Oscar Pistorius Trial Nearing Conclusion: What Happens Next?By: Toni Matthews-El - July 7, 2014
The Oscar Pistorius murder trial has been packed with drama and shocking revelations from the very beginning.
With the final witness called to testify for the defense, it’s expected that the trial is not far away from its highly anticipated conclusion.
The defense will be calling yet another medical expert to testify, following the testimony on Wednesday by physician Wayne Derman. Derman’s turn on the stand was heavily criticized by chief prosecutor Gerrie Nel.
Nel argued that Derman’s relationship and familiarity with Pistorius made it impossible for the man to offer an unbiased testimony. Derman had testified that Pistorius’s life-long disability made him highly anxious by nature.
The physician said that despite his relationship with Pistorius he could provide information objectively.
Defense attorney Barry Roux has said he should be able to wrap up defense testimony by Tuesday. It’s expected that a break will follow, after which the prosecution and defense will make their final arguments.
The closing remarks may turn out to be the most crucial moment of the trial for both the prosecution and defense. It is the last opportunity for both sides to firmly state their cases to Judge Thokozile Masipa, who is solely responsible for determining the 27-year-old defendant’s fate.
Pistorius is on trial for fatally shooting former girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day 2013.
Pistorius fired four shots through a bathroom door, allegedly because he believed an intruder had broken into his home and his life was in danger. Instead he’d killed Steenkamp, who he maintains that he somehow mistook for an intruder.
The prosecution has presented a case that suggests that Pistorius killed Steenkamp following an argument in the early morning hours. Several witnesses claimed to have heard the screams of a woman between gunshots.
The defense has countered that it was Pistorius himself that witnesses heard.
Once both sides make the final arguments regarding their narrative as to what occurred that day, Masipa could find Pistorius not guilty or she may send him to jail.
The athlete faces a maximum of 25 years in prison.
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