Pistorius trial - day 4; part 1 - as it happened

2014-03-06 08:52

Get the latest updates from day 4 of Oscar Pistorius’s murder trial at the North Gauteng High Court.

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Last Updated at 04:56
Our coverage of the Oscar Pistorius murder trial continues on Thursday when the State is expected to call more witnesses. For more of Wednesday’s proceedings, click here and here.


13:14 A little FYI, For the duration of the Oscar Pistorius trial, get expert analysis and watch exclusive documentaries around-the-clock on oscartrial.com.


12:52 - Lunch break. Court adjourns. Back at 13:50.


12:51 - Photos being shown on the screen - a view from Stipp’s bedroom has direct sight of Oscar’s bathroom windows.


12:49 - JS confirms doors in bedroom going onto balcony were open due to hot weather. 


12:47 - Back on the screaming - JS heard a man "distinctly" shout "help" three times. 


12:47 - Prosecutor confirming witness heard "woman's screams" - that's right. Thought I could hear a man's voice also scream. Pitch was lower, sounded like two different voices, says JS.


12:46 - Stipp thought first bangs were gunshots. He'd been in the military. Had weapons training.


12:43 - Gave police statement the next day. Then again a few months later to Captain Mike van Aardt.


12:41 - Went to work the next day as usual. Wife phoned at 09:00. The lady that was shot, wife said, turns out she was OP's girlfriend and that you were in his house. Police were told to take statement from me. They didn't come that day. I went to security next day, asked for number of investigating officer, said I might be able to help. 


12:40 - Stipp was worried Pistorius might hurt himself with the gun, but he returned downstairs...


12:39 - Didn't know he was in OP's house, says JS. Thought he lived elsewhere.


12:38 - Oscar remained at Steenkamp’s side while they waited for an ambulance, says JS.


12:36 - OP's sister Aimee is crying too. OP is sobbing, says Alex Crawford.


12:35 - In that time OP was crying all the time, praying, said he would dedicate his life to God so she can't die. OP buries head further into his hands while hearing JS's testimony. 


12:34 - JS says he tried to assist her, looked for signs of life. She had no peripheral pulse, she was clenching down on OP's fingers. I opened her right eyelid, the pupil was fixed, dilated. 

To me it was obvious that she was mortally wounded. She wounds in her right thigh and right upper arm. There was blood and hair and brain tissue to the right of her skull.


12:33 - OP looking down, has his head in his hands. 


12:32 - Nel introduces photos that won't be showed on monitor


12:30 - When JS went inside saw woman on the ground. There was a man next to her. The man said he shot her because he thought she was a burglar. 


12:29 - Man talking on cellphone, standing against white BMW at OP's house. He motioned me inside. Lady standing at door. I said I'm a doctor, can I be of assistance. She said yes, I went inside. 


12:29 - Stipp thought he should investigate 'in case it was a family tragedy'.


12:27 - Noticed someone was moving in the bathroom. The lights were on in the bathroom. Got distinct impressions someone was moving from right to left in bathroom, says JS. 


12:25 - Was on the phone when I heard a man's voice shouting three times "help". Security arrived later. Up on balcony, talking to security downstairs. They drove in the direction of shooting. 


12:23 - Heard the woman screaming, tried to find where screams were coming from. Saw it was house opposite, saw all the lights on. Saw bathroom light on. Phoned Silverwood security. No answer. Then phoned police, number was out of order. Got a funny dialling tone. While I was on the phone, I heard more loud bangs. Told wife to get away from window.


12:23 - Photos show bathroom window of accused's house...and another, the window, from Stipp's house, across an open ref 72m away


12:19 - Nel talks Stipp through the aerial pictures of Silverwoods on tv screens around the court. Stipp is looking at a picture of the back of OP's house. Stipp identifying his house in relation to OP's. Its at the back of OP's.


12:17 - Took a few moments, says JS of the entire incident. OP looking down then away as JS gives testimony.  


12:16 - Awakened by three loud bangs, says JS. Wife asked what it was, said he thought it was gunshots. Went balcony tried to ascertain where it was coming from. Then heard woman screaming. When I heard that I knew there were big problems here. Nel asks for time frames. 


