night.” Male: “Do you want me to walk you back home.” Moves closer to the recording device. Sounds of ruffling and female is heard to say “have a good night” and male states “no (inaudible) I’ll take care of you in the morning.”

1.35.30am: Music stops.

HEATED ROW:

1.36am: Female: “Where is my sister’s (expletive). Where is all my (expletive) data? Where is my iPhone?” Male: “Do you want me to ring it?” Female: “Yes, I would love you to (expletive) ring it.”

1.36.30am: Male: “There is a ton of your stuff here. Hey I didn’t say you have to leave. I said that you have to stop beating me up.” Heated conversation.

1.37am: Female: “Are you going to (expletive) untie me because I will (expletive) destroy your jaw. It is not (expletive) funny.”

Female: “Get it for me. Male: “No, you get it.” Female: “I am going to call the police.”

1.37.30am: Repeats she is going to call the police.

1.38am: Male: “Cmon Cletus.”

1.38.30am: Female: “I am going to call the police.” Male: “What are you looking for? Where is my money. How are you going to call the police without your phone?”

Female: “You stole my (expletive) phone.” Male: “I should have never given you so much to drink. I thought that we were going to have fun?”

1.39am: Male: “I don’t deserve this (expletive), OK. I am a nice (expletive) guy.” Sound of a beep (phone).

1.39.30am: Male: “Your phone must be out of battery” … “it must be out on the balcony.”

Male: “Please calm down please. You have had too much to drink. I had (expletive) loads of money.” Female states that she “(expletive) rules in New Zealand but she gets taken advantage of. It is not (expletive) funny”.

1.40am: Male: “Do you even remember what you were doing to me half an hour ago?

“You were beating me up for no reason.” Female: “Exactly.” Male: “You thought it was funny or something. Why were you beating me up?” Female: “I am gone. I will be out of your hair, see you later. I am going.” Then produces the phone. Female: “See you later.” Male: “You are such a drama queen.”

1.40.10am: Call to deceased, six seconds.

1.41am: Male asks if we can sit down and discuss this. Female says she is a freak. Male says that he is going to get bruises. He asks the female to stay the night and says he is the most tolerant person he would meet, adding “but you are just a bit violent.” Male offers to cook something. Male again asks if she wants something to eat.

1.45am: Male asks how long the female is living on the Gold Coast. Female: “Geez, god didn’t want me here for long, he has kicked me out already.”

1.45.30am: Female says that “Myjambu did not say anything.” Male asks if it is a Maori god. Calm conversation.

1.46:30: Conversation about Procifany and Greek gods and mythology.

1.48am: Female asks if she can go over to the window and have a look. Male: “Don’t jump off or anything.” Female: “No.” Further inaudible conversation.

1.49am: Male says people with white coats are going to come in and the states that she would jump off the balcony. He says he is totally flattered that his vodka has had this effect on her.

1.49.30am: Male: “Just come here, I just want to cuddle you. Male states I just want to snuggle you. Door shuts and possible toilet seat going down. Possibility that female is in the toilet.

1.51.am: Male whispers into the recording device, “God help me, (expletive).”

1.52.30am: Female calls male a social demon.

1.53am: Male asks if she got the photos he sent her. “Our balcony photos. You are so much more drunker than me. I need to catch up.”

1.53.30am: Ruffling sounds. Drink poured. Male: “That is like vodka on the rocks. That is yours.

1.56.30am: Female: “That is horrible. I am going to leave that there.”

1.57am: Male states that his mum is in Adelaide because his pa died. Died of cancer. Conversation about male finding out about his pop dying.

1.57.30am: Doesn’t think he has been so sad before.

2.02.30am: Female: “UK men are funnier and have bigger (expletive).” Male: “Not bigger than mine.” Conversation continues. Male asks if his is the “biggest”.

2.03.30am: Male: “Hey hey hey, no violence.” Then laughs and says “What are you doing Cletus?” and “enjoy that”. Female: “Cheers.”

2.05.30am: Male tells “Cletus to chill out”. He says “it is not cool here and he will fix that (expletive)”.

Possible pouring, drinking. Male asks to promise that she does not beat him up. Asks her to sleep next to him.

2.09am: Male states that if she “was going to go all kung fu on me then I will kick your (expletive)”. Calm conversation.

2.11am: Sound of a struggle and ruffling sound of recording device. Female: “That really hurt my vagina.” More struggling and male laughing, to which female replies: “You sound like a (expletive)”.

2.12am: Male states she is insane. Sounds of background clicking. Male: “They are not real they are only fake.”

2.12.30am: Male: “Who is Sam.” Says “ow” again, before “I’ll bow down to Sam. I will do what you want. I will be your sex slave (possibly having rocks thrown)”.

2.14am: “That is enough.” Female: “No seriously, I have to have a (expletive).”

Male: You are not my kind of girl. That is enough. You have worn out your welcome. You have to leave. Female says OK, it is all good. Female out of breath. Male states ‘you have to leave’. Female replies ‘OK. It’s all good’. I thought you were a nice girl.

2.14.30am: Male says — Yeah it is you are (expletive) insane.

CHOKING SOUNDS AND THE FATAL PLUNGE

2.15am: Male states I think you are kidding but you are not. Go on right now. Male states — I do need a sample of DNA.

2.15.30am: Male states — I thought you were kidding and I have taken enough. This is (expletive) (expletive). Male states — you are lucky I haven’t chucked you off my balcony you god damn psycho little (expletive). Male states — who the (expletive) do you think you … I am. Yeah do your Muay Thai now.

2.16am: What. What — got something to say- say it. Female breathing heavily. Female states (unintelligible) sexist. Male relies yeah right. I am the one who is injured. You don’t have a god damn scratch on you.

2.16.30am: Male states I thought that you were just playing around but I am (expletive) sick of this (expletive). You’re a god damn psycho. I am going to let you go. I am going to walk you out of this apartment just the way you are. You are not going to collect any of your belongings you are just going to walk out and I am going to slam the door on you, do you understand? If you try and pull anything. I’ll knock you out, I’ll knock you the (expletive) out. Do you understand? Do you understand? Do you understand?

2.17.30am: Cmon, get up. Get up. Female states — I am so sorry. Male states I don’t care. Struggling — male — you don’t understand do ya. You don’t understand anything at all do you. Struggle. Male states ‘let go’. You think that you hit me and I was going to fall down like in the movies. More laboured breathing sounds. Male states let go of it. Let go. Let go. More choking sounds.

2.18am: First choking sounds.

2.18.30am: Still laboured breathing sounds. Breathing slows. Male: “Let it go.”

2.19.30am: Sound of something dropping (metallic)

2.20am: Sound consistent with door unlocking. Female: “No.” Possible sound of glass door being hit.

2.20.30am: Male: “Who the (expletive) do you think you are? Hey?” Female: “No, no, no.”

Male: “You tried to kill me huh?” Male: “Well, why did you try and hit me with that. Huh? Shut your filthy mouth.”

Female: “No, no, no, no, no. (Screaming).”

Male: “It is all on recording you know. It is all being recorded. Female: “Just let me go home.” Male: “I would but you have been a bad girl.” Sound of door sliding shut.

2.21am: “Just let me go home. Just let me go home.” Last words of “just let me go home”. Male heavy breathing. Faint scream detected.

2.21.30am: Very heavy breathing from male.

In documents filed ahead of Gable Tostee’s Supreme Court bail application on Monday, police claim Warriena Wright struggled for breath and was taunted in the seconds before her death.

2.21.50am: Male makes call to lawyer Mick Purcell. Call made from handset. “(Expletive).” Call not connected.

2.22am: Male: “Where the (expletive) are my keys?”

2.23am: “Expletive, expletive, expletive.”

2.23.30am: “Oh my god.” Sound of getting dressed, pulling jeans up.

2.26am: Sound of sirens in the background.

2.26.30am: Sound of lift button.

2.28.30am: Walking noises. Footsteps.

2.39.30am: Walking stops.

2.24.13am: Call to deceased.

2.42am: Walking starts again.

2.47am: Call to Purcell.

2.49am: Screen shot taken of phone with images of deceased. Call to deceased.

3.10.30am: Male: “Um a piece of supreme please.”

3.11.30am: Paper rustling. (Eating pizza).

THE PHONE CALL

3.23am: Makes phone call. “Hello dad. I might have a bit of a situation. See um I met up with a girl for a date tonight and she started getting really aggressive. It was all right at first and like we, you know, had sex in bed and she kept drinking. We were both drinking and I think that she thought that it was like a joke or something and she kept like beating me up and whatever. It was cos she was really drunk and whatever and I like forced her out on the balcony and I think that she might have jumped off.”

Dad: “Oh no.”

3.23.30am: Male: “Like I have been walking around and there are a million cops around my building. I’m (expletive). I don’t know what to do.”

Dad: “Where are you? At your unit?”

Male: “I didn’t cause this, like I didn’t push her. There are a million cops in the area.”

Dad: “I’ll come and get you OK?”

Male: “It is really (expletive) up. I am like at Dominos. Dad, like this is not my fault.”

3.25am: Call continues … “I don’t know, like I tackled her on my floor inside the building and I never forced her over the balcony.”

Dad: I am sure you wouldn’t, mate.”

Male: I don’t know what the (expletive) happened, it is crazy. I swear to god I didn’t push her, I just chucked her out on the balcony and locked the door because she was beating me up.”

Dad: “I’ll come over now OK?”

3.29am: Call continues. Male: Hang on a sec. What the (expletive). What the (expletive) is this … you know how I said there was something in my pocket. Well it is her phone in my pocket.”

Dad: “Is it her phone?”

