Questions Gable Tostee jury wants answered: What was the long metal object he had?

Gable Tostee is accused of murdering Warriena Wright, who fell to her death from his apartment. Photo / AP
Gable Tostee is accused of murdering Warriena Wright, who fell to her death from his apartment. Photo / AP

The jury deliberating on the verdict in the trial of Gable Tostee have been told not to speculate about a silver item he was holding as he left his Gold Coast apartment after Warriena Wright fell to her death from his balcony.

The Brisbane Supreme Court jury asked Justice John Byrne four questions, including if they should take into consideration how drunk Wright was and an item seen in Tostee's hand on CCTV footage after she died.

Justice Byrne told the jury they should not consider Tostee's conduct after the alleged offence as part of their deliberations, but were open to interpret if Wright's state of mind was influenced by alcohol.

It's one of four intriguing questions the jury wants answered before it delivers its verdict in the Gable Tostee murder trial: What was the long metal object Tostee was carrying when he exited his apartment lift in the wake of Warriena Wright's death?

Jury deliberations entered a second day this morning, after jurors asked four questions of the trial judge late yesterday afternoon.

The jury retired to consider the verdict just after 12.30pm Brisbane time and continued deliberating for the rest of the day.

Shortly after 4pm, however, court reconvened with four questions from jurors.

The jury asked what the long metal object was that Tostee was carrying when he exited his apartment lift after Wright plunged to her death from his 14th-floor Surfers Paradise apartment.

The jury also sought clarification on Tostee's age and, most tellingly, whether Wright's state of mind at the time she fell was important. They asked if her intoxication was something they had to consider as to whether her decision to climb over the balcony balustrade was unreasonable and irrational.

Their final question was to seek clarification on what the terms "causation", "unlawfulness" and "intent" meant.

Counsel for the prosecution and defence will reconvene at 10am today Brisbane time to answer the questions.

Photograph of Warriena Wright and Gable Tostee shown to the jury, taken the night she died.
Photograph of Warriena Wright and Gable Tostee shown to the jury, taken the night she died.

The judge presiding over the trial delivered his final directions to jurors Monday morning, before sending them out to consider their verdict.

Addressing jurors on a range of arguments that arose at trial, Justice John Byrne urged them not to consider Tostee's conduct after 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.

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 yesterday, Justice Byrne said Tostee's behaviour after 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.

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.

Warriena Wright.
Warriena Wright.

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 Wright threw rocks at tostee.

Defence barrister Saul Holt argued Tostee put an "increasingly erratic" Wright on to 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 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."

- With AAP


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