Oscar Pistorius may attempt to flee South Africa
Judge Desmond Nair cited for tomorrow on the parties to resume the session, which intervened today, called as a witness by the prosecution, the police chief investigating the case, Hilton Botha.
The BBC’s Andrew Harding, in court, says the magistrate’s line of questioning indicated he may be considering granting bail.
The prosecutor, Gerrie Nel, to support its refusal to grant bail to the accused, had called Botha. The judge asked the witness if you think an Olympic athlete known internationally as Pistorius would try to escape to another country, to which the witness replied: “Maybe.”
The prosecution accuses Pistorius of premeditated murder, while the only suspect, the athlete himself, claims that shot through the bathroom door thinking it did against an alleged intruder.
Asked by the prosecutor, Botha said he had evidence of two neighbors who heard screams would Pistorius home before Steenkamp died because of the wounds caused by bullets. However, the defense argued that neighbors lived far from the urbanization of the athlete and did not specify whether the screams coming from the house of the athlete.
The athlete said yesterday during the hearing that he killed his girlfriend through the closed bathroom door, thinking that shot an intruder who had entered the house.
“I believe that he knew that Reeva was in the bathroom and he shot four shots through the door,” Det Botha told the court.
He said the holster for Mr Pistorius’ 9mm pistol was found by the bed – a sure sign, he told the court, that the athlete must have known she was not in bed.
Detail about the aftermath of the shooting also emerged as Det Botha answered questions.
He said he arrived at the house at 04:15 on 14 February, and found Ms Steenkamp lying dead on the ground floor.
She was wearing white shorts and a black vest and was covered in towels, he said.
A lawyer and Mr Pistorius’s brother were already at the scene.
Ms Steenkamp was shot in the right side of her head, her right hip and her right elbow, Det Botha said.
An officer at the scene said that there had been previous incidents of a “domestic nature”, but would not elaborate.
Twitter records show she encouraged her followers to “get excited” about Valentine’s Day. On Wednesday, she tweeted, “It’s a beautiful day! Make things happen. Starting my day off with a yummy healthy shake from my boo,” followed by a smiley face. “Boo” is a term for boyfriend.
“She was the kindest, sweetest human being; an angel on earth and will be sorely missed,” Capacity Relations, the agency that represented her, wrote on Twitter.
Yesterday also, Steenkamp family cremated the body of the girl in a private ceremony in the southern town of Port Elizabeth South Africa.
On Thursday, the South African Police Pistorius indicted the alleged murder of his girlfriend, who was found dead in the morning of that same day with four shots to the body in the athlete’s home in Pretoria.
Pistorius became, in London last August, the first athlete with the double amputee who participated in the Olympic Games, which came to qualify for the semifinals of the 400 meter dash.