Is tough questioning making Oscar Pistorius emotional?

2014-04-14 17:08

Oscar Pistorius has been accused of using his emotional state to “escape” difficult questions.

The court was today forced to take an early tea break as well as an early lunch adjournment because Pistorius broke down under a relentless cross-examination by state prosecutor Gerrie Nel.

“Why are you getting emotional? Is it about what happened or is it about the questions and your frustrations in answering them?” said Nel.

“Mr Pistorius, you’re not using your emotional state as an escape, are you?”

“No, my lady,” replied the athlete.

Pistorius was being quizzed about why he had fired at the toilet door, and then taken the loaded and cocked gun with him back to his bedroom.

His version holds that he then opened his balcony doors to scream for help, put his prosthetic legs on and then went back to the bathroom to try to kick the toilet door down.

Nel wanted to know how it was possible that Pistorius did all of this before dropping the firearm on the bathroom floor.

Pistorius replied: “If I was so calculated in my manner, surely I would’ve put the gun on safe or I would’ve put it up somewhere? No, I didn’t. I left it on the bathroom floor where I was trying to save Reeva’s life. I wasn’t thinking about this firearm.”

But Nel was incredulous at this response, saying it was only difficult to explain in Pistorius’ version.

“On the state’s version, where you fired at Reeva, killed her, you put down the gun and then tried to get her out, that’s not that difficult [to explain].”

Pistorius also broke down before tea, when Nel asked him what he screamed at the supposed intruders: “I said: ‘Get the f*** out of my house, get the f*** out!’”, squealed a near hysterical Pistorius.

He also broke down shortly before lunch, while testifying about whether it was just a matter of luck that he had shot at the door and hit Reeva.

“Why would that be lucky, she lost her life!” Pistorius said.

Barry Roux, Pistorius’ lawyer, has objected to the athlete being repeatedly asked the same questions about parts of the night that made him emotional.

But Judge Thokozile Masipa said she would intervene if this was the case.

The cross-examination will continue tomorrow.

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