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Olympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius freed after serving practically 9 years in jail for killing girlfriend

Olympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius freed after serving practically 9 years in jail for killing girlfriend


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PRETORIA, South Africa — Olympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius, a double-amputee who grew to become a world star competing at his sport’s highest stage whereas operating on carbon-fiber blades, was launched from jail on Friday after serving practically 9 years for killing his girlfriend, the mannequin Reeva Steenkamp.

Pistorius, 37, quietly left the Atteridgeville Correctional Heart in Pretoria and was processed at a parole workplace earlier than being launched to his household, Division of Corrections spokesperson Singabakho Nxumalo advised the Related Press. Nxumalo, who referred to Pistorius’ launch as an “operation” designed to keep away from a media scramble, declined to provide additional particulars.

“I can solely let you know he was launched this morning,” Nxumalo stated.

Pistorius served practically 9 years of his homicide sentence of 13 years and 5 months for the deadly taking pictures of Steenkamp at his residence on Valentine’s Day 2013. He grew to become eligible for early launch having served at the least half his sentence, and was permitted for parole in November.

Pistorius will reside below strict parole circumstances, together with a ban on chatting with the media, till his sentence expires in December 2029. He’s anticipated to initially reside at his uncle’s mansion within the upscale Pretoria suburb of Waterkloof, which is the place he stayed throughout his seven-month trial in 2014.

A police van was outdoors that home and a police officer was seen popping out later Friday. The officer declined to remark to reporters. Three black personal safety autos had been additionally parked in entrance of the mansion.

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Press collect outdoors the house of Oscar Pistorius’ uncle within the upmarket suburb of Waterkloof, Pretoria, South Africa, Friday. South African athlete Pistorius has been launched from jail on parole after serving practically 9 years in jail for killing his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day in 2013 . (Photograph: Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi, Related Press)

Pistorius and his brother and sister grew up below the care of their uncle and aunt, Arnold and Lois Pistorius, after changing into estranged from their father. Pistorius’ mom died when he was an adolescent. Arnold Pistorius was seen driving out of the house, as was Pistorius’ sister, Aimee.

Pistorius’ trial drew a horde of media from world wide, and despite the fact that corrections officers warned forward of time that he would not be “paraded” for the cameras upon his launch, just a few dozen reporters, photographers and TV cameras had been camped outdoors the jail within the hopes of seeing him depart.

Pistorius maintains that he shot the 29-year-old Steenkamp in error after mistaking her for a harmful intruder hiding in a rest room in his Pretoria villa in the midst of the night time. He fired 4 occasions by way of a locked bathroom cubicle door, hitting Steenkamp within the head, hip and hand. He claimed he fired in what he believed was self-defense and that he did not comprehend it was his girlfriend within the cubicle. Prosecutors alleged at his trial that he killed her deliberately in anger throughout a late-night argument.

Along with her profession as a mannequin, Steenkamp was a actuality TV star and legislation graduate and had turn into an activist towards the scourge of violence towards girls in South Africa, a tragic irony given her personal demise. She and Pistorius had solely been relationship for just a few months.

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A mourner carries a program on the funeral for Reeva Steenkamp, in Port Elizabeth, South Africa on Feb. 19, 2013. Oscar Pistorius was launched from jail Friday after serving practically 9 years for the taking pictures demise of girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp. (Photograph: Schalk van Zuydam, Related Press)

Steenkamp’s mom, June Steenkamp, stated in a press release Friday she had accepted Pistorius’ parole, though the ache of her daughter’s demise was “nonetheless uncooked and actual.” Steenkamp’s father, Barry Steenkamp, died final 12 months.

“Has there been justice for Reeva? Has Oscar served sufficient time? There can by no means be justice if the one you love is rarely coming again, and no period of time served will deliver Reeva again,” June Steenkamp stated. “We who stay behind are those serving a life sentence.”

