Balcony fall: woman 'really caring'

Last updated 10:06 10/08/2014
balcony
Kristian Silva

BALCONY FALL: Police investigators at Surfers Paradise's Avalon resort after a woman plunged to her death.

Warriena Tagpuno Wright
SUSPICIOUS DEATH: Warriena Tagpuno Wright fell from the balcony of a Surfers' Paradise high-rise apartment building.
Submitted on 8/9/2014 at 16:05 0 0 0 i was abandoned by both of my parents at birth. my father has had four marriages,ive only met my mother a few times.i was raised by my grandmother. i married the girl of my dreams when i was 20. we have four epic kids [two are late-teens,two are 11-12] two dogs,four cats, and im still in love with my lady. if you marry for love,and only love,you'll thrive,be happy,and mature accordingly. the key to happy marriage is l-o-v-e. its gotta be real. if it isnt,then forget about it. im surrounded by guys who look like men,but behave like baboons.too many 'boys' who would rather play x-box,than be real men. sex doesnt make you an adult.that idea is propoganda only. taking charge of your life,being kind,being faithful,taking the time to love your partner,being willing to say
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APARTMENT'S OWNER: Gable Tostee, 28, is helping police with their inquiries.

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A childhood friend of the woman who fell to her death from a Surfers Paradise balcony has described her as "really caring".

Twenty-six-year-old Warriena Tagpuno Wright, from Lower Hutt, died when she fell from the Avalon apartment building on Friday.

Edwina Ulberg paid tribute to the friend she knew from teenage years at Porirua's Seventh Day Adventist Church.

''She was really shy and quiet," she said.

"She was really nice - a beautiful person inside and out. She was really caring.

"She helped people out and stuff. She was really nice.''

Though the pair saw little of each other in recent years, they would chat when they ran into each other.

Queensland police were continuing their investigation in to what led to the woman's fall from the 14th floor of the building.

They have confirmed the death was being treated as suspicious.

"In all cases like this - any sudden death which can't be explained - we treat as suspicious right from the start to ensure we determine what occurred," Detective Superintendent Dave Hutchinson said.

The 28-year-old man who is the sole occupant of the apartment, Gable Tostee, was assisting police with inquiries on Friday afternoon. He was not formally arrested and no charges have been laid.

Tagpuno Wright was reportedly visiting Tostee after meeting him through an online dating app, believed to be Tinder, the Courier Mail reported.

Police said Tagpuno Wright arrived in Australia alone on July 29 for a two-week holiday, which included attending a wedding.

The paper said sources close to the investigation had revealed the pair were drinking and Tagpuno Wright was seen on the balcony prior to her death.

Witnesses at the scene recalled hearing a scream and speculated that the woman may have slipped while trying to climb down the outside of the building.

Hutchinson said neighbours heard loud voices and noises coming from the apartment. But when police arrived at the scene, nobody was inside.

Tostee handed himself in to detectives yesterday and was questioned for over two hours at Surfers Paradise Police Station, according to the Courier Mail.

He was released without charge a couple of hours later.

Australia's Nine News reported Tostee was known to police for a fraud he was previously involved in that netted him and two friends AU$30,000 (NZ$32,800). The trio were found guilty in 2004 of making hundreds of fake ID cards for underage teenagers attending end-of-exams party week known as Schoolies.

The tower where Friday's incident took place, which is about 30 storeys high, is near the heart of Surfers Paradise off the Gold Coast Highway.

Police taped off the entrance to the Avalon on Friday, with forensic investigators setting up a blue tent in the area where Tagpuno Wright fell.

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Curious residents peered from their balconies as forensic crews examined the site.

Tagpuno Wright's body was taken away about 12pm as police came and went from the building.

"The unit is still being examined at the moment," Detective Superintendent Hutchinson said on Friday morning.

"We have identified a person from the unit who is making himself available for interview later today."

However he declined to comment on the relationship between Tagpuno Wright and Tostee.

Police continue to appeal for anyone who may have CCTV, camera, or mobile phone vision of the Avalon Apartment building around the time of the incident to contact Gold Coast Police or Crime Stoppers.

 

Anyone with information which could assist with this matter should contact Crime Stoppers anonymously via crimestoppers.com.au 24hrs a day.

- Kristian Silva and Tom Hunt, Brisbane Times & Stuff.co.nz

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