Prosecution: Oscar must spend time behind bars

Prosecutor Gerrie Nel is today expected to ask the court that Pistorius do at least some time behind bars.

Oscar Pistorius talks to one of his lawyers Brian Webber at the High Court in Pretoria where he is appearing for sentencing procedures for shooting his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on 13 October 2014. Picture: Pool.

PRETORIA - The prosecution in the Oscar Pistorius case is expected to ask the court that the athlete be sent to jail rather than be sentenced to house arrest, as suggested by the defence.

Prosecutor Gerrie Nel is today expected to ask the court that Pistorius do at least some time behind bars.

To make his case, Nel will likely focus on the impact of the athlete's actions on Reeva's friends and family.

He could call one of the model's friends to testify, like former housemate Gina Myers.

The prosecution is also likely to ask the court to sentence the Paralympic superstar to the maximum possible time behind bars.

The defence is expected to round off its arguments in mitigation of sentence today.

The state will then have an opportunity to argue in aggravation.

Having not successfully secured a murder conviction, Nel will be going for the next best thing; a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison for a culpable homicide conviction.

He'll likely argue today that Pistorius acted with gross negligence in discharging his firearm and a strong message should be sent to society.

On Monday, a Correctional Services social worker told the court that the blade runner was a suitable candidate for correctional supervision.

Pistorius was convicted of culpable homicide for the 2013 killing of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine's Day.

He maintains he mistook her for an intruder.

Nel reacted with irritation and astonishment to social worker Joel Maringa's suggestion that Pistorius be sentenced to three years of correctional supervision.

Maringa also recommended that Pistorius be sentenced to 16 hours of community service a month, which would see the athlete sweeping floors or doing similar domestic work.

The prosecution has argued that such a sentence would be shockingly inappropriate.

Pistorius's manager Peet van Zyl also described him as a deeply caring and considerate man, who contributed immensely to causes for people with disabilities.

But Nel disagreed, saying he should be punished for his negligence.

"If somebody is grossly negligent and somebody in the blink of a moment committed a crime the sentence between the two should be different. Gross negligence should be different."

Van Zyl says Pistorius is a selfless man who gave up his time and money to support others.

"I have yet to meet a more accommodating person, a more humble person that will always go out of his way to make other people feel at ease."

Van Zyl says since the guilty verdict all sponsors have terminated their contracts with the blade runner and there are no plans to pursue his career.

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Follow the court proceedings live on EWN's Oscar Pistorius trial blog.