PRETORIA, South Africa - More than a year after he killed his girlfriend, Oscar Pistorius is expected to finally answer question
PRETORIA, South Africa - More than a year after he killed his girlfriend, Oscar Pistorius is expected to finally answer questionin News 22.12.2018 03:06
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PRETORIA, South Africa - More than a year after he killed his girlfriend, Oscar Pistorius is expected to finally answer questions about why he shot Reeva Steenkamp through a toilet door when his murder trial resumes this week and his defence lawyers begin presenting the evidence they hope will save the Olympic athlete from going to prison for 25 years to life. Nick Boyle Jersey . Pistorius account that he killed Steenkamp by mistake is going to "stand or fall" with his testimony in court, a legal expert says. Charged with premeditated murder for Steenkamps death, Pistorius and his defence team say he will testify to counter accusations that he intentionally killed Steenkamp by firing four times through the door in his bathroom before dawn on Valentines Day last year, hitting her in the head, arm and hip. Pistorius says he mistook Steenkamp for a dangerous intruder hiding in a toilet cubicle. South Africa has no trial by jury, meaning Judge Thokozile Masipa will pronounce Pistorius guilty or not guilty of murder, and Pistorius has the chance to convince her that he did not intentionally kill the 29-year-old model. But Pistorius testimony also gives prosecutors the chance to cross-examine the celebrated double-amputee runner and scrutinize every aspect of his story. Facing a possible life sentence, his questioning by chief prosecutor Gerrie Nel could be the biggest challenge yet for the 27-year-old Pistorius, a disabled athlete who fought for years to win the right to compete alongside able-bodied runners and made history by running at the 2012 Olympics. Brian Webber, one of Pistorius lawyers, said they had no choice but to put Pistorius on the stand. Legal experts say its a risk Pistorius defence has to take. In a rare comment after the prosecution closed its case, Pistorius said "we have a lot ahead of us." Pistorius often reacted emotionally to details of Steenkamps death in the four weeks of prosecution-led testimony at his trial. He retched loudly and vomited in court when a pathologist described Steenkamps grisly injuries and cried and frequently covered his ears while sitting in the dock in an apparent attempt to block out graphic testimony. During his own testimony, he will have to describe in depth his fatal shooting of Steenkamp. "He cant ignore it," Marius du Toit, a criminal defence lawyer and former state prosecutor in South Africa who is observing the trial, said of Pistorius testifying. "He has to get into the box and confirm his version and be open to cross-examination. And this matter is going to stand or fall with that." Defendants in South Africa have the right to remain silent but because he has admitted killing Steenkamp, Pistorius is under pressure to tell the court why he decided to shoot through the door with his 9 mm pistol without knowing — in his version — who was on the other side. Prosecutors charge that Pistorius murdered Steenkamp after a fight and he must dispel their accusations that he intentionally shot her as she hid behind the locked door, legal experts say. Pistorius likely wont be the first witness the defence calls on Monday, but he should take the stand straight after pathologist Prof. Jan Botha gives evidence. Pistorius has not yet spoken publicly about the shooting, only giving his side in a written statement at his bail hearing a year ago and in court documents presented at the start of the trial last month. In those statements, Pistorius claims to have been in a loving relationship with Steenkamp but, in fear for his life, he shot at what he thought was an intruder after hearing a window being opened in his bathroom and then a noise inside the cubicle. Even if he is acquitted of murder, Pistorius faces a negligent killing conviction which can carry a five-year prison sentence. His testimony must show that he acted reasonably when he shot four times from close range. "A reasonable man most probably would not have fired four shots through the door," lawyer and observer du Toit said. "His actions were definitely not reasonable and I think thats his biggest problem." ___ Gerald Imray is on Twitter at www.twitter.com/GeraldImrayAP Robert Griffin III Jersey .ca. The NHL Play of the Year showdown kicks off with some slick moves going head-to-head with a combination of soft hands and endless patience. 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He didnt play again after Aug. 5 following a left oblique strain he suffered in his return after being sidelined for more than a month with a broken right index finger.It marked the third oblique injury of Lawries four-year career. He strained his left oblique in a warmup game for the 2013 World Baseball Classic in March 2013, missing the first 14 games of the season. Lawrie also missed almost a month with a right oblique strain in late 2012.The 24-year-old Lawrie, who grew up in British Columbia, has already been on the disabled list six times.For myself its about staying healthy and getting a substantial amount of playing time. Its a new chapter, he said. This is a team that likes to win. I havent been on that side of the coin. I am a big piece of this puzzle, I feel like.Lawrie was a first-round pick by the Brewers at No. 16 overall in the 2008 draft. Traded to Toronto in December 2010, Lawrie made his major league debut Aug. 5, 2011. 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