Witness: Oscar sought to shift blame

2014-03-05 14:00
Oscar Pistorius is seen in the North Gauteng High Court. (Photo24)

Oscar Pistorius is seen in the North Gauteng High Court. (Photo24)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Pretoria - Paralympian Oscar Pistorius asked a friend to take the blame for a gunshot he allegedly fired in a Johannesburg restaurant, the North Gauteng High Court heard on Wednesday.

"Please Darren, just say it was you, I don't want any tension around me," State witness Kevin Lerena recalled Pistorius as saying at the time.

Lerena, questioned by prosecutor Gerrie Nel, was referring to Darren Fresco, who was with Pistorius and himself at Tashas restaurant in Melrose Arch, in January 2013.

"I don't know for what reason, but a gun was passed under the table," Lerena said.

Fresco passed the gun to Pistorius, saying "I'm one up", said Lerena.

Questioned by Nel on what this phrase meant, Lerena said that there was one bullet in the chamber.

"A shot went off in the restaurant, then there was just complete silence.

"I looked down and where my foot was there was a hole in the floor. I wasn't hurt or injured but I had blood on my toe," said Lerena.

"I was in shock."

He said Pistorius then apologised and asked if everybody was okay.

Court adjourned for lunch early and will resume at 14:00.

International media

It is unclear how the media found out about incident. Lerena said he had never told anyone about the incident.

"I never spoke about it again. On the 16th [February 2013] I had over 100 phone calls from the media," Lerena told the court.

This was just two days after Pistorius shot and killed Reeva Steenkamp.

Dressed in a black suit, a white shirt and red tie, Lerena said international media was reporting that Pistorius had in the previous month shot him in the leg.

He was then contacted by the police who wanted to confirm the reports.

Lerena said he told the police the reports were false as he was not injured during the incident.

Pistorius took notes as Lerena spoke of the incident. The State was expected to start cross-examining Lerena later in the afternoon.

The buff, dark-haired boxer was the fourth witness to testify as the trial moved into its third day.

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

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.


24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Competition regulation for a growing and inclusive economy

ADVERTORIAL: The Competition Commission of South Africa is conducting advocacy work in the South African automotive aftermarket industry and has gazetted a Draft Code of Conduct for public comment.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.