Gerrie Nel: Reeva doesn’t have a life any more because of you ... so tell the truth

2014-04-09 17:28

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State prosecutor Gerrie Nel has warned Oscar Pistorius to “give us the truth and not think of the implications for [himself]”.

This was shortly after Pistorius had responded to a question from Nel by saying: “My lady, my life is on the line ... of course I think of every single word I say when I’m sitting here.”

Nel hit back immediately: “But Reeva doesn’t have a life any more because of what you’ve done, she’s not alive any more.

“So please listen to the questions and give us the truth and [don’t] think of the implications for you.”

Nel was interrogating Pistorius on whether he had discharged his firearm accidentally, something that Pistorius had included in his plea explanation, as Nel pointed out.

Pistorius testified that “the discharge [of the firearm] was accidental, I believed the noise I heard inside the toilet was somebody coming out to attack me or to take my life.”

But Nel was persistent, telling Pistorius that he “wasn’t going away”.

“Did your gun go off accidentally, yes or no?” said Nel.

Pistorius replied: “When I fired my firearm I believed that someone was coming out of the toilet to attack me. I don’t know how to put it in a different way ... I don’t know what the implications [are] of what Mr Nel [is] asking me about if my firearm went off accidentally.

“I don’t know if by me saying I fired my firearm accidentally what that means ... out of fear, I fired four shots. When I realised the scale of what was happening, I stopped firing.”

Pistorius’ voice cracked, becoming thin and reedy as he gave this answer.

It was then that Nel asked Pistorius if what was really bothering him was the implications of his answers for him.

After Nel told him that Reeva had lost her life because of him, Pistorius’ head drooped.

A long silence followed, after which Nel repeated the question.

Pistorius then said: “I didn’t intend to shoot at anyone ... if on that basis, then I agree, then it was an accident, in the way I discharged [the gun].”

Nel then sprung his trap, asking if Pistorius had fired shots purposely into the door?

“No, my lady,” murmured Pistorius.

“Mr Pistorius, I unfortunately will have to show you something,” said Nel.

Nel then read from Pistorius’ bail affidavit: “I felt trapped as my bedroom door was locked and I have limited mobility on my stumps.

“I fired shots at the toilet door and I shouted to Reeva.”

The cross-examination will continue tomorrow.

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