Oscar an inspiration - supporter

2014-09-11 08:59
An Oscar Pistorius supporter is seen outside the North Gauteng High Court. (Sapa)

An Oscar Pistorius supporter is seen outside the North Gauteng High Court. (Sapa)

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Pretoria - Paralympian Oscar Pistorius is an inspiration and he must smile, a supporter outside the North Gauteng High Court said on Thursday ahead of the judgment in his murder trial.

"I feel very, very sorry for Oscar. We are here to support him, me and my daughter... I want him to know he must feel free to smile again," Rea du Plessis said.

She was carrying a banner outside the court which read: "Oscar you were, you are, [you] will always be [an] inspiration, a HERO."

She said she supported Pistorius despite him "making a mistake".

Families arrive

The family of Reeva Steenkamp arrived at the court just after 08:00.

Her parents June and Barry Steenkamp were seen arriving, as well as her cousin Kim Martins.

Steenkamp's friends Phuti Khomo and Gina and Kim Myers were also at court.

Steenkamp lawyer Dup de Bruyn, and Pistorius's counsel Barry Roux also arrived at court. Prosecutor Gerrie Nel made an early arrival, wearing a dark suit and white shirt.

The ANC Women's League were also in attendance.

Pistorius's brother, Carl, arrived in a wheelchair after 08:30.

Scores of journalists streamed to the court on Thursday morning and by 08:00, there was already a queue of about 20 people outside the courtroom door.

Security informed media that they would be allowed into the court at 08:45.

Television vans were lined up on Madiba Street, and several camera crews had set up at the court's entrance awaiting the arrival of Pistorius.

Journalists were seen filing stories, while others were milling around, waiting to take their seats in the court room.

Part of the road had been cordoned off, and police were positioned at certain points.

Prosecutor Gerrie Nel made an early arrival at the court, wearing a dark suit and white shirt.

Judge Thokozile Masipa was expected to start handing down judgment in the case at 09:30.

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 Steenkamp on 14 February 2013.

The State says the murder was premeditated.

When the trial started on 3 March, Pistorius pleaded not guilty to the murder charge, and to three firearm-related charges.

Read more on:    reeva steenkamp  |  oscar pistorius  |  pistorius trial

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