Oscar Pistorius Denies Reeva Steenkamp’s Death Was Premeditated Murder

This morning, Olympic athlete Oscar Pistorius faced his first bail hearing regarding the death of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp and disputed the premeditated murder charge against him. The higher charge caries the most intense bail requirements of South African law, according to The Atlantic.

Here’s an update on where the case is at…

  1. The defense claims the shooting was an accident. Their argument: Pistorius believed that an intruder was in his Pretoria, South Africa home.  He allegedly thought Steenkamp was asleep in bed.  Not wearing his prosthetic legs, he allegedly reached for his 9mm gun from under his bed, and pumped four bullets into the bathroom door.  Realizing that Steenkamp was not in the bed after all, he claims he then put on his prosthetic legs, walked to the bathroom and used a cricket bat to break open the locked door and found Steenkamp there. She’d been hit with three of the four bullets.
  2. The prosecution plans to point out the gaping holes in this defense, such as why would an intruder lock themselves in the bathroom? Additionally, neighbors allegedly heard shouting shortly before the shooting and cops had been called to the house two hours before after previous complaints of shouting. Additionally, The Atlantic is reporting that the prosecution claims that Pistorius put on his prosthetic legs and walked 7 meters before shooting at the bathroom door (instead of shooting from near the bed, as he claimed).
  3. Steenkamp was a law school graduate and budding model.   Her reality TV debut in the “Survivor”-styled show “Tropika Island of Treasure” premiered the Sunday following her death.
  4. Beyond her work in modeling and television, Reeva Steenkamp strongly advocated the end of domestic violence against women. The day she was murdered, Steenkamp was to give a speech at Sandown High School in Johannesburg about her own experiences in a previous abusive relationship, according to The New York Post.
  5. Police found banned steroids in the runner’s home, as well as evidence of “heavy drinking,” the UK’s Sun reports — suggesting Pistorius might have murdered his girlfriend in a fit of ‘roid rage.

Whether you believe the intruder story or not, there are many issues to contend with in this terrible loss of life.  A woman advocating the end of violence towards women lost her life to gun violence. The first instinct of Pistorius was to reach for his 9 mm and blast bullets into a locked door. There’s so much to consider about this incredibly sad tale.

[The Atlantic]
[New York Post (1)]
[New York Post (2)]
[New York Post (3)]

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