Male: “It is her phone, yeah … Dad like what happened was we were drinking and we got into bed together then and after that she just kept drinking and she just kept like I don’t know she was just like beating me up. She thought it was funny or something and I was just like tackled her in the middle of my apartment and I said that it wasn’t funny anymore and blah blah blah.

“Then when I let her go the last thing I remember was she was on the balcony and I don’t know if she jumped or what, I don’t know. It wasn’t my fault, it wasn’t my god damn fault.”

3.46.30am: Call made and connected. “Hey dad, are you nearby. I am seriously freezing.

Dad: “Not far away at all. Male: “Can you stay on the line?” Dad: Yep.”

3.47.30am: Sound of car door opening and seatbelt being placed on.

3.48am: Dad: “We need to ring (lawyer) Bill Potts. Male: “I didn’t do anything. Dad: “I understand. Um the only thing we can do is ring Bill Potts up now. You can’t do anything else but that but you need to do it straight away really. Can you find his number?”

3.48am: Male: “I wish that I had cameras in my unit. I have audio. I tried calling her phone.” Dad: “Don’t call her phone.”

3.49am: Call is made to phone and goes to message bank. Dad: “What are you doing, why did you do that?” Male: “I don’t know.”

3.50am: Call to deceased.

3.51am: “Why does this (expletive) always happen to me. I didn’t ask for this. I wasn’t doing anything wrong, I just invited the girl over. The more she drank …”

Dad: “Was she jealous or something?”

Male: “Me and her had sex and it was like the more that she drank she just got violent for some reason. Dad: “Did she want a more serious relationship or something?” Male: “No, she was like I know Muay Thai blah blah blah and I’ll beat you up for fun rah rah rah and I was like tolerating it for a bit and went ‘yeah stop that’. Last thing that I remember was that I tried holding her down and she ran out on to my balcony. I hope I just imagined it.”

3.51.30am: Call to deceased.

3.52am: I might have locked her out on my balcony cos there is like a lock. I can’t remember what I did but I absolutely did not throw her off my balcony. I would never do anything like that.”

3.52.30am: Dad: “We need to ring up Potts.” Male: “I don’t ask for this (expletive). Why does this (expletive) happen to me?”


Six selfies tendered to the Brisbane Supreme Court on Tuesday showed a smiling Warriena Wright and a shirtless Gable Tostee inside his Gold Coast apartment and gave no hint of the tragic events that were about to unfold in the early hours of August 8, 2014.

They were the last pictures taken of Ms Wright before she plunged to her death from Tostee’s 14th floor balcony.

The 30-year-old carpet layer has pleaded not guilty to Ms Wright’s murder.

Gable Tostee and Warriena Wright.Source:Supplied

Source:Supplied

Source:Supplied

Source:Supplied

Police seized the photos from a camera owned by Tostee that was located inside his apartment.

A witness told the court he witnessed the horror of Ms Wright’s death plunge after being alerted by her scream for help.

From his balcony on the 12th floor, Nick Casey looked up to see Ms Wright hanging over Tostee’s balcony, and tried to yell to her to climb back over.

“I heard her say, ‘I want to go home’, I heard her say, ‘help’ and at that point I said to her, ‘go back inside’ and it wasn’t long after that she fell,” he said.

“She fell straight past where I was standing on the balcony and ricocheted off a few balconies below us and kept going to the ground.”

The images were tendered after the jury in Tostee’s murder trial heard audio recordings the accused made which revealed Ms Wright’s terrified screams.

Tostee can be heard breathing heavily after Ms Wright disappears from his Gold Coast balcony.

He can also be heard attempting to make a phone call that goes unanswered.

He then apparently leaves the apartment building and calls his father, Gray, to come and pick him up.

“Hello Dad, I might have a bit of a situation,” he says.

After explaining what happened, he goes on, “She kept beating me up and whatever and, um, I locked her out on the balcony and I think she might have jumped off.

“There’s a million cops around my building, I’m f***ed.

“I don’t know what to do.

“I didn’t cause this, I didn’t push her or anything.

Warriena Wright. Picture: Police MediaSource:Supplied

Police re-enactment of the circumstances leading to Warriena Wright’s death. Picture: AAP Image/Dan Peled/Queensland Supreme CourtSource:AAP

“I’m just walking around the area and there’s a million cops around the area.”

Tostee sounds calm throughout the conversation with his father.

When the elder Tostee comes to collect him, he asks if he needs to go to hospital.

“Why,” his son asks.

“Well, it’s traumatic,” he responds.

Tostee explains to his father that he and Ms Wright had watched a movie and had sex throughout the course of the evening but that she drank heavily.

“The last thing I remember is trying to hold her down and she ran out onto the balcony. I hope I just imagined it,” he says.

“I might have locked her on the balcony … I absolutely did not throw her off my balcony. I would never do anything like that.”

Despite the police presence around his apartment building, Tostee apparently did not yet know Ms Wright had died.

“God, I hope she’s not dead,” he says. “What if she’s dead? What if she jumped?”

His father replied, “Don’t worry. There’s nothing you can do about that.”

“This is so f***ed up. Why has this happened to me,” he asks.

As he continually attempts to call his lawyer, Tostee can be heard fearing he does not have proof he did not push Ms Wright off his balcony.

“I do have photos of me and her, like, selfies. But I don’t know if I have any proof of her being aggressive,” he says.

“The truth comes out,” his father replies. “It will.”

The jury in the murder trial earlier heard the last chilling moments of Ms Wright’s life, as the accused killer allegedly locked her on his balcony after she was growing increasingly aggressive.

“No, no, no, no, no. I want to go home. Just let me go home,” she is heard saying on the audio.

“I would, but you’ve been a bad girl,” he replies.

Ms Wright’s screams pierced the courtroom, as she appeared to be begging for her life.

Tostee can be heard asking a slurring Ms Wright to leave his apartment, in an increasingly threatening tone.

“You goddamn psycho bitch. I’m going to let you go, I’m going to walk you out of this apartment, just the way you are,” he says.

“You’re not going to collect any belongings. I’ll slam the door on you. You’re not going to pull anything or I’ll knock you the f*** out.”

A muffled scuffle ensues between the pair, in which Ms Wright repeatedly cries, “no, no, no no” and “I want to go home. Just let me go home.”

The noise is silenced by the sound of a sliding door, which fits with the Crown’s contention that Tostee locked her on his 14th floor balcony.

Within moments, the 26-year-old had fallen to her death.

The prosecution alleges the 26-year-old was fleeing in terror from Tostee when she attempted to climb over this balcony to the one below.

Hairdresser Emily Ellis also watched from the 12th floor balcony as Ms Wright fell.

“She was in a hanging position but … I wasn’t able to make out what she was doing,” she said

“I said (to another person in the apartment) I couldn’t work out what she was doing, I said I don’t know what she’s doing and she fell.”

The trial continues before Justice John Byrne.

Police photograph of Gable Tostee’s 14th floor Surfers Paradise apartment. Picture: AAP Image/Dan Peled/Queensland Supreme CourtSource:AAP

Yesterday the first part of the explosive audio recording was played in court, capturing Ms Wright’s final hours in Tostee’s Gold Coast apartment.

It revealed the New Zealander was drunk, at times incomprehensible and repeatedly violent to the man charged with her murder.

“I’ve met some weird people on Tinder,” the 30-year-old murder accused was heard to say, as the drunk Ms Wright apparently swings in and out of violent episodes towards him.

The trial, before Justice John Byrne, is continuing.


AN EXPLOSIVE audio recording played in court that captured Warriena Wright’s final hours in Gable Tostee’s Gold Coast apartment has revealed the New Zealander was drunk, at times incomprehensible and repeatedly violent to the man charged with her murder.

“I’ve met some weird people on Tinder,” the 30-year-old murder accused is heard to say, as the drunk Ms Wright apparently swings in and out of violent episodes towards him.

The first part of the secret recording Tostee made of the 26-year-old New Zealander was played to the jury in his murder trial on Monday afternoon.

Ms Wright plunged 14 floors to her death off Tostee’s apartment on August 8, 2014.

The Crown has argued Ms Wright was fleeing for her life when she tried to climb down offTostee’s balcony to the level below and lost her grip. Images of a police re-enactment of Ms Wright’s legs dangling off the balcony were tendered to the court yesterday.

Tostee has pleaded not guilty to the murder charge.

A police re-enactment of the scene below Tostee’s apartment as Ms Wright tries to climb down.Source:Supplied

In the expletive-laden tape, which runs for more than three hours, Tostee is heard to repeatedly try to calm Ms Wright down as she becomes aggressive and lashes out at him.

At one point, she accuses him of stealing her phone.

“Where’s my f***ing s***? My f***ing data,” she says.

Asked what it looks like, she yells, “it looks like a f***ing iPhone”.

Ms Wright insists on leaving, but Tostee tries to stop her.

“I didn’t say you have to leave, I just said stop beating me up,” he said.

She asks him again where her things are.

“I will f***ing destroy your jaw. It’s not f***ing funny,” she says.

“Look that’s your stuff right there,” he replies.

“Get it for me. Get it for me. Get it for me,” she yells.

“I’m calling the police, get it for me. Get it for me now.

“I’m going to call the police and they are going to come here. I’m going to call the police … You stole my f***ing phone.”

“I didn’t,” he protests.

“I should never have given you so much to drink.

“I don’t deserve this s***, I’m a nice f***ing guy.”

Police photograph of Gable Tostee’s 14th floor Surfers Paradise apartment. Picture: AAP Image/Dan Peled/Queensland Supreme CourtSource:AAP

Ms Wright was on a two-week holiday in Australia when she matched with the then 28-year-old carpet layer, who lived in his father’s Surfers Paradise apartment.

