Reeva Steenkamp, the girlfriend of Olympic and Paralympic athlete Oscar Pistorius, was shot and killed on Valentine’s Day of 2013. Pistorius admitted to shooting her through a closed bathroom door, but has maintained that it was a case of wrongful identity: he thought he was shooting an intruder. After being convicted, he was sentenced to five years in prison, but now–after ten months served–he has been granted parole set for August 21. Steenkamp’s parents say that’s just not good enough.
“We have forgiven Mr. Pistorius. … However, a person found guilty of a crime must be accountable for their actions. Incarceration of 10 months for taking a life is simply not enough,” read a statement written by her family.
Pistorius–who is a double-amputee–told police that he woke in the early morning hours on Valentine’s Day to strange noises coming from the bathroom. The room was dark, he said, and he didn’t check to make sure Reeva was still in bed. Pistorius, an avid gun collector, grabbed a weapon and fired shots through the closed bathroom door, killing Reeva.
But witnesses–neighbors near the home–told a different story during the trial, with Charl Johnson saying he heard shouting and screaming that night and the “intensity and fear in (the woman’s) voice escalated and it was clear that her life was in danger.”
“That’s when the first shots were fired. I remember hearing a succession of shots,” Johnson said. “I heard the lady scream again and the last scream faded moments after the last shot was fired.”
Pistorius will reportedly be placed on house arrest after he’s granted release, but prosecutors have already been granted permission to appeal the judge’s decision to acquit him last September.