News

Prosecutor wraps up 5-day grilling of Pistorius

Prosecutor wraps up 5-day grilling of Pistorius

ON TRIAL:Pistorius broke into tears on many occasions during the questioning, and at one point retched into a bucket on the witness stand after being shown grisly pictures of Reeva Steenkamp after the shooting on Valentine's Day last year. Photo: Reuters

By Nomatter Ndebele

PRETORIA (Reuters) – The prosecutor in the murder trial of Oscar Pistorius ended his five-day cross-examination of the double amputee track star on Tuesday with a stark summary of how he shot his girlfriend, insisting he killed her deliberately after an argument.

“You fired four shots through the door whilst knowing that she was standing behind the door,” said prosecutor Gerrie Nel, known in South Africa as “The Pitbull” for his hectoring and relentless style of questioning.

“She was locked into the bathroom and you armed yourself with the sole purpose of shooting and killing her,” he continued.

“That is not true,” said the 27-year-old Pistorius, who faces life in prison if convicted of murder.

Pistorius broke into tears on many occasions during the questioning, and at one point retched into a bucket on the witness stand after being shown grisly pictures of Reeva Steenkamp after the shooting on Valentine’s Day last year.

He insists he killed the 29-year-old law graduate and model accidentally after mistaking her for an intruder hiding behind a closed toilet door.

On Tuesday the athlete’s voice quivered as he recounted how he was “overcome with terror and despair” on finding her bloodied body slumped against the toilet after he broke down the door with a cricket bat.

“I was broken, I was overcome, filled with sadness,” he told judge Thokozile Masipa, adding he urged her to hold on while he sought help from neighbors at his high security Pretoria residence.

The trial has drawn wide interest both in South Africa and abroad, with opinion divided as to whether Pistorius did or did not mean to kill Steenkamp.

Before the shooting, Pistorius, whose lower legs were amputated as a baby, was one of South Africa’s most revered sportsmen, admired for his prowess on the race track using carbon-fiber prosthetics that earned him the nickname “The Blade Runner”.

(Reporting by Nomatter Ndebele; Writing by Stella Mapenzauswa; Editing by Ed Cropley)

Recent Headlines

in Local

Howlett Building Closed Tuesday Due to Fire

Updated
howlett fire

Small fire has been put out

in Election 2014, Local

Vallas Rips Rauner Budget Proposal

vallas

The numbers don't add up, Dem lt gov candidate says

in Local

More Good Weather Leads to More Good Crops

crops

81 pct corn, 69 pct soybeans in good to excellent condition.

in Local

An Ill Wind at Southwind Park

local_news_generic

Wind turbine to be fixed

in Local

Will County I-55 Crashes Kill Five

medical

Illinois State Police are reporting five people were killed in accidents involving trucks and autos on Interstate 55 south of Chicago in Will County.