The couple spent the evening of August 7 in the apartment, drinking and having sex, before a final confrontation was followed by Tostee locking her on his balcony.

Soon after, she plunged 14 floors to her death.

An audio recording of Warriena Tagpuno Wright reveals she was apparently drunk before she fell to her death of a 14th-storey balcony.Source:Facebook

The downstairs neighbour testified that she was woken by something that sounded like furniture being thrown around the apartment above her, before hearing a panicked woman crying, “No, no, no”.

She opened her own balcony door to see Ms Wright’s legs dangling before her, then watched in horror as she fell to the driveway below, clipping her balcony rail in the fall.

Ms Wright died of extensive head injuries.

The 30-year-old displayed no emotion in the dock of the Brisbane Supreme Court on Monday, as the audio of him and Ms Wright was played for the jury.

To the background sounds of James Blunt and Kanye West, among others, Tostee is heard to profess an apparently healthy self-confidence, when Ms Wright compliments his good-looking feet.

“I know, everything’s good looking with me,” he tells her.

“But I won’t look like that if you keep beating me up. I’ll look like tenderised meat.”

At one point, Ms Wright tells him the decorative rocks on his coffee table are gods, before apparently throwing them at him.

Police photograph of inside Gable Tostee’s apartment. Tostee is accused of murdering New Zealand woman Warriena Wright. Picture: AAP Image/Dan Peled/Queensland Supreme CourtSource:AAP

He tells her he gave her too much to drink, but it apparently does not dull his attraction to his Tinder date.

“I’m totally flattered my vodka has done this to you,” he says to her.

“You’re kind of mental but really cute in a way.”

As opposed to his date, Tostee sounds relatively sober, which he acknowledges.

“You’re so much drunker than me, I need to catch up,” he says.

The trial, before Justice John Byrne, is continuing.

Gable Tostee (Eric Thomas) appearing for the death of Warriena Wright. Picture: Annette DewSource:News Corp Australia

Gable Tostee: Screaming, shouts of ‘no’ captured prior to Warriena Wright’s balcony fall, court hears

Updated Tue at 4:38pm

Gable Tostee arriving at the Supreme Court for the opening day of his trial. (AAP: Dan Peled)

An audio recording of a fight between Gable Tostee and the woman he is accused of murdering includes noises “consistent with her being choked or strangled in some way”, a Brisbane court has heard.

Tostee today pleaded not guilty to murdering New Zealand tourist Warriena Wright on the Gold Coast in August 2014.

Ms Wright, 26, fell from a balcony located on the 14th floor of a Surfers Paradise apartment block.

Tostee, 30, was living in the apartment at the time.

The Supreme Court trial is underway after a jury was empanelled this morning.

Opening the crown case, prosecutor Glen Cash said Ms Wright and Tostee first made contact on the dating app Tinder on August 1, 2014.

They arranged to meet in Cavill Avenue on Thursday August 7 about 8:45pm, went to a bottle shop to buy beer and then went to Tostee’s 14th floor apartment in the Avalon building.

Mr Cash said the crown would allege that over the next few hours they drank alcohol and were intimate before an altercation occurred in the early hours of Friday morning.

He said a key piece of evidence was an audio recording of the events leading up to Ms Wright’s death, made on Tostee’s phone.

He said of particular interest was the altercation that happened prior to her being locked on the balcony.

Mr Cash said the recording would be played and included noises “consistent with her being choked or strangled in some way”.

The court would “hear noises of her screaming, shouting ‘no’,” he said.

“The defendant was inside the apartment having locked Warriena outside on the balcony.

“The defendant did not throw Warriena over the balcony, he did not push her over the balcony.”

Mr Cash said they would allege Ms Wright had no other means of escaping other than climbing over the balcony, and she fell to her death when she tried to do so.

Defence lawyer disputes choking claim

 Tostee’s barrister Saul Holt QC disputed the suggestion Ms Wright was choked or strangled.

He told the court there was no evidence this occurred, arguing Tostee had merely restrained Ms Wright in self-defence.

Mr Holt said during the altercation Ms Wright had become “increasingly erratic” and had thrown rocks at Tostee and hit him with a parts from a telescope.

Mr Holt said Tostee had repeatedly asked Ms Wright to stop and asked her to leave, and the recording would show that.

He said it was within the law for someone to use reasonable force to defend themselves or their property.

“It is a desperate tragedy that Warriena Wright died,” Mr Holt said.

“This is a case where what happened is relatively straightforward.”

More than 20 witnesses are expected to testify before Justice John Byrne.

Tostee was granted bail in November 2014 on the condition he lived with his parents, refrained from using online dating sites and received treatment for a diagnosed alcohol problem.


Tiahleigh Palmer: Foster father Rick Thorburn charged with murder over schoolgirl’s death


 BTW I have heaps of Video and court Docs just waiting to post  legally

Inside the idyllic rural property where 12-year-old Tiahleigh Palmer’s spent 10 months before her murder

au.news.yahoo.com

Child safety service not told Tiahleigh Palmer’s foster father was ‘person of interest’ for months

Yahoo7 News on September 28, 2016, 5:53 am

Tiahleigh Palmer’s foster father and accused killer Rick Thorburn was permitted to run a daycare business for five months after the schoolgirl’s death despite being a person of interest in the investigation, it has been revealed.

Queensland’s Department of Child Safety and Education were not notified that Thorburn was a person of interest in the case until April 2016, and the 56-year-old held a blue card until then, The Courier Mail reports.

Tiahleigh, 12, disappeared on October 30 when Thorburn claimed he dropped her off at school and she failed to come home.

Tiahleigh’s remains were found on a riverbank in November 2015.

Her body was discovered five days later, washed up on the bank of the Pimpama River.

Police told News Corp last week that Thorburn was a person of interest “from day one”, however the child safety authority was not notified until April, Minister for Child Safety Shannon Fentiman confirmed.

Rick Thorburn has been charged over Tiahleigh’s murder. Photo: Supplied.

The department was told the Logan man was also facing allegations relating to an 11-year-old girl and four-year-old girl, the Courier Mail reported.

“In April, police notified my department and the Department of Education and Training of alleged criminal activity. This was the first time that concerns were raised about the Thorburns,” Ms Fentiman said last week.

Thorburn was charged over Tiahleigh’s murder and taken into custody on September 20, six weeks before the one-year anniversary of her disappearance.

Trent Thorburn was reportedly bashed twice in prison since his arrest. Photo: Supplied.

His son and Tiahleigh’s foster brother Trent Thorburn is also in custody accused of having an incestual relationship with the girl in their Chambers Flat home.

The 19-year-old dancer has reportedly been bashed twice by fellow inmates since being held in the Arthur Gorrie Correctional Centre.

The Queensland Government ordered a review into the foster care system and blue card services the day after the arrests.


IT WAS a house of misery where Tiahleigh Palmer spent 10 months of her life before her murder.

The schoolgirl was placed with former truck driver and muscle-car enthusiast Rick Thorburn and his family in the house on an isolated stretch of road at Chambers Flat, a rural pocket of strawberry farms and horse paddocks in the Logan area south of Brisbane.

The seemingly idyllic 2ha property where Tiahleigh made her new home with the Thorburn family is modern, with two bathrooms, a swimming pool, rolling green lawns and horses in the yard.

But inside the four-bedroom brick house just eight minutes from where Tiahleigh was last seen attending her high school, the young girl was allegedly preyed on by her foster brother Trent Thorburn.

The house in Chambers Flat in a rural area where Tiahleigh Palmer spent her last months in 2015.

The house in Chambers Flat in a rural area where Tiahleigh Palmer spent her last months in 2015.Source: Supplied

An occasional truant, Tiahleigh was well-liked at school.

An occasional truant, Tiahleigh was well-liked at school.Source :News Corp Australia

Tiahleigh Palmer attended school minutes from the Thorburn’s property.

Tiahleigh Palmer attended school minutes from the Thorburn’s property.Source:News Corp Australia

Tiahleigh came to live with the Thorburns, Rick and Julene and their sons Trent and Josh in the isolated family farmhouse south of Brisbane before she was murdered.

Tiahleigh came to live with the Thorburns, Rick and Julene and their sons Trent and Josh in the isolated family farmhouse south of Brisbane before she was murdered.Source: Supplied

The 19-year-old, who lived with his brother Josh, 20, and mother Julene has been charged with incest while Rick Thorburn, 56, has been charged with Tiahleigh’s murder.

Not all was well with the Thorburn family. Following a serious back injury which forced him to give up his job as a truckie, Rick Thorburn had tried a number of jobs to feed his family.

A car enthusiast, he had sold vehicle and engine parts from the property.

He was also a devotee of American culture and came up with the idea to sell US food from a truck he drove to festivals and other events in the Logan area.

A month after Tiahleigh moved into the Thorburn’s home, Rick Thorburn took his food van — which he named Nothing Healthy Here — and travelled around with his sons Trent and Josh selling hot dogs, hot jam doughnuts, churros and pancakes from the van.

This is the house in Flesser Rd at Chambers Flat where Tiahleigh lived with her foster parents.

This is the house in Flesser Rd at Chambers Flat where Tiahleigh lived with her foster parents.Source:News Corp Australia

The swimming pool at the house rented by the Thorburns.

The swimming pool at the house rented by the Thorburns.Source: Supplied

Rick Thorburn, at his Chambers Flat home before his arrest. Picture: Liam Kidston

Rick Thorburn, at his Chambers Flat home before his arrest. Picture: Liam KidstonSource:News Corp Australia

“We saw the quality of food at other places and decided we could do it bigger and better. We try to keep it unique and we have food you can’t get anywhere else,” he told the Jimboomba Times.

