News / Africa

Calls for Tough Justice in Pistorius Case

Calls for Tough Justice in Pistorius Casei
X
February 15, 2014 1:17 PM
The first anniversary of the shooting death of South African model Reeva Steenkamp at the hands of her boyfriend, Paralympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius, has sparked calls for tougher justice in cases of violence against women. VOA's Mark Snowiss reports.
Calls for Tough Justice in Pistorius Case
The first anniversary of the shooting death of South African model Reeva Steenkamp at the hands of her boyfriend, Paralympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius, has sparked protests and calls for tougher justice in cases of violence against women.

The 29-year-old model and reality TV star was shot three times while in Pistorius' bathroom in the pre-dawn hours of Valentine's Day 2013.

The double-amputee sprinter, known as "Blade Runner," told a court last year he shot Steenkamp when he mistook her for an intruder. His trial is set to begin March 3.

When it does, a vocal group of South Africans want the legal system to send a message.

"We wish that all cases could be speedily resolved, conviction rates to be very high and that all those that even think of abusing a woman would think twice before they can even abuse or think of doing anything wrong against a woman or a child here in [the South African province of] Gauteng," said Faith Mazibuko, a member of the Executive Council of Safety and Security.

Pistorius on Friday issued his first public statement about Steenkamp's death.

In a message posted on his Twitter account, he said he would carry the "complete trauma of that day" for the rest of his life.

He faces a possible life sentence with a minimum of 25 years in prison before the chance of parole if he is convicted of premeditated murder in Steenkamp's killing.

The 27-year-old also faces other firearms-related charges. A judge will deliver a verdict. There is no trial by jury in South Africa.

Protesters Friday demanded the once-revered sports hero face transparent justice.

"We want them to ensure that the justice system happens where everybody can see it. They should not make it behind closed doors even if it's legal," said Patricia Chueu of the African National Congress Women's League.

Pistorius was the first double-amputee to run at the world championships and the Olympics.

Mark Snowiss

Mark Snowiss is a Washington D.C.-based multimedia reporter.  He has written and edited for various media outlets including Pacifica and NPR affiliates in Los Angeles. Follow him on Twitter @msnowiss and on Google Plus

You May Like

UN Ambassador Power Highlights Plight of Women Prisoners

She launches the 'Free the 20' campaign, aimed at profiling women being deprived of their freedom around the world More

Satellite Launch Sparks Spectacular Light Show

A slight delay in a satellite launch lit up the Florida sky early this morning More

Fleeing IS Killings in Syria, Family Reaches Bavaria

Exhausted, scared and under-nourished, Khalil and Maha's tale mirrors those of thousands of refugees from war-torn countries who have left their homes in the hopes of finding a better life More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: chukwuemeka ukor from: lagos Nigéria
February 16, 2014 6:17 AM
It is unfortunate that incident happened because the sight of her before shooting must have shown him the girl friend is around before pulling the trigger.Thats why we advise everyone must be very careful before taking any action.

by: Abel Ogah from: OJU Nigeria
February 15, 2014 12:52 PM
Oscar has no hiding place. He seems quilty as charged. Would be murderers should think twice.

by: John from: Bombay
February 15, 2014 9:29 AM
Oscar world can be fooled. He is 100% right if we look at prosecution in which guilty is pre-found i.e 1) When light was on his girl friend not in bed how come it possible to think of burglar instead of girl friend? 2)He said he shot at bathroom and did not use hand stick. What about stains on stick?
To be frank Hollywood Oscar is nothing before this Real Oscar.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs