Oscar Pistorius refused to look at a photo of his dead girlfriend’s bloody head wounds while giving evidence at his murder trial as the prosecutor urged him to “take responsibility” for killing her.
“It’s time that you look at it,” said chief prosecutor Gerrie Nel, cross-examining the double-amputee athlete charged with premeditated murder for shooting Reeva Steenkamp three times through a toilet door at his home.
“I remember,” Pistorius said of Ms Steenkamp’s bloodied head, becoming distraught and then crying as he turned away from the gruesome image that was displayed next to him in a packed courtroom in Pretoria, South Africa.
“I will not look at a picture where I’m tormented by what I saw and felt that night,” Pistorius said. “As I picked Reeva up, my fingers touched her head. I remember. I don’t have to look at a picture, I was there.”
Pistorius, 27, says he shot Ms Steenkamp in the pre- dawn hours on Valentine’s Day in the head, arm and hip, by mistake, thinking she was an intruder. Prosecutors charge that he killed the 29-year-old intentionally.
Mr Nel also showed a video of the athlete firing a gun at a watermelon at a shooting range. On the video, Pistorius can be heard saying the melon was “softer than brains” after it explodes when the bullet hits it, and calling the gun he was using a “zombie stopper”.
Defence lawyer Barry Roux objected to the video being shown, saying it was inadmissible evidence and amounted to an “ambush”.
Mr Nel also poked holes in Pistorius’s version of the events. The athlete said that his claim that he went out on to a balcony at his home before the shooting was incorrect. He said he went to the edge of it but not outside. The discrepancy could be significant because Pistorius says he heard a noise in the bathroom that alerted him to a possible intruder, which would have been harder if he was out on the balcony.
© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved