5 things to know about ‘Blade Runner’ Oscar...
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Oct 21, 2014  |  Vote 0    0

5 things to know about ‘Blade Runner’ Oscar Pistorius's verdict

Within minutes of the judge’s decision in Pretoria, the phrase “Only 5” was trending across South Africa.


Oscar Pistorius, the Olympic champion called “Blade Runner” for his prosthetic legs, has been sentenced to five years in prison for shooting and killing his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day, 2013.

Here are five things to know about the verdict and the case:

1. Within minutes of the judge’s decision, “Only 5” was trending on Twitter in South Africa. So was “Judge Masipa,” “Oscar,” “Vorster,” and “#Justice for Reeva.”

The psychiatrist who testified Pistorius had an “anxiety disorder” because of his missing legs was Dr. Merryl Vorster.

2. Will he spend five years in prison?

He could be transferred to house arrest in 10 months, his attorney Roxanne Adams, told reporters. That indicates the defence is not planning an appeal.

The National Prosecuting Authority, which wanted 10 years, said there is an “appetite” to appeal but no decision yet.

The African National Congress Women’s League said, “We will be making submissions to the state that an appeal will be in the interest of justice.”

His defence could apply for leave to appeal. He would be held in custody while a judge decides whether to allow bail. His lawyers could also petition the Supreme Court for leave to appeal and a judge could consider bail at that time, South African legal expert William Booth told South Africa’s News24.

3. Of Pistorius’s vulnerability in prison because of his disability, Judge Thokozile Masipa said, “I heard witness after witness overemphasizing the accused’s vulnerability. He also has excellent coping skills. He worked hard and became respected worldwide.”

4. At 1:10 p.m. local time (8:10 a.m. Toronto time), Pistorius arrived at Pretoria’s Kgosi Mampuru II prison,, which houses 7,000 other inmates, News 24 reported. The hospital area, where Pistorius would serve his sentence, has showers. Each cell has a toilet, basin, bed with mattress, blankets, sheets and pillow, and a cupboard, the South African news agency reported.

5. “There is no closure without Reeva,” the former model’s mother June Steenkamp said as she left the courthouse.

Toronto Star

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