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quaist 03-08-2014 09:30 AM

But if that neighbour's account is true, there's basically no reason to assume it actually was an accident, is there?

For how could he possibly have mistaken his girlfriend's yelling for help for an intruder hiding inside his bathroom?

sunnykerr 03-08-2014 11:37 AM

The thing is there's no reason to believe any of it was an accident.

You don't shoot an intruder four times at that height "accidentally."

Right now, the prosecution is having its say.

I must say, I find it quite the convincing account so far.

Plus, between the story of the restaurant shooting and the latest one from an ex-girlfriend testifying to Pistorius shooting out of anger from his car, it paints the picture of someone who's way too comfortable using lethal weapons.

The thing is, the defence will also have their day in court.

None of it will ever change the fact that he did kill her.

Whether it was a case of mistaken identity, he still killed her. And he was evidently shooting to kill whomever was in there.

The neighbours saying they'd heard her scream... I suppose it all depends how much time passed between her screams and her death. If they in fact actually heard her.

:shrug: I'm just saying that sometimes people think they hear something and that's not actually what they're hearing.

quaist 03-09-2014 03:30 PM

Yeah, I had also heard of him having a history of losing his temper and showing this in reaching for his gun(s)... Just scary.

sunnykerr 03-09-2014 05:20 PM

The prosecution is doing a very good job of showing what happened to Ms Steenkamp as the tragic end result of an ever-increasing escalation of scary behaviour.

I'm trying to stay neutral, reminding myself that it's their job to make it look like Pistorius is definitely guilty, which doesn't mean he intended to kill her.

At the same time, there comes a point where his immediate intentions may not matter.

It's like when someone drives drunk and kills someone. Most times, I'd assume they didn't mean to do it, but they created the situaiton whereby it was bound to happen eventually (assuming they're a habitual drink-driver).

If Pistorius had that kind of temper, knew himself to reach for a gun as easily as that... then, yeah, it doesn't really matter if, in that instant, he actually meant to kill her.

quaist 03-10-2014 03:48 PM

If he didn't know exactly where in his house his girlfriend, who was staying over night, was when he shot at this perceived intruder -- he must at least knowingly have taken the risk that she was in this bathroom, and he therefore must have considered that he might just be shooting at her.

sunnykerr 03-11-2014 07:07 PM

Well, I can forgive a lot when people are sleepy.

I know only too well how that can truly mess with your sense of space and time.

I've woken up many a time in the middle of the night completely confused as to where I was, and not as the result of drunkenness or anything like that.

The problem is, again, that this will never be an excuse for murdering someone.

Even if he did truthfully think that was an intruder... a lethal response (especially when, obviously, said "intruder" never came near to attacking him) is hardly the proper, normal response.

quaist 03-12-2014 02:08 PM

Well, I totally agree with what you said about the toll sleepiness/dizziness can take on someone's ability to properly assess any given situation.

However, I feel unable to draw the line from being tired and confused to somehow being able to actually reach for a gun, consequently shooting and killing someone in spite of that, you know?


Plus, not wanting to to judge others by my own standards, but when I find myself frightened by something, and usually even something as mundane spotting a spider does the trick there, the adrenaline rush resulting from this makes my fatigue disappear pretty quickly.

Shouldn't that be the case especially when you have reason to suspect an intruder in your home?

sunnykerr 03-12-2014 06:16 PM

I really, really, very much agree with you.

I'm just trying to see it as I would if I were some sort of gun person, which is apparently what Mr Pistorius is.

Perhaps there's a way in which you get so ridiculously comfortable around firearms that it becomes something you just do instinctually.

God, how disturbing.

Even in that event, I don't think it mitigates his responsibility.

Meanwhile, and not to change the topic exactly, but I did see that Michael Schumacher is possibly showing signs of improvement.

Considering it's been over two months, I suppose any sign is good, but I do wonder if there's any way he'll ever get back to a semblance of his former self. Seems doubtful.

quaist 03-14-2014 02:19 PM

They've obviously scaled down their expectation dramatically, too.

Now it's merely about hoping that he will eventually 'wake up', not that he's gonna recover fully to his old self.

sunnykerr 03-14-2014 06:33 PM

Is it?

I hadn't realized that.

I mean, that's where my expectations are.

