Oscar Pistorius sobs as he is found not guilty of murder

2014-09-11 13:52

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Paralympian Oscar Pistorius is not guilty of murder but can still be found guilty of culpable homicide, Judge Thokozile Masipa said in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria today.

“The accused therefore cannot be found guilty of murder dolus eventualis [legal intent] ... that, however, is not the end of the matter as culpable homicide is a competent verdict,” she said, just before adjourning for an early lunch.

Pistorius sat in the dock weeping, shaking and clenching his jaw as Masipa read through her judgment.

“The state has not proved beyond reasonable doubt that the accused is guilty of premeditated murder. There are just not enough facts to support such a finding.”

Masipa said evidence for premeditated murder was “purely circumstantial”.


Pistorius’ sobs could be heard in the court following Masipa’s finding which prompted her to take an early lunch break.

Just after the lunch adjournment, Pistorius heaved a sigh of relief and continued sitting for a few minutes, composing himself, before leaving courtroom GD.

The athlete’s family, among them his uncle Arnold, aunt Lois, sister Aimee and father Henke, were in court.

His brother Carl Pistorius arrived in a wheelchair and both legs in casts. He was injured in a car accident last month.

Pistorius said he thought an intruder was behind the door of the toilet in his Pretoria home when he shot through it. He fired four times, killing his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on February 14 2013. The state argued that the murder was premeditated.

Pistorius pleaded not guilty to the murder charge and three firearm-related charges.

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