Pistorius to testify today or tomorrow

2014-04-07 00:00

THE world is holding its breath to see whether Oscar Pistorius takes the stand when his murder trial resumes today. If it doesn’t happen today, he is expected to begin testifying tomorrow.

Bloemfontein psychologist Jan Viljoen will be the first defence witness, City Press reported.

Then Pistorius is expected to tell the court, and a global television audience, in his own words what happened in the early hours of February 14, 2013, when he shot Reeva Steenkamp dead.

When advocate Gerrie Nel closed the defence case on February 27, everyone expected Pistorius to take the stand the next day but were disappointed when the case was postponed because of the illness of one of Judge Thokozile Masipa’s two assessors.

It is not known how many witnesses advocate Barry Roux will call in the defence case, but he indicated during cross-examination of prosecution witnesses that he would call the following experts:

• A sound expert who will testify that Pistorius screams like a woman when he is stressed. This is to explain why four state witnesses said they heard a woman screaming.

• A ballistic expert who will say it is impossible to determine in which order the shots hit Steenkamp. This is to counter the state’s ballistic expert who testified that she was hit in the hip, then the arm and finally the head. If this was the case, she would have screamed.

• A pathologist to counter the state pathologist’s testimony that Steenkamp apparently ate two hours before her death. This conflicts with Pistorius’s version that the couple went to bed at about 10 pm.

• According to City Press, Roux will also call a neighbour who will say he heard Pistorius screaming, not a woman.

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