60-year-old Jonathan Christopher Stasiuk has pleaded guilty to the murder of former Isle of Wight councillor Gerry White today (Tuesday).
As first reported by Island Echo, Police were called to a 16-acre community garden on the outskirts of Lake on 27th May this year. It is here that officers found the body of 73-year-old Gerald White in amongst woodland off the Byway SS18. Mr White was a former county councillor, a parish councillor and landlord of The Stag at Lake.
Police were alerted to the incident when Stasiuk, of Pier Street, Sandown, called 999 and reported what had happened. He was subsequently arrested and later charged with murder.
At the start of his trial at Southampton Crown Court last week, it was revealed that Stasiuk used a chainsaw to attack Mr White – but it ran out of petrol. The 60-year-old then strangled Gerry to death whilst shouting ‘die bastard, die’. A post-mortem examination recorded the cause of death as compression of the neck.
Jonathan Stasiuk started the trial by pleading guilty to manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility, but today, as the trial neared its end, Stasiuk admitted murder.
Senior Investigating Officer, Detective Inspector Toby Elcock, said:
“This was a brutal attack on a much-loved and respected member of the community.
“Jon Stasiuk shockingly acknowledged that he was the man responsible for killing Gerry White, and yet showed absolutely no remorse for his death throughout the entire process until his trial.
“Late in this process he has come to terms with what he has done and has at last made full admissions to the jury, having previously tried to plead guilty to manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility – a plea that we did not accept.
“Our thoughts are with Mr White’s family and friends who have had to endure a lengthy criminal justice process.”
Stasiuk will be sentenced on Thursday 14th November.