Oscar Pistorius granted bail after exhaustive hearing, lecture from judge

The New York Times has an exhaustive story on everything that went down on the final day of Oscar Pistorius’s bail hearing, which began on Tuesday and only ended about a half an hour ago. I can’t say that I’m crazy about the South African legal system after seeing this brief glimpse from Oscar Pistorius’s bail hearing – it seems like the prosecution has been forced to rush their investigation and spend hours justifying their methods before the investigation is even complete, when that time should be spent at the crime scene or talking to witnesses, etc. Anyway, long story short – Oscar was granted bail. Here’s more:

After four days of combative hearings, a South African magistrate on Friday granted bail for Oscar Pistorius, the double amputee track star accused of murdering his girlfriend, in a case that has horrified and fascinated the nation. Magistrate Desmond Nair announced the decision after hearing impassioned final arguments from the defense and the prosecution in Courtroom C of the Pretoria Magistrates Court in the presence of an emotional Mr. Pistorius, who has testified that he mistook his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, for an intruder and never intended to kill her.

Magistrate Nair said Mr. Pistorius did not represent a flight risk and was not likely to interfere with state witnesses.

”The accused has made a case to be released on bail,” the magistrate concluded. Pistorius family members in the packed courtroom shouted, “Yes!”

The magistrate set bail at 1 million rand, or about $112,000. Before announcing his ruling, the magistrate reprised the four days of conflicting arguments by defense and prosecution lawyers. Mr. Pistorius’s shoulders shook with emotion and tears fell from his eyes as, at one point, Magistrate Nair said, “The deceased died in his arms.”

Magistrate Nair said bail was not a matter of guilt and innocence but about determining whether justice would be served by holding a defendant in custody. But he took issue with the testimony and actions of the prosecution’s lead investigator, Detective Warrant Officer Hilton Botha, who has since been removed from the case, saying the officer committed “several errors and concessions” and “blundered” in gathering evidence.

“It is his evidence that may have been tarnished by cross-examination, not the state case,” he said. At the same time, the state case was not so “strong and watertight” that Mr. Pistorius “must come to the conclusion that he has to flee.”

In a two-hour summary of the case and of the laws governing bail, the magistrate also read a series of character references from friends of the athlete, who described his relationship with Ms. Steenkamp, a 29-year-old model and law school graduate, as loving and happy. The prosecution had opposed the sprinter’s application to be released on bail until a full trial, arguing that he might flee. It said Mr. Pistorius, 26, murdered Ms. Steenkamp when he fired four shots through a locked bathroom door at his home in a gated community in Pretoria on Feb. 14 while she was on the other side.

Magistrate Nair said that while the prosecution case rested on “nothing more than circumstantial evidence,” there were “improbabilities that need to be explored” in Mr. Pistorius’s account of events.

“The only person who knows what happened there is the accused,” he said. But “I cannot find that it has been established that the accused is a flight risk.”

But Magistrate Nair seemed skeptical on Friday about the risk of flight by Mr. Pistorius. “What kind of life would he lead, a person who has to use prostheses, if he has to flee” and found himself “ducking and diving every day” on artificial limbs, the magistrate asked. “His international career would be over in any event.”

[From The New York Times]

When arguing for no bail to be set, the prosecutor compared Pistorius to Julian Assange’s situation, where Assange is sitting in an Ecuadorian embassy in England – I guess the comparison is that Julian Assange “fled” because he didn’t want to go to prison/Gitmo, and Assange manages to be a high-profile fugitive too. The prosecutor also put Reeva’s murder in the context of the national and international cause of violence against women. To no avail. Also – yes, the lead detective (who is facing attempted murder charges of his own) did step down.

So, what does this mean? I think it means that Oscar got himself a star-struck, fan-boy magistrate who cares more about Oscar’s career than the victim. I also think it’s hard on the prosecution when you force them to spend hours and days laying out their case just a few days after their victim was murdered.

Photos courtesy of PR Photos and WENN.

 

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219 Responses to “Oscar Pistorius granted bail after exhaustive hearing, lecture from judge”

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  1. aims says:

    Unbelievable!! I’m speechless.

  2. anonymous fan says:

    I was actually waiting for this post.Because not only is Kaiser my fave blogger but I love how she reports this story.I cannot believe this man got granted bail.I am starting to believe that the prosecution is not going to get a fair chance to win this trial and the judge has already made up his mind.It is terrible to think that no judge wants to be the one to send away their beloved amputee hero.But the prosecution gave a good cause for him to stay in jail,and he still got bail!This case has become a travesty of justice already.And the trial hasn’t even started.

    • Lizzie says:

      But you can’t deny that the prosecution haven’t handled things super professionally either. They contaminated the crime scene remember, as well as other pretty stupid mistakes.
      You could argue that the state just wants to bring him down because he is famous.
      And as good a blogger as Kaiser is, there is no objectivity in this post, or in any of the other posts on the subject.
      Which is fine, it’s a blog, not a news outlet. But we have to remember; innocent until proven guilty.

      • Liv says:

        +1

        I so agree with you. If he’s guilty, fine then, lock him up in prison. But until now we pretty much don’t know anything.

      • Kiki says:

        Same happened here in Mexico with Florence Cassez. Prosecution made so many mistakes, they made her look innocent. Now she’s a martyr in France while her victims didn’t get justice.

      • Oops says:

        @kiki : about Florence cassez : I’m french and I doubt she’s innocent and a lot of people dislike her in France, it’s the journalits who preent her like a hero, I can’t believe she knows nothing.

      • anonymous fan says:

        Lizzie I made the point yesterday the prosecution isn’t doing a great job and that their incompetency may be the downfall of this case.And Kaiser may not be objective but this is a gossip blog,what about all the news outlets in Europe that have already decided that he’s innocent and are reporting only the parts that make him look good and make it seem like Oscar is the victim and not the womn he shot.They don’t want to see this man in jail,guilty or not.And the idea that being a celebrity is hurting his case? Come on.

      • yoyo says:

        Totally agree Lizzie. I’m not mad at the magistrate , I just find the prosecution PATHETIC. Botha is a very sad excuse for a police officer. How they could put him on the stand is beyond me: this idiot trapsed around the crime scene in his shoes!! He’s under investigation for murder(why was he not suspended then or put on a desk job)and actually testifies in court in way that shows his total lack of competence: because a product starts with the syllables ” testo” well hey it MUST be testosterone, let me not read the rest of the word! What an idiot! Pistorius’ story is ridiculous and it should have been a slam dunk to poke holes in it but all that court showed is what a joke the south african court system is. Do check out Louis Theroux investigation on the subject. It was in Johannesburg but it seems that Pretoria is no better. Basically if you have money, pay the cops, the judge whatever you’re free to go. The cops are bigger thugs than the criminals. They make the LAPD Rampart guys look like a bunch of choir boys! Congrats the prosecution, cops and Magistrate! Way to reinforce every stereotype the world has about the African continent guys! Good job!

      • Gala says:

        Exactly! ….Guilty until proven Male and Rich.

    • Rachel says:

      Not only did he get bail, but it amounted to $112,000 USD! With a charge of murder! W.T.F.

    • Anonymous_survivor says:

      As a survivor of domestic violence myself, I have to say that this whole event coupled with the recent news of the CBS broadcaster who strangled his CBS broadcaster wife chills me to the bone and activates some serious PTSD. Obviously we live in a world where injustice is common and even expected. I read this blog for fun but also appreciate Kaiser’s intelligent and sensitive coverage of this story. She is spot on.

      The collective society still blames the abused. It is ingrained. Many people don’t realizes that most women who have violence perpetrated against them by a partner are intelligent, well-educated, successful, dynamic and independent. People don’t understand why they don’t leave and are blamed for being the victim. At its base it often a case where the woman feels responsible for healing the man (usually a history of his own abuse or injustice or this case an amputee) and aligns herself with him to her own demise. The woman feels powerful enough at the beginning and sees the abuse as a by product of the man’s brokeness. Which i beleive is part of this “go oscar” ground swell of him overcoming adversity – at the price of her life. the American court system is frought with abusive men who end up with custody of children and further perpetuate abuse of the victim in the legal system.