12:15 - Stipp (JS) says 13 February 2013 was a normal evening. Went to bed at about 22:30.


12:13 - Stipp is a radiologist in private practice in Pretoria. Confirms he stays in Silverwoods opposite Silverlake. Doesn't personally know OP. 


12:11 - Johnson excused. He must be so relieved. Next State witness is Johan Stipp. Stipp's image may not be shown. (Sorry about that, thought I heard  the surname as Smit). Stipp is a neighbour from Silverwoods Estate.


12:10 - Did you know before you made the notes how many shots were fired, asked Nel. Yes, I did, says Johnson. It was four, he says.


12:09 - Nel: It was put to you your notes were designed to incriminate...bail application judgement was after notes were made


12:06 - Johnson referring to notes, tells of woman and man's screams that he heard and how he phoned security. 


12:06 - Nel reiterates that Johnson and his wife discussed what they'd heard at the time in 2013


12:02 - Johnson referring to notes, says he was convinced the incident was a robbery/ attack. Not domestic violence.


12:00 - Johnson reads from notes, recalls early morning phone call on that fateful morning. 


11:58 - Nel checks 21 points in Johnson's notes that confirm to his statement.


11:57 - Nel: Mr Johnson it was put to you that you and your wife discussed your statements...I refer you to your notes


11:56 - And we're back. Nel now questioning Johnson. Who I'm now calling CJ.


11:50 - Looks like they might re-start soon...


11:22 - A boy is in court and it looked like someone was trying to set up a photo of him standing next to OP until they thought better of it, tweets The Guardian's David Smith. Yeah, it's not exactly in good taste, is it...


11:08 - OP's sister Aimee has approached Reeva's cousin Kim. Kim placed what looked like a consoling arm on her. Aimee tearful as they chat.


10:57 - I think it's a 30 minute break. So they'll be back around 11:30.


10:56 - Did they say when they're coming back? Don't think so. Will check.


10:54 - Roux asks for adjournment. Nel wants one too. Judge asks to see counsel. Court adjourns.


10:53 - Johnson explains about where he lives. "Sound travels extremely far in that area." Says he often hears jackal calls from the veld and it "remind us (Johnson and wife) of the screams they heard that night."


10:51 - Roux says if your version is correct, deceased would have been, when you heard scream, in locked toilet. No way you heard scream. Nel objects.


10:50 - Roux concludes with witness. Nel asks for tea break. Then Roux has another question. 


10:50 - Johnson: I have difficulty accepting Mr Pistorius' speculation.


10:49 - Roux asks why he wasn't able to count the shots. Says the screaming he heard was OP. Johnson says 'convinced' it was a lady.


10:48 - Roux: "What is it that made you unable to be in a position to tell us when you were standing on the balcony about the number of shots?"


10:45 - Johnson says he hope that clarifies. Roux says no. 


10:44 - Johnson reiterates the sequence of events...Roux glances down at colleague and shakes his head.


10:43 - Roux asks why Johnson wants to refer to notes. He says he was to be accurate. 


10:42 - Roux asks if Johnson refers to statement that notes are very accurate. Johnson (after long pause) says he's confident of that. 


10:42 - Comfortable these notes reflect my version, says Johnson. 


10:41 - Johnson asks to refer to notes. Roux asks him if he can't remember. He says he can but he has his notes with him.


10:40 - Johnson: I was out on balcony. Confident my senses were quite sharp.


10:38 -  Johnson says he believes the sound of a cricket bat on door is not 'sharp' like a gunshot. The time it takes to re-swing your bat would be longer than intervals of gunshots, says Johnson.


10:36 - Roux says the noise Johnson heard (which he says is shots) coincides with OP breaking toilet door with bat


10:32 - Roux is moving on to the coinciding calls made by Johnson and Pistorius, allegedly after Pistorius broke down door


10:31 - Johnson says Roux is being "very vague" in his latest line of questioning regarding what he heard that night. Judge asks him to be clearer.


