The trial continued in Pretoria on Tuesday.
The trial continued in Pretoria on Tuesday..

Oscar Pistorius killed Reeva Steenkamp 'on purpose'

Published 16 Comments

Gerrie Nel summed up his cross-examination of Oscar Pistorius by insisting the athlete knew Reeva Steenkamp was behind the toilet door when he shot four bullets through it.

The prosecutor ended five days of questioning Mr Pistorius today, in which the court was painted the picture of the double amputee as an obsessive boyfriend and reckless gun enthusiast.

Mr Nel, considered South Africa's top prosecutor, told the Pretoria High Court that Pistorius armed himself with the intention of shooting and killing Ms Steenkamp on Valentine's Day last year.

"You fired four shots through the door whilst knowing that she was standing behind the door," Mr Nel said as he continued his relentless 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 Paralympic champion, who denies the charge of the premeditated murder of his girlfriend.

The court has had to be adjourned more than once over the last five days to allow Mr Pistorius to regain his composure, frequently breaking down into tears or retching after being shown graphic pictures from the crime scene.

His voice started to break as he recounted the moment he realised what he had done saying he was "overcome with terror and despair" after breaking down the toilet door to find her body slumped over the toilet.

"I was broken, I was overcome, filled with sadness," he told the judge Thokozile Masipa.

Mr Nel, known as the 'pitbull' in South Africa, asked the defendant to name who was to blame for Ms Steenkamp's death.

"Who should we blame for the fact that you shot her?," Mr Nel asked.

Pistorius replied: "I don't know my lady, I was scared. I believe there was a threat on my life."

Mr Nel continued: "Once again, we shouldn't blame you? Who should we blame?"

"I'm not sure," Pistorius replied.

Mr Nel asked: "Should we blame Reeva? She never told you that she was going to the toilet - we should blame Reeva?"

Pistorius replied: "No, my lady."

Mr Nel pressed on: "Should we blame the government? You must be blaming someone?"

"I don't know. My lady, I believed that someone was coming to attack me," Pistorius replied.

Mr Nel then asked: "Who should we blame for the black talon rounds that ripped through her body?

Pistorius had to compose himself before suggesting that the ammunition was the required type for the firearm.

 Mr Nel then went on to question why Pistorius didn't hear the "blood-curdling" screams that neighbours had heard.

He went on: "I'm putting to you that there were only two people in the house.

"You killed Reeva. I'm putting it to you that your version is not only untruthful but is so improbable that it cannot reasonably be true.

"She was locked into the bathroom and you armed yourself with the sole purpose of shooting and killing her."

Pistorius said: "That's not true my lady."

Mr Nel ended: "That's what you did. Afterwards, indeed, you were overcome by what you had done - only because it was your intention to kill her."

The case continues.


Oscar Pistorius

Read more

back to top