Now that Oscar Pistorius’s mental health results are in, it’s clear that whatever happened in the early hours of February 14th, 2014, the 27-year-old had his faculties about him.
After a 30-day evaluation by a panel of mental health experts, it was determined that Pistorius does not suffer from any mental disorder whatsoever. On the night he fatally shot his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, he was capable of telling right from wrong.
Though both the defense and prosecution accepted the panel’s findings, it must have been a serious blow to the hopes of Pistorius’s attorneys.
Had the panel found Pistorius to possess a mental disorder that could have interfered with his decision-making, the case would likely have ended immediately with Pistorius found not guilty.
[LISTEN] North Gauteng High Court hears about #OscarPistorius’s temper http://t.co/a8p1Bu57Qc #OscarTrial pic.twitter.com/3lWk6hGRRR
— Eyewitness News (@ewnupdates) July 1, 2014
After the beating that Pistorius’s story took during cross-examination by chief prosecutor Gerrie Nel, the defendant’s lawyers have desperately sought a reprieve for their client.
With a mental health defense out of the question, Pistorius’s team is now attacking the centerpiece of the prosecution’s case: Reeva Steenkamp’s dying screams, which several neighbors testified that they heard around the time she was killed.
— CBC News (@CBCNews) July 1, 2014
The screams were used by prosecutors to suggest that what witnesses heard were the screams of a woman in fear of her life who was purposely gunned down by her boyfriend.
The defense is trying to counter by saying that what witnesses heard that day was NOT the defendant’s 29-year-old girlfriend…but Pistorius himself.
His defense called acoustics Ivan Lin to the stand, where he testified that ambient noises make it difficult to accurately identify sounds over a long distance.
Nel insisted that the witnesses were certain that it was a woman’s screams they heard and that a woman’s screams have a more “tonal character”.
Lin answered that he could not say for certain whether Pistorius’s neighbors were “correct or incorrect”.
As bizarre as an argument it is to make, time is running out for the defense to convincingly prove their case.
Failure means that Pistorius could be sent to jail for decades.
Image via YouTube