When the willow meets the meranti

2014-03-04 13:47
Reeva Steenkamp (File, Sapa)

Reeva Steenkamp (File, Sapa)

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Pretoria - Gunshots heard the night Reeva Steenkamp was killed could have been the sound of a cricket bat striking a door, the North Gauteng High Court heard on Tuesday.

The suggestion was made by Barry Roux, SC, for murder-accused Oscar Pretorius, as he was cross-examining witness Michelle Burger, who said she heard the shots.

Roux asked: "Do you know what it sounds like when an English willow wood [cricket bat] makes hard contact with a meranti door?"

With her house 177m from Pistorius's townhouse, where Steenkamp was killed, Roux asked her if this sound would not resemble gunshots.

"Only an expert can say, but I doubt it. A gunshot is extremely loud," she replied.

Prosecutor Gerrie Nel lost his composure at one point during Roux's questioning.

He got up and addressed Judge Thokozile Masipa, complaining that the witness was being badgered.
Nel mistakenly addressed the judge as "Madam" instead of "My Lady".

His prompt apology evoked laughter from the public gallery, relieving the tension.

The State will try to prove that Pistorius committed premeditated murder when he shot and killed Steenkamp through a toilet door in his Pretoria home on 14 February last year.

In addition, he is charged with premeditated murder, illegal possession of a firearm and ammunition, and recklessly discharging a firearm in public.

Pistorius contends he mistook Steenkamp for an intruder when he shot through the toilet door.
Read more on:    gerrie nel  |  reeva steenkamp  |  oscar pistorius  |  barry roux  |  thokozile masipa  |  pistorius trial

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