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R v Gittany

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by

Bridie Peacocke

on 13 June 2016

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Transcript of R v Gittany

R v Gittany
CCTV Footage
Gittany is pictured through a pinhole camera with his hand over Harnum's mouth
69 seconds later, Lisa was dead on the sidewalk
Eye Witness: Joshua Rathmell
Describes seeing "A guy without a shirt on, carrying a black, large suitcase and throwing it off."
Gave "a careful and compelling account" of what he saw
Exposes certain aspects of his past in order to portray a certain persona
Conspiracies surrounding the relationship between Rachelle Louise and Simon Gittany- is he abusing her as well?
Uses false information to portray Rachelle Louise as an attention seeker
The Appeal
"Mr Gittany does maintain his innocence and he does intend to appeal" - Abigail Bannister, his lawyer
He recently lodged an appeal (Jan 2016)
It will be difficult to appeal as it was a judge only trial
A jury doesn't have to state the thinking behind their decisions
A judge states the reasons a person is being convicted
Justice Lucy McCallum, the person who convicted Simon Gittany after the judge only trial.
Accused: Simon Gittany
Justice was achieved
Murder is a crime punishable by imprisonment for life or for 25 years
Gittany was sentenced to 26 years, with a minimum of 18 years
Was not considered as 'above the law'
Society
Increased awareness of domestic and emotional abuse
Lisa Harnum Foundation
Data

Controversies
The timing of the incident- only 69 seconds
Mental health- did Lisa commit suicide?
No fingerprints on the balustrade
Note found in her pocket: "there are surveillance cameras inside and outside the house"
Simon claims that she simply "lost her footing" and fell to her death
The 'schizophrenic' nature of the relationship
Lisa was still holding her handbag- how if she was unconscious?
"There are no winners in this thing. Two families lives have been changed forever. We lost our daughter. His family has gone through a lot of stuff." - Joan Harnum, Lisa's Mum
Justice can not be fully achieved because the victim is dead
Compelling Evidence
Role of the Media
Justice Achieved
Victim: Lisa Harnum
Brother
Mother
On average in Australia, 1 woman per week is murdered by an intimate partner
55.4% are acquitted in Judge alone trials
29% are acquitted in Jury trials
One in four Australian women has experienced emotional abuse by a current or former partner.
Full transcript