Mr Thorburn said he looked forward to being able to provide guests with a good old-fashioned feed.

“We do sell one healthy thing – water,” he joked in September last year.

Mr Thorburn made the comments almost eight weeks before Tiahleigh Palmer vanished.

While she lived with the Thorburns, Tiahleigh had been attending Marsden State High School, where Chaplain Ian Pratt said she was a free spirit who passionately threw herself into a range of creative pursuits.

The seventh grader was also described as “not always perfect” and an occasional truant from classes, but there was no suggestion of the alleged abuse that was unfolding at her new foster home.

Tiahleigh, 12, lived on the property which is among farms and horse paddocks south of Brisbane.

Tiahleigh, 12, lived on the property which is among farms and horse paddocks south of Brisbane.Source: Supplied

Rick Thorburn had lost his trucking job after a back injury and was selling American fare from a food truck. Picture: Liam Kidston

Rick Thorburn had lost his trucking job after a back injury and was selling American fare from a food truck. Picture: Liam KidstonSource:News Corp Australia

Tiahleigh Palmer allegedly kept a terrible secret while living at the Thorburn home and attending the local school.

Tiahleigh Palmer allegedly kept a terrible secret while living at the Thorburn home and attending the local school.Source: Supplied

The Thorburns property looked idyllic, but police allege Tiahleigh was being abused while she lived there.

The Thorburns property looked idyllic, but police allege Tiahleigh was being abused while she lived there.Source: Supplied

Tiahleigh had been placed with the Thorburns after spending a happy three years with a foster mother in Gympie, just over 200km north of the Chambers Flat house where she spent her final months.

The schoolgirl lived with Julie Pemberton in the Logan area for years until December 2014, when Ms Pemberton decided to stop acting as a foster carer.

Tiahleigh had been removed from the care of her biological mother, Cyndi Palmer, who was

in and out of police custody with drug problems between 2011 and 2013.

During that time Tiahleigh had experienced some of the lows of the Queensland foster care system, in which she sometimes stayed with carers for as little as 24 hours before being moved to another home.

Despite living in foster care, Tiahleigh remained close to her mother.

The 12-year-old lived with the Thorburns at this house between January and October last year before she was murdered and her body dumped.

The 12-year-old lived with the Thorburns at this house between January and October last year before she was murdered and her body dumped.Source :Supplied

Police divers found Tiahleigh’s shoe but not her uniform after fishermen discovered her body floating in the Pimpama River. Picture: QPS

Police divers found Tiahleigh’s shoe but not her uniform after fishermen discovered her body floating in the Pimpama River. Picture: QPSSource: Supplied

Rick Thorburn, above before his arrest, at the gate of the property his family shared with Tiahleigh Palmer. Picture: Channel 9

Rick Thorburn, above before his arrest, at the gate of the property his family shared with Tiahleigh Palmer. Picture: Channel 9Source: Supplied

At the time Ms Pemberton gave up her role as a foster carer and Tiahleigh was placed with the Thorburns, Cyndi Palmer had been trying to regain custody of her daughter.

Following Tiahleigh’s murder, Ms Pemberton said that Cyndi Palmer had “got it together” and that she “might have made a few mistakes but she is lovely and absolutely adores her daughter”.

Cyndi Palmer has posted on Facebook that she had endured an “evil” 2011, but had turned her life around but had “learned from it and … well prepared and educated for making 2012 the start of everything I want it to be for my family and I”.

But Tiahleigh’s return to her mother’s care never happened.

After almost a year with the Thorburns and allegedly involved in an incestuous relationship with her foster brother, Tiahleigh was dropped off at Marsden High School at 8.10am on October 30 by Rick Thorburn.

Witnesses say she entered the school briefly, but then left.

Six days later, fishermen found Tiahleigh’s badly decomposed body floating in the Pimpama River, 30km south of where she was last seen.

Police divers found one of Tiahleigh’s shoes, but her school uniform and pink backpack were missing.

Queensland Police have also charged Tiahleigh’s foster mother Julene Thorburn and her son Josh with perjury and attempting to pervert the course of justice.

Rick Thorburn is in hospital in an induced coma after an alleged attempt at self harm following his arrest.


Tiahleigh Palmer’s 19-year-old foster-brother told a cousin he’d had sex with the 12-year-old and was worried she was pregnant, a court has heard.

In successfully keeping Trent Jordan Thorburn behind bars, prosecutors argued he had deliberately misled and lied to police throughout the 11-month investigation into the alleged murder of the Logan schoolgirl.

Foster brother admitted sex

The foster-brother of Tiahleigh Palmer is refused bail, charged with incest and lying to police. 7 News Queensland

Police prosecutor Sergeant Ellen French alleged a Facebook Messenger conversation between Mr Thorburn and his cousin two days before Tia went missing showed him disclosing that he’d had sex with her.

“He says he had sex with the victim on the prior Monday and he had only done so because she had threatened to kill his dog,” Sergeant French said, of a conversation that was allegedly handed over to police.

“The defendant said he was concerned about her being pregnant…” she told the court.

“The defendant further outlines the victim had spoken to his mother about it.”

Mr Thorburn’s defence lawyer John Ide argued he should have been granted bail on charges including incest considering his age, lack of criminal history and potential time behind bars awaiting trial.

“He’s a young man with no criminal history whatsoever,” he said.

Trent Thorburn.
Trent Thorburn.  

“In my submission it couldn’t be said he’s an unacceptable risk of any of the things that’s asserted by the prosecution.”

Sergeant French told the court Mr Thorburn had denied any involvement or sexual conduct with Tia on five separate occasions and colluded with his family to mislead police.

Tiahleigh Palmer's mother Cindy waits with supporters outside court.
Tiahleigh Palmer’s mother Cindy waits with supporters outside court. Photo: Glenn Hunt

“Eventually the defendant has admitted to the authorities that he had lied on multiple occasions in order to conceal the  sexual intercourse between himself and Tiahleigh,” she said.

A friend of Tia’s told police the young girl had approached her about a month before her alleged murder, saying “Trent tried to touch me”, Sergeant Ellen alleged.

Former foster carers Cameron and Wayne Pemberton speak to media outside court.
Former foster carers Cameron and Wayne Pemberton speak to media outside court. Photo: Glenn Hunt

“She further said that the victim claimed to have disclosed this to her foster-mother,” she said.

Mr Thorburn has been charged with incest, perverting the course of justice and two counts of perjury relating to Crime and Corruption Commission hearings in July and September this year.

Cindy Palmer arrives at the Beenleigh Magistrates Court on Wednesday morning.
Cindy Palmer arrives at the Beenleigh Magistrates Court on Wednesday morning. Photo: Jorge Branco

Prosecutors argued he was “highly likely” to interfere with witnesses and “would attempt in every way shape and form to evade and avoid every risk” of imprisonment.

Magistrate Pamela Dowse kept Mr Thorburn behind bars, saying he was “not a candidate for bail at this point in time” but another application could be made in the future.

Tiahleigh Palmer.
Tiahleigh Palmer.  Photo: Supplied

Outside court, Mr Ide said he would consider applying to the Supreme Court for bail.

Police allege Mr Thorburn’s father, Richard Thorburn, killed Tia in an attempt to cover up his son’s alleged crime.

Richard Thorburn has been charged with the murder of his foster child.
Richard Thorburn has been charged with the murder of his foster child. Photo: Jorge Branco

The alleged killer was remanded in custody after his matter was heard on Wednesday morning as he remained in an induced coma in hospital after collapsing in the watchhouse on Tuesday.

EARLIER

A member of Tiahleigh Palmer's foster family arrives at Logan police station on Tuesday.
A member of Tiahleigh Palmer’s foster family arrives at Logan police station on Tuesday.  Photo: Glenn Hunt

The man accused of murdering Queensland schoolgirl Tiahleigh Palmer and dumping her body in a Gold Coast river is in an induced coma and won’t appear in court before a crowd of her mother’s supporters.

Foster father Richard Neville Thorburn, 56, was due in the Beenleigh Magistrates Court on Wednesday morning, ahead of an application for bail by his son on related charges.

But the father remained in the intensive care unit at the Princess Alexandra Hospital on Wednesday, after collapsing in the watchhouse on Tuesday afternoon.

Defence solicitor Kelly Thompson, from Robertson O’Gorman solicitors, told the court she’d spoken with doctors at the hospital.

“He’s currently in an induced coma and there’s no indication as to when he might be brought out of that at this stage,” she said.

A crowd of people expecting the appearance packed Beenleigh courtroom, leaving standing room only for a host of people due to appear on other matters, with supporters flanking Tia’s biological mum, Cindy Palmer.

Among them were Tia’s former foster father Wayne Pemberton and his son Cameron, who paid tribute to the “good girl”.

Wayne said the “feisty” 12-year-old lived with them for two and a half years and described his “total shock” at hearing the man who cared for Tia after him had been accused of her murder.

“You don’t expect that from a carer,” he said.

“That’s not what you’re here to do.

“To hear that and for everyone in the family to (allegedly) be involved it’s just unthinkable.”

Ms Palmer declined to comment as she made her way into the courthouse in suburban Beenleigh, just off the highway roughly halfway between Brisbane and the Gold Coast.

Wayne, who remembered Tia’s love of waterskiing and other watersports, said it couldn’t be said Ms Palmer was happy but she was glad of an outcome.

Trent Jordan Thorburn, 19, has been charged with incest, perjury, and attempting to pervert the course of justice. He’s due to appear in court on Wednesday.

He was set to apply for bail after midday in a hearing his lawyer indicated would take about 45 minutes.

Richard Thorburn’s hearing went ahead without him and was adjourned for a committal mention on December 21.

