South Africans exposed to crime - Oscar

2014-04-07 20:27
(Bongiwe Mchunu, Pool)

(Bongiwe Mchunu, Pool)

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Pretoria - All people living in South Africa have been exposed to crime, including himself, murder accused Oscar Pistorius told the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Monday.

"Everyone in South Africa at some point has been exposed to crime," the Paralympian told the court on day 17 of his murder trial.

"My father has been hijacked twice. My brother was in an attempted hijacking."

While growing up, there was a housebreaking at his father's house.

Pistorius recalled how the family returned from a holiday to find the Johannesburg home ransacked.

Pistorius said that while living with his mother the house was broken into a few times.

He recalled he went to the Paralympic World Cup in Manchester, London. When he returned to South Africa he found his house had been broken into.

His TV was stolen and his car's roof was cut.

"One night, there was somebody in my garden," he said.

"I've been followed home late at night. I've been shot at on the highway."

Pistorius recalled a night when a car drove up behind him. He said he slowed down so the man could pass.

"I saw a muzzle flash," the athlete said.

He said he went to a public place and sat there for a while, then called his friend to fetch him and left his car there.

The court also heard how Pistorius and former girlfriend, State witness Samantha Taylor, were followed home one night.

He said there was another occasion when a car followed him for a few days at a time.

The court also heard how Pistorius assisted people who were victims of crime.

He recalled in January 2012 a Toyota Corolla was pushed off the road by a minibus taxi.

Three men were smashing the windscreen of the car and beating the man and car with rocks.

Helping a man in need

Pistorius said he was parked at a robot and jumped the light and withdrew his firearm. The men jumped into the taxi and drove away.

"The guy was bleeding profusely... He was bleeding all over and two of the wheels of the car had burst," Pistorius said.

"Every time he tried to stand up, he fell over."

An emotional Pistorius told the court how he assisted the man to sit down and called paramedics and another man started helping him.

"The situation seemed to be contained so I got into my car and left."

Pistorius said that in December 2012 he was assaulted by a man while attending a function.

"I ended up receiving stitches at the back of my head."

He reported the incident to the Hawks detective unit, which scheduled a meeting and brought in the concerned parties.

"I had calls from several journalists which I decided not to take," he said.

Pistorius said he did not speak to the media about the assault.

The athlete is charged with murdering his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, who was shot through the locked toilet door of his Pretoria home on February 14 last year.

He said he had mistaken her for an intruder.

He also faces two charges of contravening the Firearms Control Act, to which he has denied guilt.

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

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