Breaking: Oscar Pistorius Bail Set at 112,000 USD & Must Surrender Passport
The defense and prosecution both completed their arguments Friday in Oscar Pistorius’ bail hearing, with the magistrate soon to rule if the double-amputee athlete can be freed before trial or if he must stay behind bars pending trial in the shooting death of his girlfriend.
The prosecution vehemently opposed bail to Chief Magistrate Desmond Nair.
Pistorius is charged with one count of premediated murder over the Feb. 14 killing of Reeva Steenkamp. He says he accidentally shot her, thinking she was a dangerous intruder inside his home, lurking in a toilet stall off his bedroom.
Pistorius’ hands trembled as he said “good morning, your worship” as the session began in Magistrate’s Court in Pretoria, South Africa’s capital. For the first time in the hearing, two representatives of the Steenkamp family were present in court, sitting behind and to the left of Pistorius in the public gallery.
Prosecutor Gerrie Nel called Pistorius’ version that he shot Steenkamp accidentally improbable and argued that Pistorius did not have to have planned the killing for days in advance for it to be premediated.
“He planned it that night when she (Steenkamp) locked herself in (the toilet),” Nel said in response to a question from the magistrate on why Pistorius hadn’t staged a break-in at his home to make his story look more believable. “The fact that we have only one survivor of that tragic night is difficult for the state.”
Pistorius’ defense lawyer, Barry Roux, brought up culpable homicide as a possible charge for the first time in the case when answering questions from the magistrate.
“He did not want to kill Reeva. He had no intent to kill Reeva,” Roux said as Pistorius began weeping again – like he has done for much of his bail hearing.
Roux said it was impossible for Pistorius, as famous as he is and with his prostheses, to escape South Africa before trial.