In today’s modern fast-paced world finding the right connection for a meaningful relationship has joined the tech revolution. Websites like OKCupid and Match offer the chance to work out something for long term, while apps such as Tinder exist as more short-term solutions to loneliness.
Most of the time our swipes offer a fun escape from the real world for a night or two. A secret meetup, a one-time fling or affair, maybe a few different people at the same time, but our internet persona rarely matches with who we really are, and sometimes we remember that the internet is often buyer beware…’
Featured Photo Credit: www.heraldsun.com.au
Gold Coast Match Up
Like a number of conversations today, which start out innocently enough, two strangers enjoying a few photos of each other both swipe right and are matched through the app. On the beautiful Gold Coast of Australia in 2014 the conversation between Warriena and Gable began just this way.
Getting to know you
While traveling from New Zealand Warriena decided that as part of her vacation she would take in some of the local flavors. As part of her exploration of Australia she matched with the slightly older Gable and over the next couple of days the pair messaged each other to get acquainted…
On August 7th, the pair met up for drinks in a local beer garden before eventually taking the evening back to Gable’s flat on the 14th floor of a nearby building. The pair then spent the night together in what is generally assumed to be a typical tinder meetup.
In the morning however, it seems that their presumed night of romance and passion had taken a very different turn. By midday the body of Warriena Wright was found on the ground below the flat’s 14 story balcony after a tragic fall. Yet how did such a spectacular start to their date night end in such a tragedy?
The Plot Thickens
From the court filings, the story of their evening tryst paints a rather strange picture and leaves almost as many questions as it does answers. We know that after a few days of texting through tinder the couple had their first date at a local beer garden partaking in a few drinks.
The now somewhat inebriated pair then walked back to Gable Tostee’s flat where they proceeded to have sex for the evening, and drink more at his place. Despite the typically casual nature associated with a Tinder date, it is presumed that at some point, the genial nature of the date began to devolve…
Sometime later the two engaged in a violent drunken fight for a still unknown reason. Presumably, it was Warriena who initiated the scuffle, either because Tostee was being a bit too handsy, or because the liquor had made the both of them a bit more…emotionally charged. Whatever the case, Gable apparently felt it necessary to lock her out on the balcony..
A Daring Move
Presumably fearing for her safety and seeing no way out of the situation as she was locked out, Ms. Wright decided that the only way to escape was to climb down. Which is obviously the conclusion a drunk angry person would come to when faced with a similar situation. Of course, even without her heels, this would have been one heck of a climb…
Heck of a Climb
It must have been quite difficult to navigate her way down 14 floors. Especially down the side of a building one is unfamiliar with and while extremely inebriated. It was this decision that ended in her death, as during her decent she slipped and fell to the ground below. But why even take the chance to climb down in the first place?
Silence of a Swipe
Despite being on the balcony for some time before her ill-conceived decision to descend on her own, it appears that Warriena had made no attempt to call out for help. She neither yelled down to the street below nor toward any of the nearby flats to try and grab the attention of a neighbor to her aid…
We All Make Mistakes
Instead, Warriena Wright made the worst decision of her life, which would of course be the last decision of her life as well. In making unreasonable choice to climb the balcony, she sealed her own fate, but was her fate already sealed from the moment she went out with her ungentlemanly Tinder date?
A Microphone and a Plan
Strangely enough, we have a clear picture of the last three hours in the life of Ms. Wright. For still unknown reasons, and somewhat ethically questionable, Mr. Tostee unbeknownst to his date made a three-hour audio recording of what we now know are the last words of Ms. Wright.
The Weight of Words
Perhaps the recording was due to what the prosecution sited as erratic behavior on the part of Ms. Wright, and Mr. Tostee was simply trying to protect himself from a bad situation. In any case, on the recording the pair can be heard screaming at each other as the fight went on.
Early on Gable demanded that Warriena leave his apartment out the front door. A command she vehemently refused to acknowledge, let alone acquiesce to. It was moments later that Ms. Wright began her presumed assault upon Mr. Tostee, using his own telescope, which prompted him to restrain her with his forearm across her throat.
On the recording Mr. Tostee can be heard telling her, “you’re lucky I haven’t chucked you off my balcony you god damn psycho little bitch.”, and “If you try and pull anything, I’ll knock you out, I’ll knock you the *%#& out. Do you understand?”
Attempting to defuse the quickly escalating chaos of the situation, Mr. Tostee opted to lock Ms. Wright behind the nearest door which happened to be his balcony. As he went to lock her behind the door, Ms. Wright could be heard yelling “no” over and over in panic and desperation.
Who Ya Gonna Call?
A few minutes later, Marienna made the decision to climb over the railing and fell to her death. Curiously after Ms. Wright fell to her death, Mr. Tostee called his lawyer rather then emergency services, and left out of the basement exit to get a slice of pizza…
Calls and Crimes
Obviously, Trostee believed that recharging and securing the advice of his attorney was much more important than trying to save the life of his former date. Following her death, Tostee was charged, unsurprisingly, with murder and manslaughter of his Tinder date. He would soon have to defend his bizarre behavior after-the-fact in front of a jury.
As it happens, Trostee would never have to defend why he went for pizza after a woman had effectively killed herself on his balcony. At his trial, the judge had apparently instructed the jury not to consider the bizarre actions following her death, nor were they supposed to remark on the still odd fact that Mr. Tostee had recorded their fight..
The prosecution made the argument that in fearing for her life, and without any means of a reasonable escape, Ms. Wright was forced to try and climb the building. In defense of Mr. Tostee, his lawyer focused on the assertion that locking Ms. Wright onto the balcony was simply an attempt to stop any further violence and assault.
At the end of the trial the jury, which was composed of 6 men and 6 women, found that Mr. Tostee was innocent in the death of Ms. Wright and that he was only trying to defuse the situation. Women’s rights groups worry that this is just another example of ignoring violence against women. Regardless of that, Mr. Tostee is reported to simply be “looking forward to getting on with his life”