The jury in Gabel Tostee’s murder trial has told the judge it’s having trouble reaching a unanimous verdict.
The case has had unprecedented media attention, something highlighted by the defence.
Joseph Ogilvie reports.
It began on August one 20-14, when Gable Tostee and Wahreena wright made a fateful match on dating app Tinder.
Exchanging messages until the evening of August seven when they arranged to catch up in Surfers Paradise.
The New Zealand tourist fell to her death from the balcony of Tostee’s apartment in the early hours of the next morning after a date gone wrong.
Eight days later … Tostee was charged with murder.
His trial began over a week ago with unprecedented coverage.
The intense media scrutiny was highlighted by the prosecution today with some talk of the jury even being dismissed due to some reports.
And it wasn’t just Australian media but international press too.
Sophie Lowery, TV3 NZ Journalist: “There’s been a huge amount of coverage of this case in New Zealand, it’s led our news bulletins every night, so that’s almost seven nights now”
The case has resonated across the ditch.
Sophie Lowery, TV3 NZ Journalist: “He was obviously the Gold Coast Playboy, so many New Zealanders live in Australia now so I think everyone feels kind of connected to this story, and also the fact Wahreen Wright was from Lower Hutt in Wellington, she’s a local girl”
The jury started deliberating yesterday.
Today they asked Justice John Byrne several questions around evidence, including if they should consider Ms Wright’s intoxication levels at the time of her death.
Six different questions were addressed by the judge over the course of the day.
Late this afternoon the jury re-entered the court saying it was unable to reach a verdict and seeking more direction.
The judge urged the six men and six women to take their time, reluctant to discharge them on day seven of the trial.
Joseph Ogilvie, QUT News.