Pistorius “shot Reeva Steenkamp in bathroom”

Source: AFP

Prosecutors told South African courts on Tuesday that sprinting star Oscar Pistorius shot his girlfriend four times through their bathroom door in cold blood.

The magistrates court heard from prosecutors that the double amputee Olympian and Paralympian, Pistorius, murdered top model girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, 29, four times through the bathroom door of his upmarket, gated Pretoria estate in a pre-meditated attack.

Pistorius has fervently denied the claims in an affidavit submitted to the court, which has caused the bail hearing to be postponed until Wednesday to give the prosecution time to assess the submissions.

The Paralympic gold medal winner has claimed he did kill her but it was unintentional and that the couple were very much in love.

Steenkamp, who had been going out with Pistorius, nicknamed “Blade Runner”, since late last year, was laid to rest in a quiet and private ceremony at a small Port Elizabeth chapel with any press kept at a distance.

Steenkamp’s mother has said the news of the death of her daughter was “horrendous” and asked “Why my little girl? Why did this happen? Why did he do this?” in an interview with the Times of South Africa.

Heavyweight lawyers have been called in by both parties. The prosecution have claimed Steenkamp was shot four times with a 9mm pistol in the early hours of Thursday while the defence are seeking to argue that there are “exceptional circumstances” for 26-year-old Pistorius to be freed pending trial.

More details are expected to come out surrounding the cover girl model’s death last Thursday amid many conflicting unconfirmed reports. Initially reports suggested Pistorius mistook Steenkamp for an unwanted intruder while others claim the athlete beat her with a cricket bat before murdering her.

Pistorius’ family have refuted all claims that he is guilty of murder and insist that all evidence will deny “any possibility of a premeditated murder or indeed any murder at all”.

Steenkamp’s family have stated that they bear no grudge towards the Paralympic gold winner, Pistorius, but wanted more clarity on the events surrounding the model’s death.

Reeva Steenkamp’s uncle, Michael Steenkamp, said: “The family haven’t got that animosity or hatred or anything like that but questions, and we realise that it’s going to come out.”

Pistorius, who seemed anxious in court today, after breaking down in tears at the previous court hearing on Friday, has amassed a large team of high profile lawyers, medical specialists and public relations experts to aid him in his case.

One of the lawyers, Kenny Oldwage, defended the driver in a 2010 accident that killed former president Nelson Mandela’s great-grandchild Zenani. The driver was acquitted.

Pistorius’ name was before last week an inspirational global household name after being the first double amputee to compete against fully able bodied athletes at the 2012 London Olympic Game.

He has now had to put place his career on hold as he awaits the result of the trial: races in Australia, Brazil, Britain and the USA have been cancelled.

The Johannesburg born sprinter had both legs amputated at only 11 months due to a birth defect which left him without lower leg bones and earned the nickname “Blade Runner” because of his custom-built carbon-fibre running blades.

Main image credit: twitter – @amyfallon

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