      Reeva was trying to break the cycle. I belueve she just couldn’t believe it was happening again. This is absolutely DISGRACEFUL. If I remember correctly, even Reeva’s father initially made a comment to the extent of: we don’t know why he did this. He must be going through something we don’t know. ” the victim is dead. When will the paradigm shift?

      Thank you kaiser for bringing attention to this story.

      • Trashaddict says:

        Anonymous, I just would like to tell you that sometimes the right thing happens: I am pleased to announce that Drew Peterson, murderer of his 2 wives, was just sentenced to 38 years in prison. They couldn’t hang Stacey’s murder on him but got him on his second wife’s murder. I know we still have a long LONG way to go, but I take pride in the fact that Illinois put this jerk behind bars.

  3. Merritt says:

    I’m angry about this. The magistrate dragged it out for the longest time. he really likes to hear himself talk.

    I think Pistorius should not have been given bail. His story is ridiculous. Also the prosecution seems to have dropped the ball on the bladder info. Unless they go into it at trial. The defense made it sound like the empty bladder meant something, but not really. This is gross just a warning.

    When a person dies, there is no longer muscle control, so urine and feces almost always come out. So since she was carried away from the bathroom, so it would have potentially have been leaking out all over him, the apartment, the stairs. This investigation was so botched. Did they test his clothes?

    • Lulu says:

      Yes, I thought of that. OTOH, they have established likely time of death from mummified Eskimos buried in igloo collapses as early morning because their bladders were distended.

    • KC says:

      I assumed they were saying that she had to have already gone to the bathroom because there wasn’t any urine found at the scene, otherwise the Prosecution would have quickly shot down that theory. (It isn’t exactly hard to miss a full bladder’s worth of liquid.) But who knows, most of the information coming out about this case from both sides has been incomplete and/or illogical.

      And the audio clips that CNN played made it seem like the magistrate spent so much time talking because he was lecturing both sides about how flawed their arguments were and how they needed to do a much better job when this finally goes to trial.

  4. gogoGorilla says:

    Sickening. I feel so sorry for her family because, as usual, the victim is clearly already forgotten here. I bet, with his fame and money, he gets off with some minor slap on the wrist. If nothing else, I hope his career is totally done, though, and that he is not allowed to compete in any future Olympics.

    What a lying piece of murderous shit.

  5. Aud says:

    I’m blaming the incompetency of the police department, especially the police commissioner. That department didn’t know that the investigating officer had charges against him?
    No forensics were supplied – because they didn’t appear to be reported from the state’s perspective.
    What is the bet that this case turns out with a result like OJ?

  6. Annie says:

    There was no injustice, people! The law was followed. The prosecution didn’t present a strong case and the police f****ed up a lot. Don’t let your morbid curiosity and your love for murder trials to dictate how you feel about this case or him, and be objective. If they don’t have a strong case for premeditated murder they can not keep him locked up, simple as that.

    If you’re so determined to prove he planned this, you need more than circumsancial claims and the prosecution failed at that. No proof of fighting other than what some neighbors “think they heard” and they live 600m away. Not even next door. No signs of abuse on her body. No evidence of fighting inside the house, objects thrown, etc. If you’re so determined to find him guilty where are the phone records? Where are his urine tests? Prove that he is hiding something.

    So far I do believe him but I’ll wait for the trial. I was waiting for more incriminating stuff to come out at this bail hearing, in which they had to prove he planned this and they didn’t, so I’m being more and more swayed to his side, unless I see actual receipts. The fact that he was granted bail is huge and it means something. The police have not really found contradictions.

    Crazier things have happened. Just wait for more evidence and don’t be part of the angry mob that is motivated by how the media presents things to sensationalize everything like they do just to sell papers. He’s going to jail anyway. Even if it’s manslaugher he will be jailed for a while.

    Premeditated murder is hard to prove.

    • Gia says:

      Absolutely. It was the right decision. The Prosecution had to prove that he was either a flight risk, prone to violence or granting bail would cause public outrage, which they couldn’t do.I’m realy shocked by Kaiser’s take on all this. I feel like people are drinking the kool-aid instead of reading the facts.

      • Erin says:

        I understand your point, but isn’t a murder charge enough reason to think someone is prone to violence?

      • Gia says:

        Well, he’s claiming, and i’m paraphrasing here, that he was defending himself against what he thought was an intruder. So they are extenuating circumstances. The Prosecution needed to show that in his everyday life, throughout his life, he has shown a history of violence.

      • Sam says:

        But I think he largely misinterpreted “flight risk.” He hung a lot of his decision on the argument that because Pistorius is disabled, it would be harder for him to flee. I can say I’ve seen disabled people be declared flight risks. It doesn’t have much to do on whether you could PHYSICALLY get out of the country – it has to do with how wealthy you are, whether you have connections abroad, etc. That sort of thing. He gave a lot of weight to the argument that Pistorius would have a tough time getting through airport security. Does he not believe that a man as connected and wealthy as Pistorius could not arrange for private transporation? He sort of bungled that judgment, to me. At least in most nations I’ve been to personally, there is little doubt Pistorius would be labeled a flight risk.

      • Merritt says:

        I think the fact that by his own admission that he shoots first and then verifies is enough reason to think he is dangerous to the public.

      • Tiffany says:

        “He gave a lot of weight to the argument that Pistorius would have a tough time getting through airport security. Does he not believe that a man as connected and wealthy as Pistorius could not arrange for private transporation?”

        Exactly! Hello charter flight!

      • KC says:

        @Sam: The judge didn’t bring up his disability because it would physically make it harder for him to flee, it was because his disability would make it harder for him to blend in. If he flees everyone in the world will be looking for a man with two artificial legs and someone with two artificial legs will have a different gate and won’t be able to get through a security search without taking them off, thus giving himself away. Unless he takes a private flight to an unpopulated area like you said.

        The judge used his disability for the same argument you could make for someone who is 6’6″+ tall: It’s not as easy for them to just disappear in the crowd as it is for the average person.

    • Oops says:

      even if it’s an accident (which I found doubtful) he’s dangerous, he killed someone because he was afraid, if it’s true he can do it again, for me in this hypothesis he has a mental problem.

      • DGO says:

        An accidental killing isn’t the same as an intentional act. I don’t know what happened in this case, but I do know that a lot of what the US press is reporting is false. For example, how many people are repeating the bashed in head story? We now know that’s a false claim.

      • Trashaddict says:

        Aud, although I still find it reprehensible, I would not be terribly surprised if OP had hired a PR agent on instructions of his lawyer. Anybody know whether this phone call came before or after hiring the lawyer?

    • TheOriginalKitten says:

      You’re being “more and more swayed to his side”?

      You’ve been trolling every Pistorious thread on C/B, insisting on his innocence since he was arrested.

      I mean, that’s fine-you’re entitled to your opinion but to pretend like you’re just an objective observer is pretty silly and rather unbelievable, much like Pistorious’s account of what happened that night.

    • L says:

      First off, he murdered her on Thursday and his bail hearing started on Monday. This is not a episode of CSI, where things are solved in 24 hours. And with the actual evidence and testimony gathered in 48 hours, they had a strong case.

      “premeditation” means something different in SA law than US law. It’s not a question of planning it before with receipts etc, but a question of did he think, I’m going to go kill someone, get his gun, and shoot with a intent to kill. And he’s self admitted to that in his own testimony when he thought it was a intruder.

