Man pleads guilty to shooting brother through window
An intoxicated young man who shot his brother through the front window of the family home has pleaded guilty to criminal negligence.
Dimitri Gatis, 22, has spent almost two years behind bars after shooting his younger brother Alex, leaving the 16-year-old with serious chest and abdomen injuries.
The plea brings to an end more than a year of legal negotiations, which saw a charge of attempted murder dropped in the magistrates court.
On Friday, David Edwardson QC, for Gatis, guided his client through the process of pleading not guilty to aggravated recklessly causing serious harm, but entering a guilty plea to causing serious harm by criminal negligence.
The guilty plea was accepted by the prosecution and Gatis will now face sentencing submissions in the District Court.
The legal manoeuvre reduces the maximum penalty Gatis is facing from 19 years in prison to four years.
The principal difference between the two charges is whether Gatis was so impaired by drug use that he was criminally irresponsible at the time of the offence.
By his plea, Gatis admitted that he was suffering self-induced intoxication at the time of the shooting.
Gatis handed himself into police in the company of family members on July 22, 2019.
About 9.30am that day, Gatis fired a gun through the front window of his family's Lockleys home, hitting his brother in the abdomen and causing an injury that required emergency surgery.
The brothers' parents were overseas at the time of the incident and were forced to make a mercy dash home to find one son in a serious condition in hospital, and the other behind bars.
Gatis was initially charged with attempting to murder his brother along with firearms offences and trafficking a controlled drug.
He did not apply for bail though his close-knit family said they would rally around both brothers.
During a hearing last year the attempted murder charge was dropped and Gatis entered guilty pleas to the firearms and drugs charges.
Gatis will appear in court again in April.
Originally published as Man pleads guilty to shooting brother through window