Cynthia “Gitsie” Haataja was born April 20, 1975, A graduate of Bishop Verot High School, she attended Edison Community College and Hunter College in Long Island City, N.Y. She was one of the last of Michael Aligs original club kids.
In episode 127 of The Pee-ew, Michael Alig talks about his relationship with Gitsie. He said “I didn’t know her that long, she moved to New York, I think, the summer.. of 95 if I’m not incorrect.. I knew her about a year, I would say.”Alig went on to say that he and Gitsie were drawn to each other because of their mutual drug addiction.”
Gitsie was interviewed for the 1998 Party Monster Shockumentary. She said that the last party she attended at (Limelight owner) peter Gatien’s house. Alig overdosed, his heart stopped and they had to call the paramedics she said ” It was a hard one, you know, he was dead there for a second.”
When Michael Alig fled New York to Denver Colorado, before his arrest in 1996, It took 5 weeks to make the trip; Gitsie went with him, after he had confessed to the murder of Angel Melendez to her. She told Party Monster Shockumentary, “that secret was the hardest thing in the whole world.. I’ve been told.. I always thought there would be a resolution, but I just thought first he needed to be sober.”
Shortley after her interview for the Party Monster, Gitsie died of a drug overdose. The New York Times reported “Cynthia Haataja, 22, was discovered by her roommate in a bed in their apartment at 1129 47th Avenue in Long Island City; Jan. 12, 1998”
The New York Times also reported that her death was a blow to the case against Peter Gatien, writing, “A woman who was considered a potential witness in the upcoming trial of the nightclub owner Peter Gatien was found dead Monday in a Queens apartment, the apparent victim of a drug overdose, the police said. No foul play was suspected.”