On July 30, 2011, Gittany, 40, was found guilty of the murder of his fiance, Lisa Harnum. Amidst a state of “apoplectic” rage, Gittany was held to have thrown his fiance 15 stories from their Eastern Sydney suburbs apartment. Today, the jury-free trial served Gittany to a minimum 18-year non parole gaol sentence, with a maximum 26 year sentence.
Prior to sentencing, Gittany’s barrister pled for a more lenient parole period on the 20 year life sentence typical of murder convictions, asserting that Gittany is “unlikely to reoffend”. Contrary to this, the Senior Crown Prosecutor called for “at least” 20 years for the “premeditated” murder, arguing that Gittany’s “defiant denial of guilt” demonstrates an inability to be rehabilitated.
Today, presiding judge Justice McCallum found that whilst Gittany had not planned to murder Harnum until the day of her death, the requisite intent was formed during the act of throwing her off the balcony. Justice McCallum told the court today that the serious circumstances of the murder were sufficient to use the 20 year non-parole period as a guide for sentencing. McCallum expressed sincere concern towards the adamant denial of guilt from Gittany and his party, suggesting that rehabilitation indeed seems futile.
During the sentencing trial, new evidence from Harnum’s close friend suggested that the victim had been directly threatened of her life on several occasions. The Crown rejected the evidence given it was revealed post criminal indictment.
Arguably the most notable contribution to the sentencing trial has been the silent protests and animated televised interviews with Rachelle Louise; Harnum look-alike and new girlfriend of Gittany. Her dramatic attempts to televise her boyfriend’s innocence were shockingly met with her absence at the hearing this morning. Sources allege this is due to her current contract with Channel 7.
Justice McCallum also added that Gittany’s “embrace” of media attention further encouraged her hard-handed sentence today. This comment provides some ease to those of both public and private sectors that expressed concern over the media sensationalism during the trial used by the convicted felon to manipulate the court.
This sentence not only provides a small sense of retributive justice for the family and friends of Ms Lisa Harnum, but it assures the public that the use of orchestrated media manipulation will not interfere with the criminal justice system of Australia.
News sourced from NEWS.com.