He won’t be required to appear, meaning Ms Palmer again won’t have a chance to come face to face with her daughter’s alleged killer.

Mr Thorburn told police he dropped his foster daughter off at school about 8.10am that morning but police will allege that was a lie.

They’ll allege he instead murdered the 12-year-old at the family home in the Logan suburb of Chambers Flat on the night of October 29, before dumping her body in the river that night or the next.

The killing was sparked by a discovery made that night, which led Mr Thorburn to kill the girl in an attempt to cover up a crime Trent had committed against Tia, police will allege.

The younger brother was charged with incest, among other alleged crimes.

A missing person alert for Tia wasn’t put out until November 5, hours before her badly decomposed body was found on the banks of the Pimpama River.

The delay drew criticism, sparked wide-ranging changes to authorities’ responses to missing children in care and further condemnation from Wayne Pemberton on Wednesday as “very frustrating”.

“It’s not a good thing to have to wait around for someone to put an alert out but it finally got done,” Cameron said.

“It should have got done quicker. It shouldn’t have taken so long.”

Another supporter, who didn’t know the family, said she was “disillusioned” with the government’s handling of children in care.

Being charged with murder, Mr Thorburn must apply for bail to a higher court if he wants to be released.


The younger son, Trent, 19, described himself as a dancer, metal fabrication apprentice, and classic car builder.

Police believe the teenager sexually abused Tiahleigh. He was denied bail on charges for incest, perjury and attempting to pervert the course of justice in court this afternoon.

In court, the prosecutor argued he “took advantage of (Tiahleigh) as her big brother and as a result her young life has been taken”.

The foster brother was concerned he had impregnated the child, the court heard. Police are expected to allege the boy’s father killed Tia to cover for his son.

THE foster family at the centre of allegations into the death of Tiahleigh Palmer buried the Brisbane schoolgirl in a heartfelt ceremony attended by more than 600 people last November.

Back then, Rick Thorburn, 56, Tia’s foster father and accused killer, appeared to hold back tears as he solemnly carried her child-sized coffin, acting as a pallbearer.

He blended in to the crowd of purple, Tia’s favourite colour, which mourners had chosen to wear to pay tribute to the young girl. The colour also became a symbol of commitment to the desperate search for answers over what had happened to her.

His shirt read “in love memory of Tiahleigh R.I.P.” At the service, he comforted her grieving mother.

The truck driver turned food van proprietor and his wife had taken in Tia as a foster child while her biological mother, Cyndi Palmer, worked to get her life on track after struggling as a teen mum and spending time in the prison system.

Tiahleigh Palmer.Source:AAP

Tiahleigh Palmer.Source:Supplied

She lived with the couple and their two adult sons in their Chambers Flat home where Thorburn’s wife Julene, 54, also ran a home daycare service.

The eldest of the two boys, Josh, 20, was qualified to work as an assistant in the home business and had been unemployed in recent years while recovering from injury.

The younger son, Trent, 19, described himself as a dancer, metal fabrication apprentice, and classic car builder.

Police believe the teenager sexually abused Tiahleigh. He was denied bail on charges for incest, perjury and attempting to pervert the course of justice in court this afternoon.

In court, the prosecutor argued he “took advantage of (Tiahleigh) as her big brother and as a result her young life has been taken”.

The foster brother was concerned he had impregnated the child, the court heard. Police are expected to allege the boy’s father killed Tia to cover for his son.

A facebook photograph of Rick Thorburn and family Josh, Julene and Trent. Rick and Trent have been charged in relation to the murder of Tiahleigh Palmer.Source:Facebook

A Crime Stoppers tip led police to swoop on the family on Tuesday, arresting Rick, Julene, Josh, and Trent at various addresses in the Logan area.

Following police interviews Rick was yesterday formally charged with Tia’s murder. Trent, the youngest of Tia’s foster brothers, has been charged with incest.

Julene and Josh have been charged with one count each of perjury and perverting the course of justice.

All four family members are awaiting court, Trent’s today and Julene’s and Josh’s next month, though father Rick’s has now been delayed. The murder-accused was expected to face a bedside hearing at Brisbane’s Princess Alexandra Hospital, but is in an induced coma following a suspected self-harm attempt while in custody.

When his case returns to court, now scheduled for December, police are expected to allege the foster father murdered the girl in his car to protect his teenage son according to the Courier-Mail. Police will allege Trent sexually abused Tia.

Trent Thorburn was Tiahleigh’s foster brother.Source:No Source

Trent Thorburn, 19, has been charged with incest, perverting the course of justice and perjury in relation to the death of Tiahleigh Palmer.Source:No Source

Tia’s foster father and relatives have long been persons of interest throughout the 11-month investigation of the schoolgirl’s disappearance and murder, senior police sources told the Brisbane paper.

Less than a month after Tia’s death, the foster father published a post on Facebook saying the family had accommodation for one or two people in their “happy home environment on acreage”.

He described the residence as a clean and safe home.

The case has prompted the Queensland government to review the approval process for foster carers and working with children checks.

Acting Premier Curtis Pitt says both will be examined by extending a review already under way, with a report expected back early next year. “We will be very, very careful to ensure that the young people who are in our foster system as well as, of course, the broader child protection system are given all the protections,” he said.

Announcing details of the review, Child Safety Minister Shannon Fentiman confirmed the foster parents continued to run a child care business from their home after Tia’s death.

Tiahleigh’s mother, Cyndi Palmer at Beenleigh court on Wednesday where Rick Thorburn was due to appear. Picture: Liam KidstonSource:News Corp Australia

Tia went missing at the end of October last year. Her foster father was reportedly the last person to see her alive, dropping her off near Marsden State High school just after 8am on October 20.

Despite calls for action from her biological family, Tia wasn’t reported missing for six days. The delay was explained away at the time as taking care with concerns around identifying a child in care.

The same morning an alert was distributed by police appealing for help finding the girl, a trio of fishermen discovered her semi-naked decaying body on the banks of the Gold Coast’s Pimpama River.

The water and dirt had washed away any signs of what had happened to Tia, and police had few clues to work with while going about investigating how she had died.

Investigators were worried they may never solve the case.

Tia’s biological mother and grandmother were outspoken in appealing for witnesses and calls to Crime Stoppers from members of the public who may have seen or heard anything that could assist with finding out what happened to their little girl.

But her foster family was silent.

Foster father Rick Thorburn has been charged with murder. He is in an induced coma in a Brisbane hospital. Picture: Jack TranSource:News Corp Australia

Again speaking out, Tia’s grandmother Sue Palmer last night revealed her shock and anguish over the Thorburn family’s charges.

She said the news had “knocked the wind right out of my sails”.

“When it happens to your own it just is like a twisted knife in your heart,” she told A Current Affair on Tuesday.

“I’m just absolutely addled with thoughts of how she died, and that’s something that I really want to know.”

Ms Palmer criticised the Thorburn family’s behaviour following Tia’s death, which was made all the more alarming following yesterday’s allegations.

“They took pride of place at the funeral which I didn’t think they deserved and people treated them as though they were parents of long standing which they weren’t,” she said.

“It’s really really scary. It’s awful trying to raise little girls and boys nowadays. You can’t fix kids once you’ve wrecked them. You can’t fix Tiahleigh.”

Ms Palmer said she gained no relief from the arrests and charges, bringing her and the rest of Tia’s family closer to finding answers.

“To be really truthful it’s not a relief at all, it’s not even closure, it’s pain on pain,” she said.

Rick Thorburn remains in an induced coma and is due to face court on charges of murder and interfering with a corpse in December. His son Trent will face Beenleigh Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday charged with incest, perjury and perverting the course of justice. He is expected to apply for bail.

Thorburn’s wife Julene and other son Josh have both been charged with perjury and perverting the course of justice, and have been bailed to return to court on October 10.

20/09/2016 Update
2016-09-20_16-13-36
a charge of incest has also been laid against one of the young males arrested.
tiahleigh-palmers-foster-father-has-been-arrested-over-the-schoolgirls-murder-9news

Tiahleigh Palmer’s foster father Rick Thorburn has been charged with murder over the 12-year-old’s death, hours after he and his wife were arrested by homicide detectives south of Brisbane, police say.

Thorburn arrived at Logan police station in handcuffs just before 11:30am.

His wife Julene Thorburn arrived at the police station separately a short time later.

Less than two hours later, Detective Inspector Damien Hansen emerged from the police station to tell the media Thorburn would be charged with murder at the Beenleigh Police Station watch house.

“He will be appearing in court tomorrow,” Inspector Hansen said.

Earlier today, homicide detectives arrested four people in connection with the murder investigation.

“A woman aged 54, as well as three men aged 19, 20 and 56 were taken into custody by officers attached to Operation North Mizzen — a joint Homicide and Logan District investigation,” a police statement said.

“All four are known to each other and were located at various addresses in Logan.”

The ABC understands the two younger men also arrested are related to the Thorburns.

The arrests came shortly after police confirmed Tiahleigh’s foster father was the former owner of a car seized by police last week.

The 12-year-old’s body was found on the banks of the Pimpama River last November, almost a week after she vanished.

A week ago, detectives seized a 2009 blue-coloured Ford XR6 sedan they believed was linked to Tiahleigh’s murder.

Police said last week the car’s current owner was not considered a suspect.

Today, Detective Inspector Damien Hansen confirmed Thorburn was the car’s former owner.

His link to the investigation had been revealed in the media, which Inspector Hansen said could have hindered the progress of detectives.

“It didn’t help us,” he said.

Inspector Hansen admitted the investigation had moved quickly in the past 24 hours.

“Due to certain factors we’ve moved quicker than than we possibly would have wanted to,” he said.

