I have terrible nightmares - Oscar

2014-04-07 13:42
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Oscar Pistorius in court - day 17

See pictures from day 17 of Oscar Pistorius's trial.

Pretoria - Murder-accused Paralympian Oscar Pistorius told the North Gauteng High Court on Monday that he struggled to get to sleep.

He said he was on medication for depression after he shot dead his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp at his home in Pretoria on Valentine's Day last year.

"I'm scared to sleep," said Pistorius, his voice shaking, holding a white tissue.

"For several reasons. I have terrible nightmares about things that happened that night.

"I smell blood and I wake up to be terrified. I hear a noise, I wake up in just... in a complete state of terror..."

He said he was on the anti-depressant Cipralex and sleeping medication on the advice of family and friends after he lost a significant amount of weight.

"For many weeks I didn't sleep."

Security guard

Pistorius said he sleeps with a security guard at his door since he shot Steenkamp.

"A security guard stands outside my door at night," he said.

"I wake up in a state of complete terror at the slightest noises."

Pistorius said that after the shooting he never wanted to handle a firearm again.

He said one night he could not sleep and climbed into a cupboard. He asked his sister Aimee to stay with him.

Family relationships

Pistorius told the court about his parents' separation when he was 6 and that his mother passed away when he was 15.

He spoke of the close relationship he had with his brother Carl and sister Aimee.

Barry Roux, for Pistorius, asked Pistorius to explain the difficulties he faced after he was born without fibulae in both his legs.

"I have prosthetic legs which has helped me overcome those disabilities," he said.

Pistorius told the court about his amputation and when he got his first prosthetic legs.

Apology

Earlier, he turned to Steenkamp's family and apologised for shooting her.

"I would like to apologise and say there has been no moment since this tragedy happened that I haven't thought about your family."

He said about the night he shot her: "I was simply trying to protect Reeva.

Pistorius has been charged with the murder of Steenkamp and contraventions of the Firearms Control Act.

He said he thought there was an intruder in his house when he shot and killed Steenkamp.

He allegedly fired a shot from a Glock pistol under a table at a Johannesburg restaurant in January 2013.

On 30 September 2012 he allegedly shot through the open sunroof of a car with his 9mm pistol while driving with friends in Modderfontein.

He pleaded not guilty to all charges.


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