PRETORIA — Prosecutors trying to prove that Oscar Pistorius murdered his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp appeared to have won a round yesterday morning, but it was the defence team that was smiling by the end of the day.
Yesterday’s testimony began with the expert who conducted the autopsy on Steenkamp, Gert Saayman. He backed two key points of the State’s case.
He estimated that Steenkamp had eaten about two hours before she died, which contradicts Pistorius’ version of events, and he said that the victim would have been able to scream after the first two bullets hit her, as the prosecution argues.
“I think it would be somewhat abnormal if one did not scream when sustaining a wound of this nature,” Saayman testified of the “particularly devastating” injury to Steenkamp’s right arm.
A day earlier he described in graphic detail the damage that Pistorius’ bullets did to Steenkamp’s body, leaving the defendant vomiting, dry heaving, weeping and clutching his head in his hands.
Pistorius (27) was calm in court.
He pleaded not guilty to murder, although he admits killing his 29-year-old girlfriend by shooting her through a locked bathroom
door. He mistook her for a burglar in his house in the middle of the night, he maintains, saying he made a tragic but understandable mistake.
The prosecution is trying to build a circumstantial case that Pistorius is trigger-happy and that the couple argued before he killed her.
Pistorius’ friend Darren Fresco, who was present for both incidents, was on the stand for the State most of the day.