Car still under forensic examination

He said police had received no further information in relation to the car since it was seized.

“We’ve looked at every person who had involvement with Tiah in this investigation,” Inspector Hansen said.

He declined to say what police, if anything, had found in the car.

“It’s still being examined,” he said.

He said detectives had also updated Tiahleigh’s biological mother on the investigation.

“She’s comfortable with our response at this stage,” Inspector Hansen said.

“But I will take the opportunity to say that also with the family that there are certain times we can’t pass on information, when the information is at a critical stage.

“It’s possibly been one of the most difficult investigations I’ve been involved in.”

Bali police murder: British man David Taylor admits to hitting officer with beer bottle


Bali police murder: British man David Taylor admits to hitting officer with beer bottle, lawyer says

23/08/16

A British man accused of the murder of a police officer in Bali has confessed to hitting the man with a beer bottle and an old mobile phone, his lawyer says.

Key points:

  • Taylor’s lawyer said his client had wrestled with the police officer
  • Lawyer also said the couple burned their clothes
  • Connor’s lawyer said she was not involved in the murder

After almost 12 hours of interrogation, David James Taylor dramatically changed his story and told police he had struggled with the officer and admitted to punching him, although his lawyers said he could not remember how many times.

Taylor and his Australian girlfriend Sara Connor, a 45-year-old mother of two from Byron Bay, have been detained for allegedly murdering local policeman Wayan Sudarsa.

He was found with 42 wounds to his body, including his head and neck, on Kuta Beach.

Taylor’s lawyers said he had asked the policeman where Connor’s missing bag was, and after he had tried to check the man’s pocket, they had begun to “wrestle”.

“When he is struggling with this man apparently he found this bottle and then he is trying to hit this man with this bottle,” Taylor’s lawyer Erick Sihombing said.

“He found an old cell phone, he hit the guy’s head on the back maybe twice. There is a bottle and an old phone.

“After the fight was done, he went out on the street, he found his girlfriend on the street and then he’s just said to his girlfriend the bag has already gone so let’s go back to the hotel.”

Taylor also confessed that he and Connor burned their clothes.

“On Friday the 19th of August, they found on their clothes and trousers a stain of blood and hair, that’s why they tried to get rid of them by burning their clothes,” Mr Sihombing said.

The Australian woman has told police when she had tried to separate the men while they were fighting, the police officer bit her on her thigh and hand.

She said she had no idea the police officer was dead and her boyfriend had told her he was just unconscious.

“According to the result of the investigation today, Sara said that she was not involved in this murder, she was not involved at all with this murder,” her lawyer Erwin Siregar said.

“Sara tried to separate David and the victim, but she could not do it and then because of that the victim bit the right hand of Sara and also the leg on the left side.”

 

Officer also hit with binoculars, lawyer says

Earlier, Taylor’s lawyer had said he had also bashed the man in the head with a pair of binoculars that were hanging around his neck.

“During the wrestle, Sara tried to keep them apart during which David saw they’re were binoculars on the victim’s neck. Then he smashed the binoculars to the victim’s head,” Mr Sihombing said.

“He hit the cop’s head twice using the binoculars.”

Connor and Taylor both faced questioning late into the evening on Monday.

It is understood Connor and Taylor first met in Byron Bay, where Connor runs a pasta-making business and Taylor hosted a weekly radio show.

Police have up to 100 days to build their case against the two, who face a maximum of 15 years in jail.

From other news sites:

Damning ABC Four Corners report into the mistreatment of teenage prisoners-Don Dale detention centre

Despicable, we have seen this overseas and thanked GOD it could never happen here. I think by the immediate actions of the Federal Government in calling and Royal Commission says a lot. Disgusting, if this is how my child might be treated if he committed crimes in NT, bloody hell, help us all! NO human deserves to be treated as a DOG or worse. NO matter what

I am compiling all the videos so they can be seen together, folks. Appalling, never in my dreams did I think we treat anybody like this. ALL these kids are underage.No matter what they did or why they are there we as a society are not violent. I personally am not surprised the individuals shown reacted they way they did. It is a matter of survival! At least a dozen clips on the way stay tuned


Despicable, we have seen this overseas and thanked GOD it could never happen here. I think by the immediate actions of the Federal Government in calling and Royal Commission says a lot. Disgusting, if this is how my child might be treated if he committed crimes in NT, bloody hell, help us all! NO human deserves to be treated as a DOG or worse. NO matter what…(Robbo)

I am compiling all the videos so they can be seen together, folks. Appalling, never in my dreams did I think we treat anybody like this. ALL these kids are underage.No matter what they did or why they are there we as a society are not violent. I personally am not surprised the individuals shown reacted they way they did. It is a matter of survival! At least a dozen clips on the way stay tuned (Robbo)


NT Government counter-sues boys who were tear-gassed at Don Dale

29/07/16

The Northern Territory Government is counter-suing two boys who were tear-gassed by prison guards at the Don Dale Youth Detention Centre.

The boys, whose names have been suppressed by the Northern Territory Supreme Court, lodged papers in June this year seeking damages for alleged mistreatment at the hands of staff at the facility.

But the NT Government’s response, filed on July 4, is seeking damages for an escape attempt in which the two boys stole a car, before using it to ram a roller-door and re-enter the prison.

The Government claims the two boys escaped from Don Dale on May 31, 2015, causing $89,000 in damage.

It also claims the boys caused $74,025.60 damage when they rammed a roller door at the prison using a stolen car on June 1, 2015.

The NT Government is seeking damages with interest and legal costs.

Both boys, and four others who are not being counter-sued, are seeking damages for the now-infamous tear-gassing incident in the old Don Dale centre as well as a string of other claims.

The writs filed by the boys seek general, aggravated and exemplary damages to “deter and punish” the NT Government.

One of the prisoners suing is Dylan Voller, who was the prisoner strapped to a restraint chair for hours with a spit hood placed over his head.

Another is Jake Roper, who was the boy who got out of his cell in the behavioural management unit of the old Don Dale centre, which instigated the tear-gassing of all prisoners in the area.

Here is the whole video in one go.I do prey that in the interests of the publics right to know and to educate our country I do NOT get a strike.

John Elferink sacked from Corrections in wake of Four Corners report; Adam Giles alleges culture of cover-up

Updated 19 minutes ago

NT Chief Minister Adam Giles has sacked his Corrections Minister John Elferink in the wake of the damning ABC Four Corners report into the mistreatment of teenage prisoners, while alleging there has been a “culture of cover-up” within the Corrections system.

Key points:

  • John Elferink remains as Mental Health Minister, Attorney-General
  • Adam Giles alleges cover-up of video evidence
  • Staff seen in Four Corners report still in Corrections system

John Elferink, the minister responsible for young detainees in the Northern Territory, has been sacked in the wake of the damning ABC Four Corners report into the mistreatment of teenage prisoners.

At a press conference today, NT Chief Minister Adam Giles announced he had taken over the portfolios of Corrections and Justice from Mr Elferink.

“Can I start by saying that anybody who saw that footage on television last night on Four Corners would undoubtedly describe it as horrific footage. I sat and watched the footage and recognised horror through my eyes,” Mr Giles said.

He said the footage aired in the Four Corners report had been withheld from him, Mr Elferink and “many officials in government” — with him only seeing it for the first time “on television last night”.

“I think over time there has most certainly been a culture of cover-up within the Corrections system,” he said.

“I think there’s been a culture of cover-up going on for many a long year. The footage we saw last night [went] back to 2010 — and I predict this has gone on for a very long time.”

He said his government had been “working very hard to try and fix many of those issues”.

“What we’re changing is a culture of an organisation within the youth detention system and I think we’ve come a long way in that time. That’s not to discredit any of that terrible footage we saw on Four Corners last night. It was terrible footage but we’re seeking to improve the system,” Mr Giles said.

When asked if he personally was comfortable with children being strapped into restraint chairs, Mr Giles refused to answer definitively.

“We’re going to have a look at that as part of the royal commission. We will have a review into that. I can’t talk about individual cases,” he said.

“There are kids who are trying to deliberately cause cranial issues by bashing their head against the wall.

“Prison officers need the ability to be able to de-escalate issues when children are not in … a calm environment within themselves and at all times those kids’ wellbeing is being put at the best possible place.

“Having said that, there is certainly footage last night, particularly the footage dating back to 2010, 2012 and 2014 where I don’t think the standards have been upheld.”

Mr Giles said the Northern Territory community was “sick of youth crime … they have had a gutful”.

“They’ve had a gutful of cars getting smashed up, houses getting broken into, people being assaulted. There’s no doubt. And the majority of the community is saying let’s lock these kids up,” he said.

 

Some staff from footage still with corrections

The Acting Commissioner of Corrections Mark Payne, who took over in 2015, admitted some staff seen in the Four Corners report were still working with NT Corrections.

“A number of the staff, particularly those who have become the subject of previous investigations, a number of those staff members are no longer with us in the organisation. They’ve either been terminated in their employment or have chosen to resign,” Mr Payne said.

“A number of staff members who may have been implicated to sustain charges, criminal or internal, remain with us.

“There were only two staff members identified in footage last night that still remain within the youth justice sphere.”

Asked if he held any concerns for the welfare of youth detainees, Mr Payne said he did not.

“I have no concern and, in fact, I should remind the public that we have the Children’s Commissioner and their staff come in to our facilities once a week,” he said.

“We have representatives and our elders visiting program coming into the facility.

“We invite people in tours of the facility so as I stated previously, when I came into the organisation I found certainly a different place and its certainly a different place today in 2016 to what was identified in the footage last night.”

Elferink office target of attack

Asked where the Mr Elferink was, Mr Giles answered: “I don’t know.”