“With the discharge of Oscar Pistorius on parole, my solely want is that I shall be allowed to reside my final years in peace with my focus remaining on the Reeva Rebecca Steenkamp Basis, to proceed Reeva’s legacy.”

The Division of Corrections has emphasised that the champion Paralympic sprinter’s launch — like each different offender on parole — doesn’t imply he has accomplished his sentence.


We who stay behind are those serving a life sentence.

–June Steenkamp


Pistorius’ parole circumstances embody restrictions on when he is allowed to depart residence, a ban on consuming alcohol, and orders that he should attend applications on anger administration and violence towards girls. He should additionally carry out group service.

Pistorius additionally should commonly meet with parole officers and shall be subjected to unannounced visits by authorities. He isn’t allowed to depart the Waterkloof district with out permission and isn’t allowed to talk to the media till the top of his sentence. He might be despatched again to jail if he’s in breach of any of his parole circumstances.

South Africa doesn’t use monitoring gadgets on parolees. However the Division of Corrections stated a parole official will continually monitor Pistorius, who should inform the official of any main adjustments in his life, similar to if he desires to get a job or change addresses.

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Oscar Pistorius leaves the Excessive Court docket in Pretoria, South Africa, on June 15, 2016, after his sentencing proceedings. Pistorius was launched from jail on parole Friday after serving practically 9 years of his homicide sentence for the taking pictures demise of girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day 2013. (Photograph: Themba Hadebe, Related Press)

As soon as a rich athlete who drove sports activities vehicles and fancy bikes and had endorsements from Nike, Pistorius was left broke after his prolonged homicide trial, his chief protection lawyer stated in 2014. He offered the home the place he killed Steenkamp to pay a few of his authorized payments.

Steenkamp’s household didn’t oppose his parole utility in November, though June Steenkamp stated then that she did not consider Pistorius had been absolutely rehabilitated and that he was nonetheless mendacity concerning the taking pictures.

Earlier than the killing, Pistorius was seen as an inspiring function mannequin after having had each of his legs amputated beneath the knee as a child due to a congenital situation. He grew to become a champion sprinter on his carbon-fiber operating blades and made historical past by competing towards nondisabled athletes on the 2012 London Olympics.

His homicide trial destroyed his picture. He was accused of being susceptible to indignant outbursts and performing recklessly with weapons, whereas witnesses testified about altercations he had with others, together with an argument wherein he allegedly threatened to interrupt a person’s legs.

Pistorius was first convicted of culpable murder — a cost akin to manslaughter — and sentenced to 5 years in jail for killing Steenkamp. After appeals by prosecutors, he was in the end discovered responsible of homicide and had his sentence elevated, though that judgment by the Supreme Court docket of Attraction nonetheless did not definitively rule that he knew it was Steenkamp behind the toilet door.

Pistorius was first despatched to jail in 2014, was launched on home arrest in 2015 throughout an attraction, after which despatched again to jail in 2016. He was initially incarcerated on the most safety Kgosi Mampuru II Jail in Pretoria however was moved to Atteridgeville early in his sentence as a result of it is higher suited to holding disabled prisoners.

Response to Pistorius’ parole has been muted in South Africa, in stark distinction to the primary days and months after Steenkamp’s killing, which sparked indignant protests outdoors of the courthouse calling for him to obtain a protracted jail sentence. There isn’t a demise penalty in South Africa.

“He has ticked all the required bins,” stated Themba Masango, secretary common of Not In My Identify Worldwide, a bunch that campaigns towards violence towards girls. “And we will solely want and hope Oscar Pistorius will come out a greater human being.”

“We are inclined to overlook that there’s a chance the place any individual will be rehabilitated.”

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Written by bourbiza mohamed

Bourbiza Mohamed is a freelance journalist and political science analyst holding a Master's degree in Political Science. Armed with a sharp pen and a discerning eye, Bourbiza Mohamed contributes to various renowned sites, delivering incisive insights on current political and social issues. His experience translates into thought-provoking articles that spur dialogue and reflection.

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