Pistorius Unable to Enter Home, Train, as Trial Enters Next Stages
(PRETORIA, South Africa) — Among the conditions attached to Oscar Pistorius’ bail agreement is that the Olympic sprinter is barred from entering his own home, where he shot his model-girlfriend to death on Valentine’s Day.
The luxury home in Pretoria, South Africa, is an active crime scene and, as such, is off limits to all but the new team of investigators appointed last week after the alleged murderer’s bail hearing exposed cracks in the prosecution’s case.
Detectives are still combing the scene — Pistorius’ bed and en-suite bathroom in particular — for clues that might have been missed during the initial stages of the investigation.
The hearing at which Pistorius was granted bail suggested that the door through which Pistorius shot Reeva Steenkamp will form an integral part of the investigation, as will both Steenkamp and Pistorius’ cell phones. Forensic experts and blood spatter analysts will also use data collected from the scene in an attempt to reconstruct the events that played out in the early hours of Feb. 14.
Pistorius, 26, says he shot Steenkamp, 29, by accident, mistaking her for an intruder.
Prosecutors have three months to prepare for Pistorius’ next appearance in the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court, but it is unlikely that the trial will start before the last quarter of the year. As is routine, the prosecution is likely to request a postponement when the case resumes June 4. Only after prosecutors are satisfied that they have all the evidence needed to secure a conviction will they serve an indictment on Pistorius, which will outline the exact charges against him. A High Court trial date will be determined after the indictment has been served.
For now, the man dubbed the “Blade Runner” stands accused of premeditated murder, but authorities have already indicated that at least one other charge, relating to the possession of unlicensed ammunition, will be added to the charge sheet.
Pistorius, who was released Friday on about $113,000 bond, is prohibited by his bail conditions from returning to his home in a high-security complex in eastern Pretoria. Instead, he is living with his uncle, Arnold, in the latter’s home in the affluent Waterkloof suburb, where he has been meeting with his legal team, coach and agent.
It’s still unclear when, if ever, Pistorius will start training again but he cancelled all his upcoming events shortly after the shooting.
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