“I imagine he’s are probably in his office. I’ve advised John that I am assuming the Corrections responsibility immediately and that occurred five minutes before I walked into this office,” he said.

Mr Giles said Mr Elferink would retain his other portfolios, including Health, Children and Families and Mental Health.

This morning, Mr Elferink’s Darwin electoral office was the target of a vandal graffiti attack with police attending the scene.

Mr Elferink is yet to speak publicly since the Four Corners report, in which he is featured offering ABC journalist Caro Meldrum-Hanna a lift on his motorcycle to the Don Dale area where the so-called “riot” took place in 2014.

The ABC revealed the riot never happened and was concocted by prison authorities as an excuse for the use of tear-gassing of six boys.

The report has resulted in Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull today announcing a royal commission into the Northern Territory’s juvenile justice system.


Evidence of ‘torture’ of children held in Don Dale detention centre uncovered by Four Corners

Video: LANGUAGE WARNING: Watch the video obtained by Four Corners (ABC News)

Vision of the tear-gassing of six boys being held in isolation at the Don Dale Youth Detention Centre in Darwin in August 2014 has been obtained by Four Corners, exposing one of the darkest incidents in the history of juvenile justice in Australia.

The vision is part of an investigation featuring a chilling catalogue of footage revealing a pattern of abuse, deprivation and punishment of vulnerable children inside Northern Territory youth detention centres.

The tear-gassing incident was described as a “riot” at the time, with media reporting multiple boys had escaped their cells in the isolation wing of the prison, known as the Behavioural Management Unit (BMU), and threatened staff with weapons.

But CCTV vision and handy-cam recordings made by staff, obtained exclusively by Four Corners, show only one boy escaped his cell after it was left unlocked by a guard.

Former corrections commissioner Ken Middlebrook last year defended the officer’s actions in the wake of a damning report by the Northern Territory Children’s Commissioner.

“I am not in the business of overuse of force. There were two sprays from an aerosol in the area. Now it wasn’t overuse of gas,” Mr Middlebrook told the ABC at the time.

But CCTV vision from the incident shows 10 bursts of tear gas being sprayed into the enclosed area over the space of one-and-a-half-minutes.

All six boys were exposed to the tear gas, five while still locked in their cells.

Not all the children were misbehaving — two boys can be seen on CCTV calmly playing cards before being exposed to the fumes. Another can be seen repeatedly smashing the wall of his cell with a broken light fitting.

The 14-year-old boy who escaped his cell can be heard repeatedly asking how long he had been in isolation and requesting to talk to staff.

Instead of negotiating with the boy, prison staff can be heard laughing and mocking him, calling the boy “an idiot” and a “little f****r”.

Four Corners has managed to track down several of the boys who were tear gassed. They describe being highly distressed, afraid for their lives, and say that two years on they are now suffering from disturbing flashbacks and nightmares from the ordeal.

The CCTV vision also shows the children’s reactions as they are affected by the gas, running to the back of their cells, hiding behind sheets and mattresses, gasping for air, crying, and bending over toilets.

One boy is left in his cell and exposed to tear gas for eight minutes. He is seen lying face down on the floor with his hands behind his back, before being handcuffed by two prison officers wearing gas masks and dragged out of his cell.

‘Ticking time bomb’ of potentially unlawful solitary confinement

The use of tear gas at the Don Dale Youth Detention Centre in 2014 came after months of tension, repeated escapes and incidents at the centre, which was staffed with under-trained Youth Justice Officers, in what has been described as a “ticking time bomb” by former staff.

Three weeks before the tear-gassing incident, five boys had escaped from Don Dale.

When they were recaptured, they were placed in the isolation wing of the prison for between 15 and 17 days, in what were described by both children and staff as appalling and inhumane conditions.

They were kept locked in their cells for almost 24 hours a day with no running water, little natural light, and were denied access to school and educational material.

The boys being kept in isolation were accidentally discovered by a group of lawyers, including solicitor Jared Sharp, when they were taken on a tour of the facility in August 2014.

“We all sort of looked at each other in shock that there was kids in these cells, because there was signs of life in there but we didn’t know who was in there or what was happening, or how long they’d been there,” Mr Sharp told Four Corners.

“To what extreme is that, is to my view is torture. To my view that is treating kids in a way that is just entirely unacceptable,” he said.

Human Rights Lawyer Ruth Barson said the isolation of the children was a clear violation of the United Nations Convention against Torture.

“The UN’s expert on torture has said there are no circumstances that justify young people being held in solitary confinement, let alone prolonged solitary confinement,” Ms Barson told Four Corners.

“I think the NT and in particular Don Dale has a long way to go to ensure their practices are compliant with Australia’s obligation on the convention against torture and against the right of the child.”

Government says improvements made

In the days after the tear gassing, NT Corrections Minister John Elferink praised the actions of his staff and the prison security dog used on the night of the incident.

“I congratulate again, and place my support behind, the staff who made this decision. The staff worked hard, Fluffy the Alsatian worked hard and, as far as we are concerned, it was a problem that was solved quickly,” Mr Elferink told Parliament.

In the wake of the incident, the Don Dale centre was closed and the children were moved to the run-down, old Berrimah adult prison.

The NT Government commissioned an independent report into the incident by former Long Bay prison boss Michael Vita, which was released in January 2015.

Mr Elferink told Four Corners the Government had learned from the mistakes of the past.

“It was a system that needed improvement. It was a system that had fundamental problems, which is why I’ve worked so hard to improve it and it has been improved,” he said.

“That was a circumstance that clearly demonstrated to me that something had to be done, which is what the Vita Report was all about.

“Those circumstances have now been changed… we hope that they won’t be repeated.”

NT Children’s Commissioner Colleen Gwynne confirmed to Four Corners there are still ongoing issues with youth detention in the Northern Territory, with many of her 2015 report recommendations still not implemented.

“The response has not been as urgent as we would have liked. The issues raised in that report are extremely serious and I would like to see a more full response,” she said.

“[We need] some urgency and some dedicated resources thrown at this.”

Woman and baby boy in 20th-floor death plunge-Murder Suicide

Woman and baby boy in 20th-floor death plunge: ‘Gut-wrenching scream’ as woman, 31, jumps from balcony of her luxury Melbourne apartment holding 4-month-old ‘believed to be her son’


Woman, child die falling from internal balcony from Docklands apartment

Police tape marks the scene where a woman and child died after a balcony fall in Melbourne’s CBD. Picture: Yuri Kouzmin

Wes Hosking, Anthony Dowsley

A WOMAN and a four-month-old baby have died after an apparent fall from an apartment balcony in Melbourne’s CBD.

The pair were found just after 10.30am in an apartment building at the corner of Bourke and Spencer Streets.

Family are at the scene with one yelling “oh no” when told of the news.

It is understood the woman, 31, plunged from a balcony high in the City Point building.

Police are with distraught family. The deaths are not being treated as suspicious.

The bodies of a woman and child were found just after 10.30am. Picture: Yuri Kouzmin

The bodies of a woman and child were found just after 10.30am.

The exact circumstances of where the child was are unknown at this point.

It is believed the woman may have been residing above 20th floor.

Paramedics entered the building to attend to someone who may have become distressed about 1.30pm.

Later, a family could be seen talking with police and social workers in the foyer of the building just before 2pm.

A priest earlier entered the building to console family, and the coroner is on the scene.

A senior police officer has told media they will not be making any comment about the circumstances surrounding the tragedy, but police confirmed the ages of the pair in a statement.

“A 31-year-old woman and a 4-month-old child were located deceased at an apartment building in Docklands this morning,” a statement read.

The Melbourne CBD location where a mother and child have died in a horror fall.

The Melbourne CBD location where a mother and child have died in a horror fall.Source:Herald Sun

The pair are believed to have fallen from an internal apartment balcony. Picture: Yuri Kouzmin

The pair are believed to have fallen from an internal apartment balcony.


A resident, Alex Champ, said he was unaware of the incident. He said families, children and travellers stayed in the high rise.

“You get all people and young ones (living here), he said. “There is an internal area where there is a drop.

“It’s just crazy to think it’s just a few floors above me.”

A small section of the east bound Bourke street lane has been reopened by police near where it meets Spencer St.

Police are working to identify the mother and child. Picture: Yuri Kouzmin

Police are working to identify the mother and child.

Police have been speaking to staff at the Chocolate Frog Cafe, which is in an older building which fronts the tall apartment complex behind it.

Earlier Victoria Police spokesman Alistair Parsons said: “Police are currently at an apartment building on the corner of Bourke and Spencer Streets in Docklands where a woman and a child were located.”

“The yet to be identified woman and child died at the scene,’’ he said.

“At this early stage it is believed they may have fallen from an internal balcony.”

The exact circumstances surrounding the incident were yet to be determined.

Police have cordoned off the area and are speaking to witnesses.

Paramedics were called to the area but could not assist the pair.

If you or anyone you know is struggling, please contact Lifeline on 13 11 14

The pair died near the corner Spencer and Bourke Streets. Picture Yuri Kouzmin <br />

The pair died near the corner Spencer and Bourke Streets.

Originally published as Woman, baby die in balcony fall


Woman and baby boy in 20th-floor death plunge: ‘Gut-wrenching scream’ as woman, 31, jumps from balcony of her luxury Melbourne apartment holding 4-month-old ‘believed to be her son’

 

  • Woman and baby plunged to their deaths from a balcony in Melbourne
  • The four-month-old boy is believed to have been her son
  • The father ‘collapsed in shock’ when he arrived at the Docklands building
  • Emergency services were unable to revive the woman, 31, and baby
  • The pair’s identities are yet to be determined as investigations continue

Witnesses heard a ‘gut-wrenching’ scream as a woman, 31, and a four-month-old baby boy died in an apparent murder-suicide when they plunged to their deaths from a balcony in central Melbourne.