But I was under the impression the family were still holding on to something a little more ambitious.

quaist 03-16-2014 02:08 PM

I had thought so too, but the article quotes Schumacher's manager as saying that they're confident that he will wake up eventually.

Maybe it's just me, but I got the impression that they had voiced higher hopes earlier, like a possible 'full' recovery.


sunnykerr 03-16-2014 05:22 PM

No, you're quite right.

They had expressed belief in a full recovery earlier.

I guess I'm th eone who assumed that, when they said "wake up," they meant "wake up and then make a full recovery."

I shouldn't have assumed.

quaist 03-18-2014 02:52 PM

Could also very well be that I just didn't read what was between the lines :D

But somehow I had the feeling that the rhetoric changed quite strikingly in comparison to the immediate aftermath of his accident.

sunnykerr 03-18-2014 07:24 PM

I suppose it's not impossible that they, too, realize that the likelihood of his recovering diminishes with every day that passes.

sunnykerr 03-20-2014 07:08 PM


Oscar Pistorius trial: Steenkamp standing when shot, expert says

Police Capt. Christiaan Mangena provides details of how Reeva Steenkamp was shot

The chief prosecutor in the Oscar Pistorius murder trial says he plans to wrap up his case early next week after calling four or five more witnesses.

Judge Thokozile Masipa granted a request on Wednesday from prosecutor Gerrie Nel to adjourn the trial until Monday so that Nel has time to consult his last witnesses. No court session was scheduled on Friday, which is a national holiday in South Africa.

Defence lawyer Barry Roux said the trial is expensive and he does not want to delay proceedings. He did not object to Nel's request.

Pistorius has been charged with murdering his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Feb. 14, 2013. The athlete acknowledges he fatally shot her, but says it was a mistake.

In the Pretoria court Wednesday, a police ballistics expert testified that Steenkamp was standing in a toilet cubicle and facing the closed door when she was hit in the right hip by the first of four hollow point bullets fired at her by Pistorius.

Steenkamp then fell back onto a magazine holder in the cubicle and was struck in the right arm and head by the last two shots fired by Pistorius with his 9 mm pistol through the door.

Pistorius's girlfriend crossed her arms over her head to protect herself, Capt. Christiaan Mangena said, when she was hit in the arm and head. He testified that he believed the second bullet shot missed Steenkamp and ricocheted off a wall inside the cubicle and broke into fragments, which caused bruising on her back.

Mangena concluded through his analysis of the shooting scene and wounds on Steenkamp's body from post-mortem photographs that one of the final two bullets went through Steenkamp's left hand before penetrating her skull as she held it over her head. The policeman said he couldn't determine the order of the last two shots.

As Mangena threw his hands up to cover his head in court and replicate the "defensive position" he said Steenkamp took as the last shots were fired, Pistorius put his fingers in his ears in an apparent attempt to block out the testimony.

June Steenkamp, Reeva's mother, also was in the courtroom and occasionally glanced at photos of the bloody scene of her daughter's shooting before looking away.

Shots fired at close distance

Police ballistics expert Mangena said the bullet that struck Steenkamp's skull broke into two fragments, one of which exited her head and struck the wall behind her. The first shot into the right hip broke Steenkamp's hip bone, Mangena said.

"I'm of the opinion that after this wound was inflicted, my lady, she dropped immediately," Mangena said, addressing the judge in court under questioning from prosecutor Gerrie Nel. Steenkamp slumped into a "seated or semi-seated position" on top of the magazine rack in the cubicle, where she was hit another two times, he said.

"She ended up with her head on top of the toilet seat, and the lower part of her body on the rack, Mangena said.

Pistorius fired from a distance of at least 60 centimetres and no further than a wall behind him, about three metres away, Mangena said. Mangena also described the impact of the type of bullets in Pistorius's gun, which were designed to cause maximum damage, he said.

"It hits the target, it opens up, it creates six talons, and these talons are sharp," Mangena said. "It cuts through the organs of a human being."

He noted the Black Talon brand of ammunition was often used for self-defence because while it caused significant damage to a human target, it was less likely to penetrate the first target and hit other people.
There's more on the site.

The idea that he possibly shot her up close (because, how can you aim that well through a door?) is just SO disturbing.

That she put her arms to try and protect herself?

Yeah, that's gonna stay with me for a while.

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