    • Aud says:

      The police didn’t have time to find anything and they themselves compromised the crime scene, following Pistorius compromising the crime scene first by moving the body, but that wasn’t even mentioned.
      Also, any “loving partner” would call an ambulance first, not call their family and then move the body.
      Please…
      Enough excuses.
      Even the magistrate mentioned the improbabilities, but it appears that the life of a woman in South Africa is worthless.
      If the tables were turned and she shot him, because he is some type of celebrity or a ‘higher’ celebrity, she probably wouldn’t get bail.
      Also what time did the police have to get telephone call evidence from telephone companies?
      No time.
      That’s the reality.
      I’ve worked in a telco and I know it takes more than a day to process telephone records. So this time frame: Thursday, to Monday, is quite improbable for anyone to obtain phone records. It seems like the state is willing to compromise evidence, by assigning a tainted investigator, and then to intentionally compromise the case.
      It’s shameful and disgusting and has nothing to do with law, but corruption at the highest levels of police.
      This type of outcome only reinforces violence toward women.
      Ultimately the scenario is inconsistent. He would have noticed her in bed or out of it, and when he allegedly called out, she would have answered. But not only that, if you hear a noise, you would immediately seek to see where your partner is. He didn’t. Why?
      And I’m with the prosecutor. He offered an affidavit, which couldn’t be tested and didn’t allow himself to be cross examined because he knows very well that his story does not pan out.
      An accidental shooting doesn’t involve four gunshots!

    • Masque says:

      The granting of bail just shows the judge does not think OP is a threat to society at large (most abusers aren’t) and is not a flight risk. Not for one second should anyone think OP’s innocence has been proven.

    • Aud says:

      Um hello, prone to violence: the guy arms himself to the hilt. They could have referred to one of his Tweets to see that he approaches issues ln his home with his gun drawn.
      Also, the fact that he just shot through a door multiple times. Proof of violent behaviour right there. The rest is just BS and we all know it.
      A gun accident doesn’t involve 4 shots.
      And the probability of Reeva not answering to his yelling out is just BS – it’s 3 in the morning, quiet enough for her – in the toilet -to hear him, for goodness sake.
      Did you not hear the conditions? He is not allowed to have access to any firearms. What does that indicate? It indicates that they acknowledge that he was violent and has a propensity for violence with a firearm. The state is just idling along. They will find a way to acquit him and another female victim will be another statistic.

      I think some of you (i.e. Gia) are forgetting that the real victim here is Reeva not Oscar, because the tone of your responses indicates that Oscar is the victim.

    • Tiffany says:

      “If you’re so determined to prove he planned this, you need more than circumsancial claims and the prosecution failed at that”

      They only had a few days to pull this together, and it wasn’t even the full trial, this was just about bail. I think far too much was expected, and it should have been held off a little so that the prosecution could actually gather the needed information.

    • littlestar says:

      People keep saying the neighbours live 600m away. If the house they showed pictures of on the Daily Mail is actually Pistorius’ house, then they live a hell of a lot closer than 600m. Does anyone have links to pictures of his house to prove the neighbours are 600m away? Because both of the neighbouring houses in the pics on the DM are right BESIDE Pistorius’ house.

    • qwerty says:

      I have been following the Guardian coverage of events, and it seems that as time progresses, the evidence of the prosecution became more and more circumstantial and that some of the original details leaked to the media (i.e. Reeve’s alleged crushed skull and the bloody cricket bat) were not discussed further in the bail hearing.

  7. Sam says:

    I’m surprised first degree murder is even a bailable offense. A lot of nations simply make it a no-bail offense, which would seem more prudent here.

    It also doesn’t make much sense to have the standard be whether he poses a risk of violence. This whole thing wouldn’t be going on if he hadn’t by his own admission, shot his girlfriend – so I’m not sure what more “evidence of violence” is really necessary here.

    • Lucrezia says:

      It’s whether you’re PRONE to violence. Basically, is there a risk he’s going to injure someone while on bail?

      It’s there to stop judges bailing psychotics (who are going to re-offend because they’re insane) or gang-types (who might attack witnesses or go for revenge or something.)

      Be honest … even if you’re absolutely certain he’s guilty, surely you don’t seriously think he’d attack someone while on bail?

      • Sam says:

        But what standard do we go by? Pistorius’s own history indicates that he’s rather trigger happy (look at his twitter) and there is a verified police record of domestic issues at the home and his prior 2009 arrest for hitting an ex. Do all these things, taken together, not indicate that Pistorius poses a risk to somebody (doesn’t have to be specific?).

      • Merritt says:

        A person who shoots first is always a danger to the public.

      • Amelia says:

        Ah the Guardian … not my regular paper, but they do a damn good live blog.

      • Lucrezia says:

        Ack, where’d my comment go?

        Well now you’ll only get the short
        version (which is probably better, since I tend to waffle):

        Going by guardian’s live-blog, the judge seemed concerned by the past incidents, but differentiated between reports and charges, which is fair. He also criticised the prosecution’s efforts at proving OP was prone to violence.

        So I think his standard was fine. Look at it this way: if everyone who didn’t have a totally clean slate got refused bail, hardly anyone would get it (because how many accused crims have a totally clean slate?).

        The question is how many of those with a “concerning” history actually end up committing violent crimes while on bail. I’m sure some do, but are we talking 1 in 10, or 1 in a million?

  8. Bad Irene says:

    Thoughts go out to Reevas family. I cant imagine the pain they must be in right now. Otherwise I am just going to step away from coverage of this for a while. It just seems like women in this world are totally disposable.She is now just a footnote in his life story.

  9. Kate says:

    Everyone needs to wrap their mind around the fact that he will not be convicted. While I definitely think this is a domestic violence situation (I’d call it manslaughter, not pre-meditated murder, but that’s US law, not SA law), there is too much noise around all of it to get a conviction. He’s going free. Whether his image will ever be repaired is a different issue. I doubt it. He’s the new OJ.

  10. lena80 says:

    Oh you don’t say, A RICH, handsome, white male is once again granted bail when his story makes no FLUCKING sense!

    Also I HATE that the media is focusing on Reeva’s looks! Every story they post pictures of her modeling in her bikini…”sexing up” a victim of domestic violence!

    • KLaw says:

      I know! The woman was smart, too! She has a law degree!

      I tried to hypothetically swallow Oscar’s story (on the theory that he is seriously mentally ill and paranoid), and what lingers and disturbs me the most is that she had LOCKED the door and she was in the bathroom with her cell phone at 3am. Something isn’t right.

      • Sofia says:

        I’m by no means convinced that he’s innocent, BUT, I lock the door to the bathroom when I go at 3am. (What? I don’t want anyone walking in there while I’m going to the bathroom.) I’ve also been known to bring my phone with me so I can check emails, voicemail, or do other things of that nature, especially if I’m over at someone else’s house because it’s been longer than normal since I’ve been on my computer.

  11. shewolf says:

    The possible crime that was committed was horrific, why was this not taken into consideration when granting bail? Does law even work like this? It’s not like he was accused of stealing candy from the corner store. I understand that he could be innocent of these charges and not being granted bail would be unfair but hey… sometimes you get a shit deal and I think this situation would more than justify this.

    I don’t agree with the comment that the magistrate is a “fan boy.” Magistrate Nair made it very clear that the prosecution had made three mistakes. The first mistake was that they didn’t illustrate Pistorius’s propensity toward violence enough. The second mistake was that the prosecution did not show that there would be massive public outrage if he was granted bail and the third was that he did not think the prosecution’s case was strong enough to indicate that Pistorius could pose a flight risk. Unfortunately a judge can not operate on whether or not he thinks Pistorius is guilty and s/he must operate on information presented before them. It makes me wonder if Nair would have preferred not to grant bail but didn’t have enough grounds due to the prosecution’s sloppiness.

    In addition to this, Nair made it extremely clear that there were many MANY many holes and questions in Pistorius account of events.

    Fan boy? No. Operating within the constraints of what was presented before him? Yes.

    I don’t know if Pistorius is guilty and if you read the transcripts anyone can see that with the information that has been covered thus far it could go either way. It is because of this fact that I really hope the prosecution can get it together enough to prove their theory come June 4th. With a case like this both sides need to be as strong as the other otherwise one side will get steamrolled despite whatever the truth happens to be. The truth is ultimately what this is all about, not popular opinion. I urge everyone to read the court transcripts.

