Olympic Hero or Murderer?
Oscar Pistorius, hero of the 2012 Summer Olympics, has been accused of murdering his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp. On the morning of Valentine’s Day, police were called to Pistorius’ house in South Africa after neighbors heard shouting and gunshots. They discovered Steenkamp’s body shot in the hip, arm and head in the house, as well as a bloody cricket bat in the bathroom.
Pistorius is pleading innocent in court. Stating that he believed that there was an intruder in the bathroom, Pistorius is claiming self-defense. He states that he wasn’t wearing his prosthetic legs during the night, and felt susceptible to intruders, a reasonable fear in violence-plagued South Africa. He claims to have called emergency services for Reeva Steenkamp soon after she was shot.
The prosecution is charging Pistorius with premeditated murder, arguing that the trajectory of the bullets through the bathroom door proves that Pistorius took the time to put on his prosthetic legs. This suggests that the shooting was planned, not done in a rushed panic. Neighbors reported hearing yelling from the house in the time leading up to Reeva Steenkamp’s death and domestic abuse charges have been levied against Pistorius before.
Reeva Steenkamp was twenty-nine and hoped to be a paralegal by the time she turned thirty. She was buried on February 19, in Port Elizabeth.