Monday, 18 February 2013
Pistorius Sobs As Court Hears Murder Charge
South African ‘Blade Runner’ Oscar Pistorius broke down in tears on Friday after he was charged in court with shooting dead his girlfriend in his Pretoria house.The 26-year-old Olympic and Paralympic superstar stood with head bowed in front of magistrate Desmond Nair to hear the murder charge read out, then started sobbing, covering his face with his hands.
“Take it easy,” Nair told him. “Come take a seat.”
Prosecutors told the Pretoria court they would argue the shooting of 30-year-old model Reeva Steenkamp in the early hours of Thursday was pre-meditated.
The case has stunned a nation that reveres ‘the fastest man on no legs’ as a hero who triumphed over adversity to compete with able-bodied athletes at the highest levels of sport.
Pistorius is a double amputee who became one of the biggest names in world athletics.
Steenkamp, a model and regular on the South African party scene, was found shot dead in his plush home in the middle of a heavily guarded gated complex in the northern outskirts of the South African capital, police said.
The Afrikaans-language Beeld newspaper said she had been hit four times, in the head, chest, pelvis and hand.
“The security guards found Pistorius by Steenkamp’s body in the bathroom,” the paper said on its website, citing a neighbor. “The door had bullet holes right through it.”
Early reports of the shooting suggested he may have mistaken Steenkamp for an intruder, but police said neighbors had heard noises before the shots and there had been previous “domestic” incidents at the house.
He said nothing during the 40-minute hearing. His father, Henke, and brother, Carl, sat directly behind him in the packed court-room, occasionally leaning forward to give him a pat on the shoulder.
Pistorius’ mother died in 2002 when he was 15 years old – a tragedy that he said drove him into pursuing a full-time sporting career.
The hearing was adjourned until February 19 and Pistorius will remain in custody. Meanwhile Pastor's and dignitries have been visiting him in jail and his sister was seen dropping off a goodie bag from Woolworths for him.
Posted by Rita Egwu at 01:47