    • Aud says:

      What? We go by Pistorius’ convenient affidavit?
      The fact that he didn’t allow himself to be cross examined?
      The improbabilities, like the surreal story he gives about calling out loud enough and not getting a response. The dead cannot speak, that’s for sure.
      What about the glaring inconsistency that he is so very afraid for his safety, yet his balcony was open.

      • shewolf says:

        Aud – I’m not sure what your point is? My comment was that law was followed today and that the facts we currently have can indicate innocence and guilt. We have to go by information presented not popular opinion. The same questions you stated are the same ones I have and the same ones Magistrate Nair posed.

        Edited to add: We’re you talking about how I said everyone should read the court transcripts? I wasnt referring to Pistorius’s affidavit. I was referring to the word for word court proceedings.

      • Lucrezia says:

        If you read the affidavit, it’s not actually clear that the door was open. The idea that he “got up to get the fan and close the door” is terribly bad paraphrasing from reporters.

        I agree that it would be a major flaw in his defense if it was open while he was sleeping. However, it’s entirely possible the door WAS closed, and he simply didn’t mention opening it on his way out. He didn’t mention getting out of bed, or putting down the fan either.

      • EscapedConvent says:

        The open balcony door bothers me too—bothers me a lot. I’m trying to imagine myself in this situation, & I doubt that I would go to bed with the balcony door open if I were worried about safety & security. If I did, it wouldn’t be deliberate, it would be because I forgot about it.

        I still don’t think you fire four shots into a locked door, whatever else is happening. That’s trigger-happiness.

        This headline was not a surprise at all. I never thought that he would be denied bail.

      • shewolf says:

        I agree with Lucretia, it was never said that the door was already open. Pistorius’s own affidavit nor the prosecution ever made this claim. There are so many fine details to comb through here.

    • kayla says:

      shewolf:

      +1

      it seemed almost begrudgingly to me, that he granted bail. more i’m doing this because i can’t point to a reason not to.

    • GiGi says:

      I definitely agree – and we should make it clear, as Magistrate Nair did, that no evidence or supposition presented during the bail hearing is part of the actual trial. They are two completely separate proceedings.

    • Poink517 says:

      Public outrage right here! *raises hand*

      • shewolf says:

        Poink – I agree. I had a feeling he’d get bail but its shocking. I don’t know if he is guilty or not at this point in time given the evidence presented but it just seems wrong that he’s out on bail given the charges against him. If you scroll down someone named Radar commented on how bail works in South Africa and it explained a lot to me even if it doesnt fly by North American standards.

        And by public outrage I am sure they were referring to security risks in terms of riots or brawls. Im pretty sure our evil eyes and lack of smiles aren’t enough to qualify as a social security threat! lol

  12. Feebee says:

    Look, I think he’s guilty of murdering his girlfriend and meaning to do it but that’s not really what the bail hearing is about. It’s a little harsh to accuse the magistrate of being a fan-boy when you consider bail seemed unlikely until the lead investigator’s pending attempted murder charges came to light. Can you imagine how that would have gone over in the US? The defense would have been all over it too. I think who he is had a little to do with it but that happens all the time in every justice system.

    The South African justice system (sorry South Africans) seems to be convoluted. I really don’t understand why it takes four takes to decide bail, but then again I don’t like the four minutes it appears to take in some cases here in the US.

    Yeah, he’s free on bail but he’s a marked man. I just hope the prosecution has it together for the trial.

    It was a little distasteful to see his coach turn up and talk about getting him back into training to clear his head BEFORE bail had been granted. Gives a little insight into the world he lives and thinks in. That he’s untouchable. He’s not. But this bail thing isn’t the end of the world.

    • Aud says:

      It takes 4 attempts because he is a sports celebrity.
      If it was anyone else, they wouldn’t even give a damn, and it would be over in less than a day.

    • bluhare says:

      The Daily Mail had a video (which I didn’t watch) of his agent going to visit him in jail to discuss his career. And this was either over the weekend or earlier this week. Disgusting.

      • TheOriginalKitten says:

        I saw that shit this morning, Bluhare.

        “I think it would be best for him to get his head back into training.” I shouldn’t use quotes because I’m paraphrasing but it was VERY close to that.

        That agent is a fucking vulture-nice to see where the priorities lay for Pistorious’s group and his actions are a reminder of what a public commodity Pistorious is to SA.

        LOTS of leeches with LOTS of money riding on this guy’s career.

  13. Hazel says:

    I was mad and sad watching and listening to the magistrate, I wasnt shocked he will be granted bail with way the police officer was discredited. The magistrate sounded like he believed oscar and like this was a final verdict. The conditions of the bail where he said Oscar will not return to him home but undisclosed location and report to the police every day doesnt cut it for me. Thats the problem africa has, men killing their wives and girlfriends and getting awaay with it or we never hear about the case again, Oscar being a celebrity doesnt make it any different. I have feeling he will take his life if found guilty. Lets wait for the trial in june but I dont see it looking bright. I feel for Reeva’s family.

  14. T.C. says:

    “What kind of life would he lead, a person who has to use prostheses”. WTF? He should get bail because a person using prostheses couldn’t possibly jump bail and run away? Lol this judge needs to talk to some bounty hunters who will tell you tales. A world famous athlete with money, opportunity and sycophants will find a way to escape if he thinks he might end up in prision for life. Unbelievable using his disability this way.

    Kaiser,
    Thank you so much for putting up Reeva’s pictures with this story. We shouldn’t forget her during this trial, she was someone’s daughter who did nothing to deserve death.

    • lena80 says:

      I just hate that bikinis pics are being used in the media as a means to “sex up” a victim of domestic violence…and Kaiser, please don’t think I’m accusing you of doing this. I know that was part of Reeva’s career…it just rubs me the wrong way.

      • Katie Too says:

        Other than the very obvious act of killing her, what evidence do we have that she was a victim of such? Just playing devil’s advocate and also wondering if there has been anything other than speculation Reeva’s body will show evidence of being hit with the bat.

      • lena80 says:

        Hmm, well I know his ex girlfriends, two I believe, said he was violent towards them and I know one their mother’s backed up her daughter’s claims. I really don’t understand why no one focused on her skull being crushed. I think he beat her to death with cricket bat and then shot her to make it “look” like a intruder situation.

      • Amelia says:

        Katie Too;
        As far as I know, the autopsy report has not, and will not be released to the public. So really all we know is that three bullets hit Reeva.
        I think the cricket bat is mostly speculation and I suppose it’s conceivable that he dropped it into a pool of blood after breaking down the door with it.
        I’m not saying that’s necessarily what happened, but I get the feeling that we would have heard through the court transcripts and through the prosecution’s case if he used it as a weapon against Reeva. If he did then I’m sure the prosecution would have a much stronger case for the premeditated murder charge.
        I know one of the major arguments for the cricket bat theory is that Reeva supposedly had fractures of the skull, but I honestly don’t have a clue if that’s true or not. I suppose if you’re hit in the head with a bullet, fractures are to be expected. I mean, look at little Malala Yousafzai; she’s had a great deal of cranial reconstruction surgery and is expecting more, I believe.

      • Lucrezia says:

        During the bail-hearing, Botha (the detective) said the autopsy showed no signs of assault, nor defensive wounds.

        “Skull crushed by cricket bat” would definitely be a sign of assault, so the whole thing was a media fabrication.

        Anywhere else, reporting those kind of rumours during a bail-hearing would have the media being found in contempt of court. In SA they don’t have that constraint (no juries to contaminate), so there’s going to be a lot more random speculation floating around that normal.

