Pistorius Denies Murder Charges in Court

Reports of possible steroid use

    Photo: Will Clayton/Flickr

Facing a charge of premeditated murder and a mandatory life sentence if convicted, double amputee sprinter Oscar Pistorius said in a courtroom on Tuesday that he did not intend to shoot his girlfriend when he opened fire on his bathroom door, according to The New York Times.

The prosectuor, Gerrie Nel, said that Pistorius rose from his bed, walked to his bathroom door, and shot four bullets through it with the intention of hitting his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp. Pistorius offered a different version of events, the Times reported.

Mr. Pistorius said he heard a noise from the bathroom and walked on his stumps, not prosthetic legs. He was nervous, he said, because the toilet window did not have burglar bars and contractors who had been working there had left ladders.

The room was dark, he said, and he did not realize that Ms. Steenkamp was not in bed. He felt vulnerable and fearful without his prosthetics and opened fire at the door, he said, then broke it down with a cricket back to discover Ms. Steenkamp.

In a report this past weekend, South Africa's City Press reported that a bloodied cricket bat was found at Pistorius' house and police were investigating whether the equipment was used against Steenkamp. Reports also surfaced that police requested Pistorius' blood be tested for drugs and that steroids had been found in the athlete's bedroom.

Magistrate Desmond Nair adjourned Tuesday's case until Wednesday, without ruling on whether Pistorius would be granted bail. Pistorius has not yet entered a plea.

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