Saturday 17 August 2019

Oscar Pistorius beginning community service over Reeva Steenkamp death

Oscar Pistorius reports for community service at Garsfontein police station in Pretoria. (AP)
Oscar Pistorius reports for community service at Garsfontein police station in Pretoria. (AP)

Oscar Pistorius has walked into a police station to report for community service, the first public sighting of the athlete since he was released from jail in secret last month and moved to house arrest.

Pistorius was wearing a black baseball cap and sunglasses when he arrived at Garsfontein police station in the South African capital Pretoria.

In a video clip published by South African media, a woman says, "Hi Oscar, how are you?", as Pistorius walks past a small group of journalists outside the station. Pistorius does not reply.

He is serving a five-year sentence for shooting to death girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in 2013.

The double-amputee athlete was released from jail on October 19 to serve the remaining four years of the sentence under house arrest.

Pistorius can only leave home for specific reasons, like attending church or for the community service tasks he has been ordered to do.

Looking thin and pale, Pistorius arrived in a white T-shirt and baggy khaki trousers, and had a backpack on.

He was accompanied by an unidentified woman who Eyewitness News said was a social worker.

He is under house arrest at his uncle's mansion in the eastern suburbs of Pretoria.

Having been acquitted of murder last year, the 28-year-old is facing a second legal challenge.

Prosecutors argued at the Supreme Court on November 3 that Pistorius should be found guilty of murder. At the appeal Pistorius's lawyer was grilled by a panel of judges over the Olympic athlete's actions on the night he shot Steenkamp.

Prosecutors argued that the judge at Pistorius's murder trial made errors when she acquitted him of murder.

The panel of five Supreme Court judges has the power to upgrade the culpable homicide conviction to murder, which would mean the runner faces a 15-year jail sentence. The Supreme Court, which can also order a retrial or rule that Pistorius's manslaughter conviction was correct, is expected to give its judgment at the end of this month.

PA Media

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