Oscar Pistorius Trial: Cross-Examiniation EndsBy: Toni Matthews-El - April 15, 2014
After five grueling days, the cross-examination of suspect Oscar Pistorius came to an end on Tuesday.
Gerrie Nel, the chief prosecutor in the high profile case, said that he had no further questions for the 27-year-old former Olympian.
Nel seems satisfied with his questioning and what he managed to convey to the court and judge.
Pistorius was not obligated to take the stand, but he did so. It is possible that he hoped that a testimony about his version of events would somehow act to counter what had been presented by the prosecution during the first half of the trial.
Pistorius had confessed to the fatal shooting of Steenkamp on February 13th, 2013. According to the athlete the entire thing had been a terrible accident rather than premeditated murder.
Pistorius said that he thought there was an intruder in bathroom of their home and that his life was in danger. He said that he was terrified because he was without his prosthetic legs and unable to physically protect himself.
It was fear that made him fire at a stranger, not anger that made him fire at his girlfriend.
Pistorius said tearfully that he fired four times through the bathroom door. A short while later he realized it had been Steenkamp.
Prosecutors painted a markedly different picture of that day’s tragic events through physical evidence and witness testimony. They argued that the athelete intentionally murdered Steenkamp after a vicious argument.
Neighbors claimed that on the morning of the murder, a woman’s screams were heard. The screaming was soon silenced by gunfire.
Eye witness testimonies and expert testimonies about the shooting and evidence were all used to draw one simple conclusion: Oscar Pistorius is a liar who killed his 29-year-old girlfriend intentionally.
Nel would go at Pistorius during five days of cross-examination in an effort to drive this point home. He brought up the inconsistencies in Pistorius’s testimony.
He also accused Pistorius of a selfish and insincere emotional display meant to foster sympathy for himself at the expense of the victim’s surviving family.
Following his intense session on the stand, Pistorius’s defense team must work hard to explain why his testimony deviated from his original statements and flowed more closely with the prosecution’s evidence.
Pistorius faces 25 years if Judge Thokozile Masipa determines that his actions were an act of premeditated murder.
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