Pistorius Appeals Murder Conviction

PistoriusSouth African athlete Oscar Pistorius is to seek an appeal against his conviction for murdering his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp.

The athlete’s defence lawyer has filed an application to South Africa’s Constitutional Court, urging a review of his murder conviction.

Pistorius killed Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day in 2013 after firing four times through a locked toilet door.

He claimed he mistook her for a bugler and prosecutors argued he did not plan to kill her.

The Supreme Court upgraded the 29-year-old athlete’s sentence to murder from culpable homicide, South Africa’s equivalent of manslaughter, for which he had received a five-year sentence.

South Africa’s Supreme Court of Appeal ruled that the lower court did not correctly apply the rule of dolus eventualis – whether Pistorius knew that a death would be a likely result of his actions.

Known as “Blade Runner” because of the carbon fibre prosthetic blades he used to race, Pistorius now faces a minimum 15-year jail sentence for murdering his girlfriend.

Pistorius won six Paralympic gold medals and was the first double-amputee runner to compete at the Olympic Games.

Oscar Pistorius Found Guilty Of Murder

Oscar PistoriusA South African appeals court overturned an earlier manslaughter verdict on Oscar Pistorius with the paralympic star now found guilty of murder.

South Africa’s Supreme Court of Appeal ruled that the lower court did not correctly apply the rule of dolus eventualis – whether Pistorius knew that a death would be a likely result of his actions.

Pistorious killed his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in February 2013 after shooting four times through a locked toilet door.

He is currently under house arrest after spending one year of his original five-year sentence in jail. He will have to return to court to be re-sentenced, for murder.

The minimum sentence for murder in South Africa is 15 years, but judges can apply some discretion.

In October 2014, a South African court had sentenced Oscar Pistorius to five years in jail.

The paralympic runner was convicted of culpable homicide for shooting his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.

Judge Thokozile Masipa, issuing the ruling in court in Pretoria, also gave Pistorius a three-year suspended sentence for a firearms charge.

The prosecution had called for a minimum 10-year sentence, while the defence called for community service and house arrest.

Pistorius was convicted of culpable homicide but cleared of murder.