Pistorius's paranoia on crime tackled

The prosecutor has challenged the athlete’s alleged paranoia about crime.

Oscar Pistorius is escorted into the High Court in Pretoria ahead of day 21 of his murder trial. Picture: Sebabatso Mosamo/EWN

PRETORIA - Cross-examination of Oscar Pistorius continued today with state prosecutor Gerrie 'Bull Terrier' Nel questioning him about his alleged fear of crime.

The athlete faces a charge of premeditated murder for shooting and killing his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine's Day last year.

He is also facing two separate firearm-related charges.

When court resumed this morning, Nel put into record that Steenkamp's mother June had confirmed that Pistorius had requested a meeting before the trial, but the family was not ready to meet him.

Nel said that he received the message from June via her advocate.

June Steenkamp leaves court on 10 April 2014. Picture: Sebabatso Mosamo/EWN


Nel asked him if he ever reported a crime to the police? To which Pistorius responded that he hadn't.

The prosecutor then asked, "If you've been so exposed to crime, why did you never report it?"

Pistorius replied, "For the burglary I was away at the time and didn't have insurance anyway. When I was shot at, I didn't think that the police would be able to help me. There were several attempts to improve security measures at the estate."

Nel asked Pistorius if he was so concerned about his safety, why didn't he stay up to date with estate security upgrades.

"Did you ever report your security concerns to the home owners' association?"

Pistorius said, "No because I wasn't at home for half the year."


Nel then moved on to the alarm system which Pistorius claimed to have activated both inside and outside.

Pistorius said there were concerns that the painting contractors removed the outside alarm sensors.

Nel pushed Pistorius on this point and said he found an inconsistency between Pistorius's evidence-in-chief and in his evidence today regarding what was done with the sensors during two different repaints of his house.

Pistorius said he hadn't changed anything and Nel maintained that he was tailoring his evidence.

State prosecutor Gerrie 'Bull Terrier' Nel. Picture: Pool.

Nel said Pistorius could not have misinterpreted his questions and was now over-explaining himself.

The 'Bull Terrier' said Pistorius had never given evidence about painters tampering with his alarms when he made a statement in February 2013.

Pistorius suggested that his defence team may have left it out.

Sarcastically, Nel said he would add this to defence advocate Roux's list of mistakes.

He said Roux would never make the mistakes Pistorius suggested.

Pistorius quickly turned around and said he didn't know why he didn't mention the alarm problems during painting previously.

Nel again accused Pistorius of tailoring his evidence.

Pistorius then said that he turned off his alarm system after the shooting when he went downstairs to open the doors for his neighbours.

Nel again accused Pistorius of making mistakes and lying.

To which the accused replied that he was extremely tired and mistakes might happen.

Judge Thokozile Masipa interjected and clarified with Pistorius whether he was too tired to continue with proceedings.

Pistorius said he was fine and would continue.

Nel then asked Pistorius if he left his bedroom while the alarm was activated, would it then go off?

Pistorius said nothing would happen because the first alarm beacon was at the top of the stairs. He explained that the alarm keypad was before that point.

Nel then questioned him on why the open balcony door didn't bother him while he was in bed watching TV.

Pistorius replied, "I was awake so it didn't bother me."


Nel moved on and questioned Pistorius about an incident on the highway when he claimed to have been shot at while driving, which Pistorius clarified.

"I was being followed by a black Mercedes and how saw a muzzle flash. I was able to turn off quickly, fortunately. I can't remember the day of the week, only that it was around 10pm."

Nel asked why he did nothing about this and asked if there was not a road rage incident or any altercation, to which Pistorius said there wasn't.

Nel asked Pistorius why he thought someone shot at him.

Pistorius said he had no idea but took the exit, sped up and went back on the highway in the opposite direction and then took the next turn off.

He then pulled over in a car park and made a phone call, but could not remember who he called.

Nel said it was highly improbable that Pistorius could not remember who it was that he phoned.

He added that it didn't make sense at all and felt that Pistorius was covering this entire story up as he just didn't want anybody to check up on this.


Nel moved onto the incident involving Pistorius and TV producer Quinton van der Burgh at the Kyalami racetrack.

Van der burgh had taken Pistorius's ex-girlfriend Samantha Taylor for an overseas trip while he was at the Beijing Olympics.

Pistorius said he didn't argue with him, but explained that van der Burgh took Taylor overseas on the pretence of work and he was much older than her.

"He was manipulative. He stared at me the whole morning at Kyalami and, as I tried to leave, he looked at me again and so I decided to approach him and tell him what I thought of him. I didn't swear or shout at him. "

Pistorius said van der Burgh eventually sent him a letter and clearly wanted to pick a fight.

After a confusing line of questioning regarding his break-up with Taylor to a meeting with Mark Batchelor at the Hawks, Nel showed that Pistorius was the common denominator in his various confrontations.

Nel also accused Pistorius of looking for trouble, and was now lying about his version of events.

Additional reporting in this article appears courtesy of EWN's Live Blog.