  15. Amelia says:

    “…I think it means that Oscar got himself a star-struck, fan-boy magistrate who cares more about Oscar’s career than the victim…”
    Honestly, I thought the exact opposite.
    Apart from loving the sound of his own voice, Nair seems to be a shrewd man with his head screwed on, imo.
    I was reading through the Guardian’s live coverage and it was very informative. He gave good arguments for and against both sides and it was stated that there were certain requirements that needed to be fulfilled if bail was to be successfully opposed; reading through the day’s coverage, it would seem that the criteria needed was not fulfilled. Whether or not that’s because OP has a monster of a lawyer remains to be seen.
    Nair seems to be doing things by the book. It was ascertained that Pistorius isn’t a flight risk amongst other things including a major balls up by the police, so bail was granted.
    The prosecution didn’t present a strong enough case.
    I’m positive there’s a lot more to this story that has yet to be discovered, but guilty or not, Nair couldn’t very well oppose bail if what I’ve been reading is correct.
    RIP Reeva.

    • Catlady says:

      I agree. At this point I don’t have enough information to make a reasonable judgement for or against, but I will say that in some ways the claim he intentionally murdered her just does not make sense. Why would he and risk losing everything, and in such a brutal fashion? He didn’t run either. There is so much just odd about this case and I think more valid information, rather than gossip and speculation, needs to be presented in order to make an argument about what happened either way.

    • Gia says:

      Absolutely. I work in the legal field and the length and detail of the Magisrate’s decision was totally on point. People watch too much legal drama tv and think they know what a real Court room and legal system is like, which is NOTHING, even remotely, like television.

      • Cookingpan says:

        +1 people also watch those legal dramas in chunks of 42 mins… Real life takes a little longer. Chief Magistrate Nair demonstrated a thoroughness which was lacking in the prosecution and an amazing amount of compassion.

      • Sam says:

        The problem is that his analysis was not so thorough or on point. He basically figured that Pistorius isn’t a flight risk because dude has no legs and couldn’t just waltz through airport security (as in anyone can nowadays).

        Flight risk isn’t based solely off of disability. It’s also about wealth, connections abroad and how easily one could get out of the country. Pistorius is a wealthy man with a wide international network. Do you really believe that he would have a hard time slipping out of the country, even without a passport (and just an fyi, many wealthy people hold multiple passports or citizenships, so that is extra easy for many of them). They can get private transportation, so airport security isn’t an issue.

        Under a normal analysis, he is almost certainly a flight risk. If the magistrate was going to find otherwise, he needed to present a more thourough and convincing analysis. Which he failed to do. So I can’t see how you feel comfortable calling it good (especially if you have any kind of legal training).

      • GiGi says:

        Good point, Gia. If I were that judge, I’d have covered my a$$, too… there would have been so many trial precedents quoted, we’d still be in court, lol!

        He seemed to really want to be certain everyone knew he’d done his due diligence with his deliberation.

      • bluhare says:

        Yeah, apparently, the judge has never heard of private planes or boats. No security there.

  16. Paige says:

    I’m glad the majority of you arent my judge or jury. His story sounds plausible to me. Isnt one innocent until proven guilty? It’s possible it happened exactly as he said it did. Why so eager to hang this guy out to dry when you dont know all the facts? That’s not right.

    • Squiz says:

      Whether or not he premeditated to kill someone, he did in fact kill someone. He may very well have not thought Reeva was there, but he went bounding in there with the intent to kill whoever was behind that door. Sorry, I agree with the prosecution (and the judge) he didn’t wake Reeva up and flee the bedroom, or call the police, security or anyone, he didn’t even (by his admission) put on his legs which makes him feel less vulnerable; he bounded his way in there and plugged the person on the other side of the door, not once but 4 times. He killed someone, he shouldn’t get a “Oh never mind, poor you! Go back to your life”

      If there was a doubt that he pulled the trigger or if there was someone who was pointing a gun at him and killed someone else accidently, I can accept he could be innocent, but he isn’t. He is guilty of a homicide.

      • Paige says:

        It was an accident. A horrible accident and poor judgement. He will have to live with this for the rest of his life. Doctors screw up in the operating room all of the time and people die because of it. Are they then considered a murderer? Is it a homicide? Nope! And they suffer no consequences. I highly doubt Oscar is a flight risk. He should be let out on bail. I believe his story.

      • TheOriginalKitten says:

        Paige-you get that this is a gossip website and not an actual courtroom right? People are gonna have their opinions. Nobody here is a judge or on a jury and nobody is obligated to be objective.

        Surgeons who save lives being compared to an insecure guy brandishing a gun and shooting his girlfriend three times through a closed door——-> EPIC. FAIL.

        Try again.

      • Squiz says:

        @Paige – Are you seriously trying to compare a doctor trying to save a life with someone who intentionally fires 4 bullets into a door to kill the person on the other side?

      • marie says:

        @ Paige.. seriously?!? people that think like you are the reason this guy will get off with only a slap on the wrist when he really deserves a life time behind bars.

      • bluhare says:

        Paige, an accident might be one bullet through the door and an immediate calling of 911 (or the SA equivalent). Not four bullets and god knows how many phone calls to everyone except EMTs.

    • DGO says:

      Some parts of his story sound very plausible to me, and some parts of his story do not. I am waiting to hear all the evidence before I form an opinion on this, but I do know that the way the prosecution has presented this so far, has not been credible.

  17. Squiz says:

    I am not suprised. I had a feeling he was going to get bail; especially this morning after reading http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/feb/22/paraplegic-remand-south-africa which is absolutely horrifying. If OP endures this then the world will hear a lot more about it; but if he doesn’t and got it cushy, then there would be complaints for the opposite.

    Anyway (I am perfectly aware how much I actually ramble – sorry) what I found WTF about today was the judge giving tips to both parties for when it comes to trial. His pauses reminded me of revealing who will win a reality show.

    The cheers were disgusting to hear! I felt sorry for Reeva’s family who were present.

    When this goes to trial, if he gets off or a light sentence, it will lead to a very dangerous precedent

    • brin says:

      Right?! WTH…cheering? He didn’t just win a race.

    • K.T. says:

      Um, one of the parts where I get creeped out are about this dumbass’s family was their media moves. The granny saying she believes him 100%. His dad and Uncle statements. The cheer. That they did not put a rep seemingly in Reeva’s funeral. They present him like he’s the lil victim not the dead person he killed from stupidity/premeditated rage. Their playing the game and like the coach act like a bunch of enablers and media-handlers of their ‘innocent’ charge. It’s spin. Perhaps what would be more respectful is to keep a dignified silence out of reflect to the women he killed until after the bail hearing, or just one statement. Not do much, lets look got more careful articles from the script.

      Classy is the sad reaction of Reeva family. Not playing the media game, seemingly forgiving or just frozen. I suspect that’s a non doctored response.

      God, I’m going to have to get my outrage outta this story! Figure it’s going yo get worse with how the media is portraying him as ‘lover’ mistaking ‘girlfriend’ for intruder. How but ‘shit for brains’ mistaking ‘public’ for ‘sycophants’, sigh – it’s prolly gonna work!

    • Rose says:

      I think the pauses are a bit of a lawyer thing. My dad does them all the time, sometimes they’re literally ten seconds long (possibly even longer). It’s always annoyed me so I just roll my hand to motion for him to talk more quickly. It never works.

  18. capepopsie says:

    What a mess. Poor woman. I only hope that justice will prevail. Even if his story is true, it doesnt take away the guilt from his shoulders.Thats why people shouldnt have guns lying around.- Its just a question of time before this happens. When will they ever learn? And if his story doesnt add upp, its just disgusting and I am left speechless!

  19. Minnie says:

    I think he should NOT have been let out on bail. At the end of the day, he admitted he killed another human being. Murder. And if he thinks for 1 sec he MIGHT end up in prison, he IS a flight risk!

  20. aud says:

    wonder if this is the same judge for the trial(south africa doesn’t do trial by jury)

    I have the feeling he’s going to go free. south africa is too messed up(cops and judges) to convict.

    It’s like the judge was basically saying the prosecution’s case sucks and he shouldn’t flee cause he’ll be found not guilty anyways

  21. Guesto says:

    Well I listened to the entire summary and I thought Nair did an extremely thorough and careful (laborious but warranted imo) job in outlining why it was he had to come to the conclusion he came to. Had the prosecution been even a fraction as thorough as Nair had, then the decision to grant bail may well have been different. Nair can only work with the material he’s given and he was at pains to point out why that material fell so short on so many scores.

    To accuse him of being star-struck is ridiculous, as anyone who actually listened to or read the transcript would know.

  22. Radar says:

    “The circumstances under which a court may grant bail to an accused person charged with a heinous crime are widely misunderstood in South Africa. Although the rules around the granting of bail are relative strict if compared to many other constitutional democracies, a court is not supposed to withhold bail merely in order to punish the accused or to demonstrate disapproval of alleged crime committed by the bail applicant. To do so would amount to a form of detention without trial, which was widely used during in the apartheid era against political opponents of the National Party regime. I fear that many South Africans considering the merits of granting bail to murder accused Oscar Pistorius will lose sight of this important fact.”
    http://constitutionallyspeaking.co.za/oscar-pistorius-and-the-granting-of-bail/

    • Sam says:

      I still think that there’s something up with the whole “flight risk” issue. The magistrate seemed to be basing his “flight risk” determination on how easily Pistorius could physically move about, which seems a bit…odd. At least in the US, “flight risk” isn’t generally about mobility overall, it’s about the defendant’s money, resources, foreign connections, etc.. All of which Pistorius seems to have plenty of. So I think his flight risk analysis was pretty off, because he did too strict of a literal analysis. That’s not a variance in national laws, that’s just an expansion of what flight risk actually means.

      • Amelia says:

        I think the reference to his prostheses was with regard to airport security as opposed to everyday walking about; he’d light up like a Christmas tree if he tried to get through with them.
        And then I think there was a bit about maintenance and medical treatment for his stumps.
        But, mobility issues aside, Pistorius still can’t leave SA because he’s been ordered to hand over his passports.

      • Sam says:

        Amelia: I remember watching the Olympic special about Pistorius in the run-up to his race. The argument about maintenance is largely bunk, because he admits freely that his legs don’t require any special maintenance – he’s an amputee, he doesn’t have a long-time chronic condition that would tie him to any particular area. He can go anywhere. The other problem is that most nations recognize that wealthy people have ways of skirting around the rules. Do you really believe that Pistorius, with the wealth and connections he has, would be forced to use a conventional airport? Rich people can arrange for private transit quite easily. As to your last point, I’ll just say that I always find it sort of funny when people say “he’s can’t leave, they made him surrender his passport.” If our justice system had a dollar for every person who jumped without a passport, we’d be in a surplus right now. Pistorius fits the best definition of a flight risk by most estimates – so there’s no reason to not find him to be one.

      • Masque says:

        Well yes and no. Part of the criteria for being a flight risk is being able to blend in. OP’s current prostetics would make him stand out. Of course he could use different prostethics that give the impression of having legs but the judge may also be trying to say OP’s fame as an athlete as well as an athlete with a disability makes it hard for him to blend with the masses.

        But that’s just my guess.

      • Mich says:

        South Africa is surrounded east, south and west by the Indian and Atlantic Oceans. Small airstrips exist across the country.

        PLENTY of people being heavily watched by a government far more efficient than the current one successfully escaped during Apartheid.

      • Trashaddict says:

        Masque, have you seen pictures of OP in pants?
        I have no doubt he would “blend in” just fine.
        And besides private planes, from what I can find it looks like South Africa’s borders are kind of porous, who says he wouldn’t drive out?

    • shewolf says:

      Radar – thank you! This answers a few of the questions I posted above! I did not realise how bail works in South Africa and the relation to being detained without trail/apartheid. Again, thank you!

    • Lucrezia says:

      Thank you Radar, that makes a lot of sense.

    • Gia says:

      Radar- How dare you spout facts and logic around here!!

  23. Aud says:

    I wouldn’t want to be in the position of her family. When I listened to the decision, I was floored.
    But I don’t think the judge is a fanboy. This trial has been publicised and I doubt a magistrate would risk their career.
    The reality is that the state screwed up, which is no surprise. It’s South Africa.
    Don’t tell me that the police commissioner had no idea about the investigating officer or didn’t consider assigning a more senior investigating officer. Talk about police incompetence and this was what swayed it to bail approval.

  24. Nicolette says:

    I am so sick of judges and juries bowing down to celebrities as they ignore their various crimes. Were it one of us, we would be treated much differently. Just because someone is an entertainer or athlete doesn’t hold them above anyone, they are human just the same as the rest of us.

  25. Sarah says:

    I was shocked to hear he got bail but now I think the real concern is this magistrate’s thinking process. Please tell me he’s not the person who’s deciding pistorious’s fate

  26. WTF says:

    This is disrespectful towards Reeva Steenkamp!!! She was killed with four shots!

  27. RHONYC says:

    ISN’T ‘WOMEN’S RIGHTS IN AFRICA’ AN OXYMORON? :roll:

  28. Maria says:

    Hi Everyone

    Did you hear that Oscar may resume his training on Monday…IMAGINE, his coach says he wants him to start to help..clear his mind….

    As I write this I east the last of my Valentine cake. Free and running before the Valentine treats are even finished. I wonder what Reeva´s gift was to him BTW.

    hope is was a jar of Viagra

    • Really? says:

      I read that she had tweeted him and asked what Valentine surprise he had in mind for her…i am so very saddened for Reeva…if it were my daughter…how does one get over the senseless craziness of it? And she was at home in a “safe” place, not like “wrong place, wrong time…” and if he were my son, i’d just ask him “how could you?” There is just no way i could wrap my brain around this being an accident…it’s freaking RECKLESS and hence dangerous. Regardless of how the trial will try to paint it, he is a danger and he needs to be kept out of mainstream society. His whole self defense story sounds completely ludicrous. Hello, look next to you, Reeva’s not there…hello, that might be her making noise in the bathroom…hello, ask first and maybe shoot later but ONLY if you are confronted by a real life-threatening situation…and yet, he does none of this, shoots through a bathroom door like a cowardly maniac and days later leaves a court to a throng of cheering idiots…i’m sad and disgusted by this…poor, poor Reeva…and her poor parents, her family…and that idiot OP crying and reading the Bible saying he was spooked and it was just an accident. OVER IT.

    • DGO says:

      She was going to give him a framed picture of the two of them.

  29. lucy says:

    I came here only to say that this guy is not a celebrity and I do not condone him being treated as one. This is a news story, one I do not wish to read about. I do not want to know this guy’s name or face or story. Please reconsider his being featured on a celebrity blog. He deserves no such attention.

    • Rachel says:

      Lucy, how is Oscar Pistorius not a celebrity? He’s possibly the most famous Paralympian athlete in the history of the games after he competed in the Olympics at London 2012 as well.

      Regardless of whether you want to know about him, he commanded a great deal of media attention even before this horrible case started (possibly the dictionary definition of a celebrity) and the victim in this case was an up-and-coming young model.

      If you don’t want to read about him then I would recommend that you stop clicking on links to stories about his trial. However much I would like to agree that he doesn’t deserve our attention, the fact that he has killed his young girlfriend, either intentionally or by accident, is truly unforgivable with its connotations of either domestic violence or gun crime respectively. For that reason I hope that the shattered career of Oscar Pistorius becomes a well-known example of the consequences of these actions – that is, if the SA court do the decent thing and don’t let him off lightly.

      • lucy says:

        Thanks for the feedback. I come to CB to celebrate (and/or skewer) sartorial and pop culture frivolity. I do not consider crime frivolous. Murder deserves justice, not gossip. Treating it as such seems so disrespectful for the victims. CB’s “escapism can be smart” motto doesn’t fit when what is published is not escapism, but is instead all too disappointingly real.

    • GiGi says:

      Lucky for you CB publishes loads of stories every day about real-life honest-to-goodness celebs. Why don’t you just skip the ones you don’t like?

