Oscar must explain actions

2014-02-24 00:00

OSCAR Pistorius will likely have to testify in his murder trial.

“I don’t think he has another choice,” said Marius du Toit, criminal procedure attorney with 14 years’ experience.

“If I was his attorney and there is evidence in which people claim there was a fight and they had heard shouting before the shots, I would have my client testify for sure.”

It is especially important for Pistorius to testify as he admitted to shooting his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, explained Du Toit.

“The moment you admit you caused someone’s death, you must show the court your actions were not illegal. You must explain to the court. This is one of those tough cases in which only the accused can say what happened that night. If he admits the action, he has no other choice than to get into the witness box.”

Du Toit said the state already has a prima facie case and if the defence does not offer any evidence, it would become a proven case.

He said the defence will offer forensic and ballistic evidence, which could help, but when it comes to what he was thinking and what he did, Pistorius will have to testify under oath.

But Pistorius’s legal team will probably decide on this only once the state has closed its case, predicted Du Toit.

“I cannot see how he cannot testify, but that decision will only be taken when the state’s evidence has been presented,” he said.

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