10:30 - Johnson: I feel confident I would be able to distinguish the sound of gunshots from other sounds.


10:29 - Roux: what is your experience with firearms that you mentioned in your evidence? Johnson: I own a 9mm


10:28 - Roux: "The version of four shots by your wife came about after the visit of two police officers." Johnson: I can't speak for my wife.


10:24 - Roux: That note is really not good for your version and your wife's version. Roux: that explains your long explanation, which is not called for..... Johnson: I disagree


10:24 - Roux: so the bottom line is that you gave the notes to Maritz because he said he knew Nel? Yes.


10:22 - Johnson: "I did not make up my mind that Oscar Pistorius was guilty. I felt a moral obligation as a witness to present a neutral version."


10:21 - Johnson just spoke at length about what he did last year. Clearly frustrated with all this. With Barry Roux. 


10:16 - Contacted advocate, told him we want to make a statement, says Johnson. He says they didn't want to take sides. 


10:14 - We didn't want to get involved in this matter. We're private people. We knew it would be a highly public matter. We wanted to find a discreet way of what we had witnessed available, says Johnson.


10:11- I'm looking at notes I take for work. I don't know if I could satisfactorily explain in court what's going on. (Take careful notes, people!) - News24's Sipho Hlongwane tweets. Yeah, I hope my notes never have to be used in a court matter, I'd be so nervous...  


10:10 - Again, Roux is suggesting the witness amended his notes, and therefore his memory of the night, after talking to his wife.


10:08 - Johnson sounds very tired. Frustrated almost. 


10:07 - Roux also points to quotation from Johnson that says: "But my wife recalls about four or five shots."


10:06 - No reference to five to six shots in notes, says Roux. 


10:04 - Johnson says he read through the notes to remind himself...


10:02 - Roux suggests Johnson has studied his 'notes'. Johnson says that's too strong and he was exhausted last night


10:00 - He said that her recollection of what happened in that phone call was "similar" to his recollection. He said he THEN told her about OP


9:59 - Johnson says after he heard OP had shot his girlfriend he rang his wife and asked her again what she remembered, without mentioning OP


9:58 - Roux says testimony that male calls for help were a mockery of female screams for help inconsistent with his notes. Nel comes to Johnson's defence. 


9:57 - Roux to Johnson: Your interpretation today is a designed one... There is a design on your side to incriminate. Johnson: I have no reason to incriminate.


9:53 - Johnson reading from notes now. 


9:51 - Johnson confirms police visited on 6 March 2013. 


9:50 - Roux highlights that notes were made on the same day police visited Johnson at home. Seems to be building up to an attack on police integrity.


9:45 - Johnson's wife made notes says Roux but destroyed them - Johnson says he has no knowledge of this


9:42 - Captain van Aardt, who took Johnson's statement, didn't ask for notes. Johnson told him about them but Van Aardt declined. Notes that Johnson made after Reeva's death. Notes made on 6 March 2013.


9:40 - Roux apologises for reading Johnson's cellphone number out in court. Johnson accepts apology. 


9:40 - Johnson says he's never made a statement before but there was a certain 'methodology' in taking them...hence similarity


9:39 - Barry Roux asks witness Charl Johnson why he said his wife "testified" to her musical ability. Johnson: "I can't explain why I said that."


9:37 - Barry Roux asks Johnson why he knew something his wife said in testimony that she'd counted the shots instinctively because she was musical


9:35 - Proceedings start. Barry Roux cross-examining Charl Johnson, Pistorius's (OP) neighbour. 


9:33 - Charl Johnson's wife, Michelle Burger is seated in the front row with investigators.


9:27 - The state has indicated that - after cross-exam of Johnson - it wants to call another resident and the pathologist who examined Reeva's body, tweets eNCA's Karyn Maughan.


9:11


8:48 - Um, this is kind of related, Eskom has started load shedding. If that's happening in your area well then... you might have difficulty looking at these updates...  


8:48 - It's probably going to be a bit of an emotional day for Pistorius and his family - his mother died 12 years ago today. 

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