Pistorius trial: 21 questions to be answered

2014-02-24 12:26
Oscar Pistorius and Reeva Steenkamp pictured at the 2012 Feather Awards.

Oscar Pistorius and Reeva Steenkamp pictured at the 2012 Feather Awards. (Lucky Nxumalo, AFP)

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Marida Fitzpatrick, Beeld

Pretoria - Oscar Pistorius's murder trial starts in the North Gauteng High Court on Monday 3 March 2014. He stands accused of the murder of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, in his Pretoria home on Valentine's Day last year.

Here are the 21 questions that need to be answered during the trial.

1. Why did Steenkamp decide that evening not to go out with her friends?

2. What did Steenkamp give Pistorius for Valentine’s Day?

3. What were the death threats that, according to Pistorius's statement, he received?

4. What violence and break-ins had he been a victim of and why did he not, according to the State, report these incidents?

5. Why did Pistorius not realise Steenkamp was not next to him in bed? He slept next to her and walked past the bed again to get his handgun.

6. Had it never happened before that he woke in the middle of the night with Steenkamp or one of his former girlfriends using the bathroom?

7. If he believed that he and Steenkamp were in grave danger with at least one robber in the toilet, why did he not tell her to flee or go downstairs before he confronted the danger?

8. If Pistorius was as scared of intruders as he said in his statement, why did he confront them instead of fleeing?

9. After he had fired the shots and saw Steenkamp was not in the bed, he bashed open the door with a cricket bat. Why did he suddenly know Steenkamp was behind the door, while a minute earlier he was convinced it was at least one robber? Why did he not look to see if she was somewhere else in the house before he broke down the door, behind which there could still have been robbers, according to his version of the events?

10. Why did he at no stage call the police or the estate’s security services?

11. The estate’s security guards called him after the shooting to ask if all was in order. Why did he tell them, according to the State, that everything was “fine”?

12. What is Pistorius's relationship with Johan Stander, the man he called first?

13. Why did Pistorius take the time to go downstairs and open the front door while Steenkamp was dying upstairs?

14. If he was convinced that there were intruders behind the toilet door, why did he drop his handgun? The State says it was found on the floor near the shower.

15. Why did Steenkamp take her cellphone to the bathroom? Why was the cellphone outside the toilet and she inside?

16. Why was the toilet door locked?

17. Why did Steenkamp, according to the State, stand fully clad behind the locked bathroom door?

18. If Pistorius’s version is true, why did Steenkamp not answer when he yelled at her to call the police? Why did she not scream after the first shot?

19. The State referred in court papers to Pistorius's internet activities on the night of 13 February and said these conflicted with the idea of a couple who spent the night together. What did Pistorius do on the internet? The Sunday Times reported he visited several pornographic websites on his phone while Steenkamp was with him.

20. If Pistorius's version is true, what were the screaming and sounds of fighting that the neighbours reported hearing?

21. What had happened in Pistorius and Samantha Taylor’s relationship? They went out for a year and six months, and Taylor had plans to tell Rapport what Pistorius had subjected her to, but she then decided against this. What will she testify about Pistorius?

Read more on:    reeva steenkamp  |  oscar pistorius  |  pistorius trial

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