At least he got some jail time, says Reeva’s mother

2014-10-22 00:00

THAT Oscar Pistorius will spend at least 10 months in prison is “at least something” and “a measure of comfort”, said the Steenkamp family and the National Prosecuton Authority (NPA) yesterday.

Judge Thokozile Masipa sentenced Pistorius in terms of a specific article in the Criminal Procedure Act that makes provison for his five-year sentence to be converted to correctional supervision after 10 months.

“Even if it is short, it means he will pay,” June Steenkamp, Reeva’s mother, said after the sentencing.

“It is okay.”

She squeezed the shoulder of her legal representative, advocate Dup de Bruyn, and thanked him.

NPA spokesperson Nathi Mncube said the authority was glad the long trial is at an end. “It is a comfort that the accused will spent at least a portion of his sentence in prison. We are glad about that.”

The state has not yet decided if it will appeal, but there is “an apetite to appeal” Mncube said. He stressed the state has 14 days to do so. The defence reportedly does not plan to appeal.

Barry Steenkamp, Reeva’s father, told reporters he had no comments, but he is thankful it is over. “We are so glad. We can no go on, one day at a time.”

De Bruyn said the sentencing was well thought through.

Oscar’s uncle Arnold Pistorius told reporters the Pistorius family accepted the sentence, but also lashed out at the state for changing their tactics when their murder charge did not stick. “In the process they decided to commit as much collateral damage as possible.”

He said one of the aspects of the trial that angered him the most was how the truth became “totally irrelevant” in the state’s attempts to succeed in its charge of premeditated murder”.

Yesterday was one of the least emotional days of the entire trial.

The Steenkamp couple were unemotional, as were Oscar and his younger sister, Aimée, who had cried several times during the trial. All were expressionless when Masipa sentenced Oscar to five years in prison. Unlike their habit to date, the Pistorius family quickly left the court yesterday, with none of the usual greetings and quick prayers.

Arnold Pistorius and other family members only greeted Oscar quickly when the court orderly led him to the cells under the court. Carl Pistorius, his brother who had been in a vehicle crash, was on crutches as he followed his brother on his prosthetics.

Oscar was loaded from the cells into a police vehicle and taken to the Kgosi Mampuru II prison in Pretoria.

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