Pistorius: 'I was filled with horror and fear' after shooting Reeva
Paralympic athlete's bail hearing adjourned as prosecutors press for premeditated murder
OSCAR PISTORIUS says he had "no intention" of killing his "beloved" girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp and is "absolutely mortified" by her death. But a magistrate ruled today that the Paralympic athelete should face a charge of premeditated murder over the model's killing.
The magistrate decided that, for the purpose of considering bail, the case against Pistorius would be considered a 'schedule six' offence - or premeditated murder. This means it will be difficult for the 26-year-old athlete to get bail, Sky News reports.
In a sworn statement read by his defence lawyer at today's hearing, Pistorius said he had been woken in the middle of the night by the sound of what he thought was an intruder.
Feeling "extremely vulnerable" in the "pitch-dark" bedroom and thinking Steenkamp was still in bed with him, he fired his pistol at the bathroom door. When he realised Steenkamp was not in the bed, "it filled me with horror and fear", Pistorius said in his statement. He broke down the door to reach her and "she died in my arms".
The athlete's defence team argued that Steenkamp's killing was "not even murder" and Pistorius should be given bail because he is not a danger to society or himself and is not going to abscond.
But prosecutor Gerrie Nel offered a very different version of events today, telling the Pretoria court the Paralympian had got out of bed at his home on the night Steenkamp was killed, put on his prosthetic legs, "walked seven metres" and fired his gun through the bathroom door.
Nel said Pistorius fired four shots and hit Steenkamp three times. Then he broke down the bathroom door and carried the victim downstairs. The 30-year-old model had fled to the small bathroom and locked herself in because she was scared after an argument.
Nel told the court the defence had "a number of questions to answer". They included:
- Why didn't Pistorius search for his girlfriend if he thought there was a burglar in the house?
- Why did Steenkamp lock herself in the toilet - was she afraid of being shot or killed?
- Why did Pistorius put on his prosthetic limbs and walk seven metres to the bathroom?
"If I arm myself, walk a distance and murder a person, that is premeditated," said Nel. "The door is closed. There is no doubt. I walk seven metres and I kill. The motive is 'I want to kill.' That's it."
Pistorius's face was reported to be "creased in pain" and he was "weeping" as he was formally charged with murder.
Steenkamp's private funeral took place today in her home town of Port Elizabeth. ·