  30. Esti says:

    The decision whether to grant bail is entirely different than the decision on whether he is guilty or not. The judge’s ruling (which was extremely thorough and well-reasoned, IMO) said as much. Based on him not being a flight risk, not having a proven history of violence, prison overcrowding, etc., the judge granted bail. One additional factor to be considered is whether the case against the accused is weak: there, the judge said that it was not, and that Oscar’s story was full of implausible details.

    THAT is the actual take-away from today: even after all of the holes in the lead investigator’s testimony and methods (which the judge strongly criticized him for, but said were not flaws with the state’s CASE), the first magistrate to hear the Oscar’s story laid out thought it sounded ridiculous. That wasn’t enough to outweigh all of the other factors that went in favor of granting him bail, but it shows that the decision on bail had nothing to do with thinking the case against him was weak.

  31. anonymous fan says:

    It scares me to think that popular sport stars can get away with murder no matter what country they’re in.But I am really starting to believe that.

    • Oops says:

      I feel the same, I wonder how many “stars “(sport, cinema, TV..) escaped legal proceedings because of their celebrity, the number must be impressive if we take into account the minor offences, but most worrying offences it is that it also has worked for the murders and other crimes

  32. Mich says:

    I’m not surprised he got bail. I was chatting with a trial lawyer here in SA today and she wasn’t surprised either.

    There is no way he is getting off, however, with anything short of culpable homicide. He will be found guilty of that even if the State completely screws up the case.

    Personally, I suspect he might try to off himself before the trial even begins.

  33. Cazzie says:

    I am wondering at the lack of “regular” photographs of Reeva Steenkamp that seem to be available. All the pictures that I have seen of her are professional shots where she is posed and lit to perfection – she is incredibly beautiful in these photos and that may be why we keep seeing them.

    But, I personally would LOVE to see some regular family pictures of Ms. Steenkamp where she is just a person together with her family on a happy occasion. You know – snapshots of her at graduations, weddings, maybe her niece’s first birthday party?

    If we could see more photos of her with her family, arms around each other and smiling, that might be a nice change of pace from all the “hawt” photos of her that keep getting printed.

    I am not balming Celebitchy here for the photos that they are including of the murder victim – I think that is all that’s out there right now. They can’t print what’s not available. And Reeva was a professional model so there are probably hundreds of good photos of her, and you always want to present a photo of someone that is flattering, particularly someone who was senselessly and brutally murdered.

    Reeva Steenkamp’s family does not seem to be part of the media fray right now, probably because they are deeply in shock. Still, it would be nice if they could release some family snapshots of her to show that Reeva was a person who was loved and cherished. It would be a nice counter-narrative to all the other stuff swirling around this case.

  34. GiGi says:

    I was listening to a member of Reeva’s family, who have been just amazing through the nightmare they must be facing. She said that she prayed that OP’s story was the true version, that it really was some horrible accident, because they couldn’t bear to think it otherwise.

    I shared yesterday about 3 of my family who were murdered. They were tortured over a period of time and brutally killed by 6 people. It is absolutely wrenching to think about. And honestly, if they’d died quickly in a botched home invasion (like OP’s version), it would bring a bit of solace, just knowing they weren’t terrified in their final moments.

    Obvs, this has no bearing whatsoever on the facts/actuality of this case. I’ll be curious to see how it all unfolds.

    Does anyone know if the June 4 date is the proper trial date or will it be like the US and that is just the date they’ll decide the trial date?

    • Lucrezia says:

      I’m not 100% sure, but I suspect that June 4 is just his next appearance, not the start of the trial.

      A few days ago, various sources were saying that SA is notoriously slow, but with OP being a celeb it might only be 6 months until the trial. So 3.5 months seems far too rapid.

  35. sunnyinseattle says:

    Does anyone know if they froze his bank accounts? Because there are many ways someone can disappear with enough money….

  36. olli says:

    Perhaps you should read some of our local newspaper articles, dailymaverick.co.za and independent.co.za ,and mg.co.za. The reporters have done excellent articles of allegations against Oscar. This will all come out in his trial. Look at Cassidy Taylor assault charge againt Oscar. She still hasn’t withdraw it and its about 3 yrs now. She’s a friend of my son,so Botha did blunders but he’s not the State. Like one reporter stated “Oscar’s past is come to haunt him” Do try to read the articles I’ve metioned. I believe that if the proper procedures were taken with allegation against Oscar for assault, the murder of Reeva could have been avoided.proverb: a man of great wrath shall suffer the penalty, for if you deliver him from the consequences,yet you must do it again

  37. TG says:

    I am glad he got bail. I believe his story, at least as of now. I haven’t seen any convincing evidence against him. I have been really impressed with all the interviews I have seen of both Oscars and Reeva’s family and friends. They all seem intelligent and fair minded. Even Oscar reached out to the family early on and you don’t see that happening in the US in similar circumstances.

  38. AfroLondongirl says:

    I am extremely disappointed in the judge’s decision. However I am not surprised. He is a celebrity. It’s one rule for them and another rule for the rest of us. People have forgotten all about the victim now It’s all about poor Oscar. If he was Oscar your bank manager would he be out on bail on a murder one charge? I don’t think so nor Would he be getting this out pouring of sympathy either. Is it going to be another OJ?

  39. Mich says:

    The judge made the conditions of bail much stricter than what the defense and prosecution had negotiated (i.e. R250k in guarantees, no foreign travel, no visiting the crime scene). The actual terms include:

    R100,000 in cash and another R900,000 in guarantees that he will return for trial.

    Turning in his guns.

    Constant supervision – he will not be able to travel outside Pretoria without prior permission.

    No alcohol or drugs. He is subject to testing day or night.

    Daily in-person check ins with probation officials.

    http://mg.co.za/article/2013-02-22-oscar-pistorius-bail

  40. Linda says:

    I have to join in the outrage on this one. How can this be? The war on women rages on!

    Will he even get a sentence? This is beyond belief!

  41. skuddles says:

    This story is so upsetting. Not only is this POS likely going to get away with terrorizing and murdering a woman, he now has other women lining up to support his “innocence”. OJ, meet your new BFF.

  42. Anonymous_survivor says:

    Whether the judge followed the law correctly granting his bail or not- I pray the actual case won’t be bungled by authorities and detectives. I don’t have enough information but the fact that there are prior women reporting against him seems reason enough to not grant the bail.

  43. emma says:

    Of course, I don’t know the whole story, but he had to have done this on purpose. He is guilty.

  44. Lexi says:

    4 bullets is no “accident”.

  45. shewolf says:

    You can’t be serious. Two problems.

    South Africa has their own laws and legal system. That doesnt make it any less real than wherever you are from.

    Asinine and backwards that he was arrested before the investigation was complete?! Where are you getting your facts from? Law and Order?

    • bluhare says:

      Gemini: I cannot believe that if a person was found with a dying person in their arms, and said “I shot my baba” that the police would not arrest him on the spot. Not send him home until they did their investigation. The police have x number of hours to file charges. That’s what would have happened. He’d have been held pending filing charges.

    • Lucrezia says:

      @ Gemini08:

      In S.Africa, OP is currently free (on bail), while they investigate further.

      If this were the US, OP would be currently free (but certainly under police surveillance) while they investigate further.

      I agree it struck me as strange to have the arrest happen so quickly, but the practical outcome is pretty much the same, so I don’t really see the complaint.

      The only problem here is people from different countries reading more into the news coming out of the bail-hearing than is actually warranted under the S.A. system. You have to weigh up what you hear with a bit of common sense: we’re only hearing the prosecution’s initial theories/speculation, not their absolute final case. (In most other countries, what you’d be hearing at a bail trial would pretty much be the final case.)

      I actually prefer the concepts underlying the S.A system. Did you read Radar’s post upthread, which explains that S.A. leans towards giving bail because detention-without-trial was a major problem during apartheid? Doing it this way makes sense to me: you think someone might be guilty of something? Then take them to a judge straight away.@ Gemini08:

      In S.Africa, OP is currently free (on bail), while they investigate further.

