Mr White also pointed to stress including seeing the victim’s brother Steve Johnson and police in court.
Scott Johnson’s brother, Steve. He said his family was shaken by the court’s decision. Source: AAP / Dan Himbrechts
The NSW Court of Criminal Appeal on Friday found the Supreme Court judge had erred for legal reasons in refusing to allow Mr White to withdraw the plea later that morning.
“The time is frustrating, but we are not going to stop. Whatever lies ahead, we’re ready for it.”
Scott Johnson’s (pictured) death was initially ruled a suicide, but a coroner in 2017 determined it involved human intervention, leading to Scott White’s arrest in 2020. Source: Supplied
Mr Johnson said he was lucky to have a good team working on the case and remained ready to give Mr White his day in court.
But the appeal court disagreed, detailing numerous considerations.
Steve Johnson hugs his wife Rosemarie as they arrive at the Supreme Court in Sydney on 2 May, 2022. Source: AAP, AP / Rick Rycroft
Mr White’s plea was “entirely unexpected” such that he hadn’t received explanations his barrister was mandated to give, the Crown hadn’t articulated precisely how it was putting it case and his reasoning for pleading “did not necessarily serve his interests”.