South Africans think Oscar Pistorius is guilty of murder – survey

2014-09-17 15:14

Two in three South Africans think Paralympian Oscar Pistorius intentionally killed Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day last year.

“The majority of South Africans interviewed for this survey disagreed with Judge Thokozile Masipa’s verdict of culpable homicide in the Pistorius case, indicating widespread dissatisfaction with the verdict,” said Pondering Panda spokesperson Shirley Eadie.

Pondering Panda, a consumer insights company, surveyed close to 1 500 people across the country after Masipa found Pistorius not guilty of murder on Friday.

The survey found that 63% of respondents believed he intended to kill Steenkamp. About 30% agreed with Masipa’s verdict and 7% were unsure.

The data also reveals that reactions to the verdict differed based on age.

“We found that across race and gender lines the majority of people unanimously agreed that Oscar intended to kill his girlfriend. The only divide was in the age,” said Eadie.

About 51% of people between the ages 18 to 24 said Pistorius intended to kill Steenkamp. This went up to 63% of people between 25 and 34, and 81% of respondents in the 35 to 49 age category.

“The most interesting information from the data to us was the wide dissatisfaction by the respondents to the verdict,” added Eadie.

The culpable homicide charge, of which Masipa found Pistorius guilty, carries a prison sentence of a maximum of 15 years.

When survey participants were asked what sentence they would give Pistorius, 22% said they would give him the maximum sentence.

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