The West

Stefan schmidt, guilty of murder

A man who pushed a pub patron so hard that he fell through the second-storey window of Cottesloe’s Ocean Beach Hotel and on to the footpath has been jailed for life with a minium term of 14 years.

Stefan Pahia Schmidt was this afternoon jailed for the murder of musician Andy Marshall who died after he was pushed and fell through the window on May 8 last year.

Schmidt, 26, was found guilty of murder following an eight-day Supreme Court trial in June.

Schmidt, a former bouncer who weighed 152kg at the time of the crime, claimed he intended only to push Mr Marshall with his left hand like a “rugby fend-off” but he never intended to hurt or kill him.

In his sentencing submissions, defence lawyer Tom Percy argued for a sentence other than life imprisonment in light of the “level of criminality” and the circumstances of the assault.

At the trial, Mr Percy said that had Schmidt intended any serious harm to Mr Marshall, he would have “smashed him”.

Mr Percy said Mr Marshall was dead because there was no safety glass in the hotel’s windows.

At Schmidt’s trial, prosecutor Amanda Forrestor told the jury there had been the “barest exchange of words” between them before the push.

She had said it was a clear case of murder and there was no explanation for Schmidt’s unjustified attack on Mr Marshall other than a fit of rage.

Mr Marshall’s father Alan travelled from New Zealand for Schmidt’s sentencing.

Last week he described the disbelief at his son's death.

Schmidt, a rugby player who represented the State, handed himself into police the day after the incident, according to written sentencing submissions by his defence team.

Andrew Marshall

Mr Percy revealed Schmidt had offered to plead guilty to the lesser charge of unlawful assault causing death, but this was not accepted by the Director of Public Prosecutions.

Mr Percy said this offer demonstrated that Schmidt had accepted a degree of moral culpability.

Police conduct tests on the windows at the OBH. Picture: Mogens Johansen/The West Australian.

He said the State accepted Schmidt had no intention to kill Mr Marshall.

“Mr Schmidt did not know the victim, there was not a sustained, violent attack, he was not carrying out an arranged plan, was not in company and he has exhibited both remorse and empathy,” he said.

In his sentencing submissions, Mr Percy argued for a sentence other than imprisonment in light of the “level of criminality” and the circumstances of the assault.

“However, if life imprisonment is imposed, the combination of the circumstances of the assault... The offender co-operation with police and his offer to plead guilty to unlawful assault causing death, make a term close to the statutory minimum,” he said.

Wendy and Alan Marshall at the spot where their son died. Picture: Michael O'Brien/The West Australian
The West Australian

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