The woman was carrying the baby, believed to be her son, when she took her own life at the City Point apartment building on the corner of Bourke and Spencer Streets in Docklands.

Police confirmed they were not looking for anyone else in relation to the deaths and a report would be prepared for the coroner

Witnesses heard 'gut-wrenching' screams after a woman, 31, and a four-month-old baby died when they plunged to their deaths from a balcony in central Melbourne. Police speak to a witness

Witnesses heard ‘gut-wrenching’ screams after a woman, 31, and a four-month-old baby died when they plunged to their deaths from a balcony in central Melbourne. Police speak to a witness

They say the pair fell from a balcony inside the 35-storey building about 10.30am on Thursday and died at the scene.

Police have also said a damaged balcony was not the cause of the woman and baby’s fall.

Their bodies were discovered in a courtyard of the building, where apartments have sold for more than $400,000.

The 31-year-old woman lived on the 20th floor with the baby boy’s father who is said to be devastated, according to Herald Sun.

He collapsed in shock when he arrived at the scene and was taken to hospital, 7 News reported.

Police are looking to establish if she had leapt to her death from a sixth-floor balcony, according to the ABC.

She is believed to have been holding the baby at the time.

Witness Christine Harms told The Age she heard someone yell out, ‘Oh no, oh no’, after the incident.

‘A lady went into the alleyway and then there was some screaming,’ Ms Harms said.

‘It was gut-wrenching to hear.’

The woman was carrying the baby when she took her own at the City Point apartment building on the corner of Bourke and Spencer Streets in Docklands. Pictured are police at the scene

The woman was carrying the baby when she took her own at the City Point apartment building on the corner of Bourke and Spencer Streets in Docklands. Pictured are police at the scene

Police say the pair plummeted from a balcony inside the 35-storey building about 10.30am on Thursday and died at the scene

Police say the pair plummeted from a balcony inside the 35-storey building about 10.30am on Thursday and died at the scene

Relatives and friends visited the apartment block early on Thursday afternoon.

A man who knew the woman said they were left shocked by the incident, adding: ‘We don’t know what happened.’

A Victoria Police spokesperson said initial investigations led them to believe the pair fell from an ‘internal balcony’.

‘The exact circumstances surrounding the incident are yet to be determined,’ she said.

Police were unable to confirm the relationship between the woman and baby.

Paramedics were also called to the scene but they were unable to revive the pair, a Victoria Ambulance spokeswoman told Daily Mail Australia.

More than a dozen uniformed and plain-clothed police and eight police cars closed off the scene – at one of Melbourne’s busiest intersections – with some taking bagged items out of the building.

Investigators started to leave shortly after 3pm and the footpath at the front of the building was reopened as police tape was removed.

Traffic detours were in place until about 1.30pm.

For confidential help, call Lifeline at 13 11 14 or Beyond Blue on 1300 224 636.

Pictured is an apartment inside the City Point building on Bourke Street

Pictured is an apartment inside the City Point building on Bourke Street

She reportedly lived on the 20th floor but police are looking into if she leapt to her death from a sixth-floor balcony. Above is an image of another apartment at City Point

She reportedly lived on the 20th floor but police are looking into if she leapt to her death from a sixth-floor balcony. Above is an image of another apartment at City Point

The foyer inside the City Point building, where apartments have sold for more than $400,000

The foyer inside the City Point building, where apartments have sold for more than $400,000

The family of the woman, who lived on the 20th floor, are said to be devastated by the tragedy. Pictured is the City Point apartment building

Online dating site victim conned out of $127k, Robyn Clare Pearce jailed for 14 months-Has form


Robyn Clare Pearce jailed for 14 months-Has form so why a shitty short sentence.What about repayment, no remorse she will get out after learning a few more scams in jail to get out there and  rip them off for more money more often. Get real

Sandford woman Robyn Clare Pearce walks from the Hobart Magistrate's Court.
Sandford woman Robyn Clare Pearce walks from the Hobart Magistrate’s Court.

Online dating site victim conned out of $127k, Hobart woman jailed for 14 months

A Hobart woman had been jailed for 14 months for conning $127,000 out of a New South Wales man she met through an online dating site.

Robyn Clare Pearce, 62 of Sandford, pleaded guilty to dishonestly acquiring a financial advantage.

Pearce met the 60-year-old retired public servant online in August 2007 and by October that year was spinning elaborate lies to get him to lend her money.

He did so on 122 occasions, lending a total of $127,000.

She gave him several reasons for needing money, including legal fees incurred pursuing her ex-husband for child maintenance, furnishing a flat and buying a car for her daughter and paying for her elderly mother’s medical treatment.

In truth, Pearce spent the money on gambling.

The court heard Pearce put $2 million through poker machines at Wrest Point Casino between July 2007 and December 2010.

By November 2008, her victim was selling assets to fund the loans to her.

Victim sold home after mortgage default threat

He extended his mortgage but the retiree was unable to keep up with the payments.

When his bank threatened to default on the mortgage, he sold his house and moved into a modest home in rural Victoria.

The court heard Pearce repeatedly promised she would move there to join him and would get a job to pay him back.

But Pearce’s physical and mental health meant she knew at the time she was making promises that she would never be able to keep.

Justice Helen Wood accepted that Pearce did not befriend the man with the intent to defraud him.

“I accept that the relationship the defendant had with the complainant was a friendship and she valued that,” Justice Wood said.

“She did not set out to prey on him.” I say absolute bullshit to that

History of similar offences

But Justice Wood said Pearce had taken advantage of her victim’s kind and generous nature and spun him elaborate lies repeatedly in order to convince him to lend her money.

Pearce had originally also been charged with defrauding a 92-year-old American man she met through a Christian dating site of about $122,000 between 2011 and 2015.

But that charge was dropped after her plea of guilty in the current case.

In 2012, she was jailed for convincing a Queensland man she met through a dating site to part with almost $80,000.

The court heard Pearce had previously also received suspended, or partly suspended sentences, for other dishonesty matters.

She was sentenced to 14 months’ jail for the latest offending, with Justice Wood noting Pearce’s anxiety and agoraphobia, and her poor physical health, would make the sentence more burdensome for her.

Pearce will not be eligible for parole until she has served seven months.


Online love fraudster Robyn Clare Pearce behind bars after fleecing lonely NSW man of $127,000

A GAMBLING-addicted Sandford woman has been jailed for defrauding a lonely pensioner of more than $120,000 in an online love scam.

Robyn Clare Pearce, 62, pleaded guilty to dishonestly obtaining a financial benefit by deception.

In the Supreme Court in Hobart this morning, Justice Helen Wood said Pearce met a 60-year-old New South Wales man through an internet dating site in August 2007.

Although the pair never met, they exchanged messages and Pearce asked the man for money to pay bills.

After he transferred $1500 to her account, she continued to make demands every few days for money for medical care, to buy a vehicle or furniture and to pay debts.

When he tried to refuse her demands, Pearce became insistent. In all she received $127,000 from the man.

A lonely NSW man targeted in an online dating scam was relieved of $127,000 by a Tasmanian woman, who has been jailed for fraud.

Justice Wood said as a result of Pearce’s actions, the man had been forced to sell his home and move to a more modest abode in rural Victoria — holding out hope that she would move to be with him.

He had been left in financial trouble, depressed and socially isolated by her actions and had trouble trusting people, the court heard.

Pearce had lost $200,000 after putting $2 million though the poker machines at Wrest Point Casino, Justice Wood said.

The judge noted Pearce has a long history of fraud offending and had breached three suspended sentenced by her actions.

She said the offending has taken advantage of the victim’s kind and generous nature and Pearce’s moral culpability was high, despite a number of mental and physical problems which made prison a tough environment for her.

She sentenced Pearce to 14 months in prison, with a seven month non-parole period.

Pearce was also accused of stealing $122,000 from a 91-year-old American man she met via a Christian dating website but those charges were discontinued by the Crown.


Sandford woman Robyn Clare Pearce pleads not guilty in Hobart court to alleged online dating fraud

A SANDFORD woman has pleaded not guilty to fraud offences relating to an alleged internet dating scam.

Robyn Clare Pearce, 61, appeared in the Hobart Magistrates Court this morning.

She is charged with dishonestly acquiring a financial advantage.

Police allege Ms Pearce defrauded tens of thousands of dollars from a 64-year-old New South Wales man between April 2011 and January this year.

Magistrate Simon Cooper granted Ms Pearce bail and ordered her to appear in the Supreme Court on June 9.


Woman admits internet ‘love fraud’

Updated 16 Oct 2012, 10:40am

Sandford woman Robyn Clare Pearce walks from the Hobart Magistrate's Court
Sandford woman Robyn Clare Pearce walks from the Hobart Magistrate’s Court

A Hobart court has ordered a woman to seek counselling after she convinced a Queensland man to give her nearly $80,000 over the internet.

Robyn Clare Pearce from Sandford in southern Tasmania admitted dishonestly acquiring money from a Queensland man she met through an internet dating site in 2007.

During a three-year phone and email relationship, Peace convinced the man to lend her nearly $80,000.

The Hobart Magistrates Court heard she made up a variety of reasons for borrowing the money but never paid it back.

She also got the man to falsely email that she had repaid some of the money.

Pearce was sentenced to 10 months’ jail for dishonestly acquiring a financial advantage relating to $22,600.

Eight months of her sentence was suspended, provided Peace is of good behaviour and undergoes psychological treatment.

She also has to pay back the money.