Pistorius family: Mortimer seeking attention

2014-07-16 05:22
Oscar Pistorius looks on during his murder trial at the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria. (Daniel Born, AFP)

Oscar Pistorius looks on during his murder trial at the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria. (Daniel Born, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

kalahari.com

Johannesburg - The man who claimed to have been involved in an altercation with murder-accused Oscar Pistorius was seeking attention, Pistorius's family said on Tuesday.

"Mr [Jared] Mortimer, who has been unknown to Oscar and our family until he approached the press with his story of the so-called 'altercation' in which he has cast himself as the victim, is a man peddling untruths designed for maximum attention and maximum damage," the Paralympic athlete's uncle, Leo Pistorius, said in a statement issued on behalf of the family.

Pistorius and Mortimer had a confrontation on Saturday at the upmarket VIP Room club situated at the Michelangelo Towers in Sandton, Johannesburg.

Through his spokesperson, Pistorius on Monday said Mortimer "aggressively interrogated him" on matters relating to his murder trial.

Pistorius is charged with murdering his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp after he shot her through a locked toilet door at his Pretoria home on Valentine's Day last year. He alleges he mistook her for an intruder.

Mortimer reportedly told The Star newspaper that Pistorius insulted President Jacob Zuma's family and his own friends, resulting in the altercation.

"I took that personally because I am very good friends with a member of the Zuma family," he was quoted as saying.

He claimed Pistorius was intoxicated and started to poke him in the chest while they were talking. He then pushed Pistorius away from him and the paralympian fell over a chair. The bouncers reportedly intervened and asked Pistorius to leave.

Pistorius's family say, however, that Mortimer's version is untrue.

"My investigations indicate that Mortimer was the aggressor and eyewitnesses confirm this," said Leo Pistorius.

He also denied that Pistorius had offended the president's family.

"We wish to categorically state that there is absolutely no truth to this man's assertions that Oscar, for instance, insulted the president of South Africa or boasted about our family's so-called influence," he said.

"Oscar was at school with one of President Zuma's sons and liked him a lot. Oscar also has great appreciation of President's Zuma's extraordinary support of the paralympians."

The family also rubbished allegations that Pistorius claimed they owned the SA National Defence Force.

The Pistorius's said the Paralympic athlete's move to venture into a public space while the trial was under way was unwise, but they had witnessed his "escalating sense of loneliness and alienation".

"This, we believe, is underlying some of his self-harming behaviour," Leo Pistorius said, adding that the family was finding ways of dealing with his isolation.

The defence team in Pistorius's murder trial closed its case in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria last week. Final arguments are expected to be heard on 7 August.

- SAPA
Read more on:    reeva steenkamp  |  oscar pistorius  |  jacob zuma
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
134 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/Movies
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.