Pistorius trial: Third witness back on stand

Neighbour Charl Johnson is being cross-examined by Advocate Barry Roux.

Oscar Pistorius in the dock after arriving at the High Court in Pretoria on the fourth day of his murder trial on 6 March 2014. Picture: Pool.

PRETORIA - Oscar Pistorius has arrived at the High Court in Pretoria for day four of his murder trial.

Proceedings started with continued testimony and cross-examination of third witnesses Charl Johnson.

Johnson is seated in the witness box.

Defence advocate Barry Roux has reminded Johnson that he was dealing with the similarities between his and his wife's evidence.

Johnson's wife, Michelle Burger, was the state's first witness to testify.

Roux has referred to the court record, quoting Johnson, who told the court "my wife testified…"

The defence advocate wanted to know how Johnson knew what his wife had testified.

Johnson could not explain it, but reiterated that he did not hear his wife's testimony.

He also did not provide his notes to investigating officer Mike Van Aardt as he didn't want them.

Johnson made his notes available to Roux which were written on 6 March 2013 when police visited his house.

Roux said the creation of the note coincided with the visit from two police officers.

EWN video: Guns and neighbours


Yesterday, Johnson was cornered by Roux during cross-examination.

Before a 30-minute adjournment, Roux systematically went through Johnson's testimony and compared it to Burger's by drawing similarities.

Roux also compared the couple's testimony to their statements, and picked up discrepancies.

He showed that both Burger and Johnson testified about the intensity of screams, but neither mentioned it in their statements.

"Mr Johnson, maybe I must stop you here because you don't know what you are doing to yourself."

Roux said Johnson illustrated what he tried to prove to the court - that he and his wife discussed her testimony.

Roux said for a witness to be considered reliable, they needed to maintain strong independent versions, and in this regard, Johnson had failed.

The defence advocate said, "You could just have well stood there in that box with your wife."

Johnson said he was absolutely certain that the noises he heard were gunshots

There were disputes that the sound was a cricket bat on the bathroom door.

Roux plotted a timeline to illustrate to Johnson that the noises he heard, based on his version, were in fact the noises of a bat on door.

Roux then switched to the issue of the notes Johnson made on the advice of an advocate.

He then asked if he wrote them with his wife.

Johnson said he made his notes at work and said Burger also made her own notes.

Roux then asked for an adjournment for Johnson to make his notes available to the court.

After returning from a 30-minute adjournment, Nel addressed the court as there was trouble accessing Johnson's notes.

Nel then suggested the witness stand down and said plans would be made to access the notes which would be made available to the defence.


On Wednesday, professional boxer Kevin Lerena testified about a meeting at Tashas restaurant in Melrose Arch where a firearm Pistorius was handling went off.

Professional boxer Kevin Lerena testifying.

Lerena testified how Pistorius handled a firearm under a table in the busy restaurant before it went off.

The prosecution's fifth witness was the owner of Tashas restaurant, Jason Loupis.

He told the court Pistorius and his three friends all apologised for the shooting and confirmed the athlete did not return to the establishment after the incident.

Loupis's wife, Maria, also testified on Wednesday afternoon before the matter was adjourned.

The state has 107 witnesses lined up for the trial.

Get all the latest developments on the EWN Oscar Pistorius portal.