News World News

Monday 22 September 2014

Oscar Pistorius trial: Athlete's friend asked him if 'he was f***ing mad' after shooting incident

Maria Tadeo & Tom Peck

Published 11/03/2014 | 12:54

  • Share
Olympic and Paralympic track star Oscar Pistorius sits in the dock at the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria March 11, 2014. Pistorius is on trial for the murder of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp at his suburban Pretoria home on Valentine's Day last year. REUTERS/Kim Ludbrook/Pool  (SOUTH AFRICA - Tags: SPORT CRIME LAW)
Olympic and Paralympic track star Oscar Pistorius sits in the dock at the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria March 11, 2014. Pistorius is on trial for the murder of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp at his suburban Pretoria home on Valentine's Day last year
Oscar Pistorius sits in the dock as he listens to cross questioning about the events surrounding the shooting death of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, in court during the second week of his trial in Pretoria, South Africa, Tuesday, March 11, 2014. Pistorius is charged with the shooting death of  Steenkamp, on Valentines Day in 2013. (AP Photo/Kevin Sutherland, Pool)
Oscar Pistorius sits in the dock as he listens to cross questioning about the events surrounding the shooting death of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, in court during the second week of his trial in Pretoria, South Africa

A friend of Oscar Pistorius asked him if he "was f***ing mad" after the athlete fired a shot out the sunroof of a car following an altercation with traffic police, Pretoria's High Court heard.

  • Share
  • Go To

Darren Fresco, who was identified by two witnesses as being with the athlete on two occasions when a gun was fired in public, told the court the athlete was "furious" after a police officer "touched his gun" when he was stopped for speeding in 2012.

"Then without prior warning, he shot out of the sunroof," he told the court. "Apologies for my language, my Lady. But I asked him if he was f***ing mad."

During his cross-examination, defence counsel Barry Roux questioned his version of events arguing Samantha Taylor, Pistorius' former girlfriend, who was also in the car that day, told the court both Mr Fresco and Pistorius said they wanted to "shoot a robot" and laughed.

Mr Fresco said he could not remember saying that.

"That's an interesting answer. Not that you remember. Does that mean you're happy that your version is the truth?

"In which case your answer should be - that did not happen. I did not say I wanted to shoot a robot," Mr Roux said.

Earlier, Mr Fresco told the court Pistorius asked him to take the blame after his gun, a Glock 27 .40 caliber pistol being handled by Blade Runner, went off under a table at a restaurant in a separate incident in early 2013 .

Mr Fresco said he told the sprinter he was "one up"- meaning there was a bullet loaded into the chamber of the gun- before passing the gun under the table. He said he knew of Pistorius' "big love of weapons" and assumed he "had competency with it".

Pistorius allegedly asked him to take the blame for it because he there was too much media attention around him. Being a friend, Mr Fresco said he agreed to do it "with pleasure".

The incident forms of the basis of one of three separate firearms charges which Pistorius is facing in his trial, in addition to the main charge of murdering girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp.

Pistorius arrived in court for the seventh day of his murder trial dressed in a dark suit and wearing glasses. He sat in the dock next to a green sick bucket.

On Monday, the South African sports star threw up multiple times as court heard graphic evidence from Professor Gert Saayman, the pathologist who performed the post-mortem on Ms Steenkamp.

The autopsy revealed the 29-year old model was shot in the right hip, the right elbow, and the right temple from a 9mm pistol carrying bullets designed to "penetrate and then mushroom" on impact, causing extensive damage on the model's body.

Returning to the witness box for a second day, Prof Saayman said it was likely she would have screamed after being shot through the arm and hip. He added the shot that struck her in the head was "in a different league" and would have been fatal almost instantly.

Last week, neighbours of Pistorius claimed to have heard a woman screaming the night Ms Steenkamp died. The athlete's defence argues Pistorius sounds "like a woman" when he is feeling anxious.

Prof Saayman also told the court that the vegetable matter food found in her stomach was likely to have been ingested within two hours of her death at 3am, which appears to contradict Pistorius' claim that the couple went to bed at around 10pm.

When asked about studies that show meals can sometimes take up to four hours to digest, the Professor said they would be "statistical outliers".

"As scientists we must basis our analysis on what science has most frequently shown", he added.

Prof Saayman admitted that he is not an expert on "gastric emptying" but highlighted he has performed more than 10,000 autopsies over 30 years.

Last week, Pistorius pleaded not guilty of murdering Ms Steenkamp, claiming he shot her in a case of mistaken identity thinking she was an intruder

Prosecutors argue he intentionally shot and killed  his girlfriend following a domestic dispute. If convicted of murder he will almost certainly receive a life sentence, with a minimum term of 25 years.

The case continues.

Independent.co.uk

Read More

Editors Choice

Also in World News