      If this were the US, OP would be currently free (but certainly under police surveillance) while they investigate further.

      I agree it struck me as strange to have the arrest happen so quickly, but the practical outcome is pretty much the same, so I don’t really see the complaint.

      The only problem here is people from different countries reading more into the news coming out of the bail-hearing than is actually warranted under the S.A. system. You have to weigh up what you hear with a bit of common sense: we’re only hearing the prosecution’s initial theories/speculation, not their absolute final case. (In most other countries, what you’d be hearing at a bail trial would pretty much be the final case.)

      I actually prefer the concepts underlying the S.A system. Did you read Radar’s post upthread, which explains that S.A. leans towards giving bail because detention-without-trial was a major problem during apartheid? Doing it this way makes sense to me: you think someone might be guilty of something? Then take them to a judge straight away.

    • Lucrezia says:

      I have no idea how I managed to double-up that post. I can’t edit it now, so apologies!

    • shewolf says:

      Gemini clearly they had enough fact and information to arrest him and charge him. They now have to build a case against him in order to convict him which is why the investigation is still going on. Investigations can go on for years and years and years until it is felt that no further evidence can be gathered or until someone is convicted and justice is served. I have no idea where you are getting your information or your understanding of the legal system.

  46. mainstream says:

    Things are starting to fall into place for Oscar. I’m not as confident of a conviction as I was at first when it seemed to be an open and shut case. I have grave fears that the prosecution are gonna stuff this up and Oscar is gonna walk on a technicality and kill again.

  47. anonymous fan says:

    Actually Gemino08 he wasn’t arrested at the scene he was taken into custody for questioning,which is why he wasn’t in handcuffs that day.He wasn’t officially charged until later that day for murder.It was the the State that charged him with first degree murder,not the police.Which they absolutely would not have done if the crime scene had cooberated his “burglar using the toilet” story.

    • KC says:

      Actually, the state might have chosen to charge him with premeditated murder even if they didn’t a good reason to believe that it was premeditated. CNN’s South African correspondents explained that if they charged him with premeditated murder then he would have to give an affidavit to get bail. The Prosecution is allowed to downgrade the charges at any time, so by charging him with premeditated murder they force him to lock into his defense which makes it easier for them to make a case against him. There really isn’t a reason for the Prosecution NOT to charge him with premeditated murder, no matter what the evidence said.

  48. Apple says:

    Ladies
    It’s time for a worldwide feminist movement.
    We are all pained and disgusted by the treatment of women all over the world, particularly Reeva and the multitude of other women that have been brutally murdered recently (17 year old girl in SA was raped and disemboweled and same happened to an Indian woman. Plus there are millions more that we don’t hear about). It’s up to us to do something about it because men certainly aren’t. We need to work together to put a stop to all this.
    People get so angry about racism (at least where I’m from) and its slowly being stamped out, but what is being done about women’s disadvantage? Nothing. Even in well developed countries we still get paid less, face injustices etc. it’s time to make a change.

    Anyone have idea of best way to start? I want to carry on Reeva’s ambition to stand up for women’s rights. Enough is enough.

  49. K.T. says:

    Thanks for putting a picture of Reeva, the actal victim!
    Thought he was going to get bail, the judge was fair but obviously lending hs sympathy towards the poor little physically challenged misunderstood ‘hero’. Prosecution is trying hard but not up to defense team yet, the police were shown badly by Botha, or whoever left him in charge.
    Accident my arse!

    I don’t like to bring up that other famous case of sports star, but pretty much it seems tht the system internationally is so against victims, women, the poor or unable to be heard that hardly people who kill they loved ones just get away with it.

    And add in rich, athletic and famous…poor Reeva and her family. Also the rest of females just seemingly cant get a fair trial, unlike this deluded violent idiot. He seems like he won’t get a serious conviction let alone much censure.

    @annie
    Practiced? There do seem like a few trolly or PR type of posts. I hate to be suspicious but spin is spin, hes hired the best. If not actual plants there are going to be a few classic spin script plants I’ll bet!

    Dang, ths is a pile of sad. Also cheering is not on. They realise he still killed her right, ‘accidentedly’?!

  50. Flim says:

    In the US, this would still be murder even if the person in the bathroom was an intruder. There was no imminent threat to his life, nor a felony in process. So either way, he committed murder.

  51. Carolyn says:

    If someone was shooting at someone they thought was a burglar, wouldn’t they stop shooting after the first shot at hearing their partner’s scream or voice? His version of events is so dodgy.

    I hope with all my heart that justice prevails. Domestic violence & homicide against women is never OK. Even if you’re a paralympic “hero”.

  52. Sonishka says:

    I cant believe what i just read.

    Pistorius’s affidavit reads:”I fail to understand how I could be charged with murder, let alone premeditated murder, as I had no intention to kill my girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp (“Reeva”).”

    http://www.news.com.au/world/read-oscar-pistoriuss-full-account-of-what-happened-the-night-reeva-steenkamp-was-shot-dead/story-fndir2ev-1226581625792

    What about the fact he freaking went there to KILL THE “INTRUDER”. IT IS STILL KILLING: HE GOT UP, HE GRABBED THE GUN, DIDNT CHECK WHERE SHE IS AND STARTED SHOOTING AT THE TOILET DOOR.

    When you look at the floor map of his bedroom and bathroom, this is just beyond riddiculous!!!!!! to think or claim he thought there is a intruder in there. He is a lunatic PSYCHO!!!!
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-21516664

  53. Jayna says:

    He will get off or come to a plea agreement for manslaughter.

  54. skuddles says:

    Imagine how paranoid dude is now that he’s out on bail – no guns and afraid someone is going to come after him for murdering Reeva. He would have been smart to stay in jail.

  55. This can be conducted as an experiment for the benefit of obtuse people like judge Nair and all the spin doctors trolling around. We will lock them up with their friend Oscar in a 1.4 by 1.4 toilet and start shooting at them to see what happens. If a living being human or animal is assaulted in any way that is causing them harm ,we know by common observation that they are going to react. Screaming for example to attract attention, for help, from fear, from shear pain. Oscar wants us to believe that Reeva sat there being shot at without emitting a sound. In fact the automatic human reaction would be to scream and in a heart wrenching way. So loud that the neighbors will hear you, as they did. To win this the defense will have to show that Oscar apart from legless and I may add spineless is also deaf or went deaf that night which by his own account is not the case..

  56. blonde on the dock says:

    He obviously showed poor judgement but to be fair I’m going to wait to hear all of the evidence before I form an opinion. I think the forensics will show whether he was wearing his legs when he shot through the door. That’s key to whether he’s telling the truth or not.

  57. Paloma says:

    Warning to all women. Don’t go near this man if the justice system finds him not guilty.

  58. Charlie Brown says:

    Psychopaths are never accountable. What a waste of life. Where’s the common sense. If I hear a noise I don’t shoot four times then ask questions afterwards. The man’s a psycho maniac and should be locked up for the rest of his life. Even her family don’t really know him. They are too consumed with grief to think straight. His mother gave birth to monsters.

  59. Paddy says:

    And now the press are reporting that her head was caved in by a cricket bat! Don’t tell me, he thought she was the burglar and bashed her head in!!! This guys unreal .

  60. ViloDeMenus says:

    Well when you think of it, he had to shoot through the door as he couldn’t kick it down to get to her and throttle her to death. My guess is she wanted to break up and he wasn’t having it and killed her.

    I feel so sorry for the victim, she was beautiful and smart, she’d accomplished so much and when she wanted to leave him it cost her her wonderful life. It sounds like the prosecution was almost forced to put on their case, and since it’s not even close to done investigation wise, they ended up with the short end of the stick. Sadly I only think he’s a danger to women when they want to leave him.

  61. gsimione says:

    He was only granted bail because of who he is. He got away with murder. It is a shame he is getting away with this because he is famous