Tags: oscar pistorius | appeal | rejected | murder

Oscar Pistorius' Appeal to Overturn Murder Conviction Rejected

Image: Oscar Pistorius' Appeal to Overturn Murder Conviction Rejected
Oscar Pistorius' appeal to overturn his conviction in the murder of girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp has been rejected. (Waldo Sweigers/AFP/Getty Images)

By    |   Friday, 04 Mar 2016 02:27 PM

Oscar Pistorius’ appeal of his murder conviction was rejected by South Africa's highest court, the latest development in the case of the 2013 death of the Paralympic gold medalist’s girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.

A judge is expected to sentence Pistorius for murder at a hearing scheduled for April 18, The Associated Press reported.

The so-called “Blade Runner” is under house arrest at his uncle's mansion in Pretoria. He served one year of a five-year jail sentence for manslaughter before his manslaughter conviction was overturned and he was convicted of murder. The minimum sentence for murder in South Africa is 15 years.

The double amputee shot Steenkamp four times through a bathroom door at his home in 2013. He said he had mistaken his 29-year-old girlfriend for an intruder. Prosecutors said he killed her after an argument.

"The identity of victim is irrelevant to his guilt," Judge Eric Leach said, according to CNN. Leach said Pistorius should have acted more rationally and foreseen that firing four shots through the bathroom door would kill whoever was inside.

Sentencing will be before Judge Thokozile Masipa, who delivered the original manslaughter conviction, the BBC reported.

Pistorius’ rejected appeal was his last chance to overturn his murder conviction.

South Africa’s Times newspaper reported that Pistorius responded angrily to a text from a reporter: "I have asked you not to call me. Do you have no soul to respect someone in a time like this that all you can think of is your career?"

A friend of the former sprinter, boxer Kevin Lerena, told the Daily Mail in December that Pistorius was “terrified” of going back to jail, depressed, and “might do something stupid” rather than return to jail.

Supporters of Pistorius launched a petition to the United Nations Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner on Change.org objecting to this week’s decision and the murder conviction.

“(W)e believe the Constitutional Rights, Rule of Law and Human Rights for Oscar Pistorius as a citizen of South Africa has been violated and discriminated against his disability, vulnerability and anxiety from the outset,” the petition said.

Others were less sympathetic.





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Oscar Pistorius' appeal of his murder conviction was rejected by South Africa's highest court, the latest development in the case of the 2013 death of the Paralympic gold medalist's girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.
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2016-27-04
Friday, 04 Mar 2016 02:27 PM
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