Runner Oscar Pistorius captured our hearts as the first ever double amputee to run the 200m and 400m races alongside abled-bodied men during the 2012 Summer Olympics. Now Pistorius, affectionately labeled the “Blade Runner” because of the shape of the prosthetic legs he runs on, has been arrested for the murder of his girlfriend, model and face of Avon South Africa Reeva Steenkamp. The arrest has stunned fans and athletes around the world who were inspired by his passion, ability and life story.
It should be noted that Pistorius has not yet been convicted of the murder, though police try not to make high-profile arrests unless they are certain of the defendant’s guilt. According to a police spokesman, Pistorius is the only suspect in the murder due to a variety of eyewitness accounts and previous incidents of domestic violence. There are conflicting stories regarding what happened. This is usually the case with serious charges, which is why it is important to enlist the services of a qualified criminal law attorney if you have been charged with murder or another capital crime.
Evidence and conflicting stories
The evidence available to the public includes a 9mm pistol found at the scene of the crime as well as accounts reporting shooting and disturbances at the Pistorius home in a gated community in Pretoria. Pistorius would reportedly go to the shooting range and practice marksmanship with a 9mm pistol when he couldn’t sleep.
Media outlets in South Africa are reporting that Pistorius thought that his girlfriend was a burglar and shot her accidentally when she entered his home in the middle of the night. However, police reports are not yet conclusive on this matter. Pistorius has not made any public statements, and his father simply offered his prayers for Oscar and for the Steenkamp family through this troubling time.
Pistorius’ court hearing
Pistorius appeared before a South African judge this morning. He has been formally charged with Steenkamp’s murder — and prosecutors have declared their intent to argue that this was a case of premeditated murder. He is being held without bail, and his next court date is set for Tuesday, February 26th.
Pistorius has since been transferred to a jail where his special needs can be accommodated.