Oscar Pistorius walked through a South African courtroom without his prosthetic legs on Wednesday as he tried to convince a sentencing judge he was vulnerable when he shot and killed his girlfriend in 2013.
The Sun reported
that Pistorius is facing 15 years in prison for the murder of Reeva Steenkamp. He is scheduled to be sentenced on July 6.
Pistorius wore a t-shirt and athletic shorts as he walked on his amputated legs in front of a packed courtroom during a hearing that was televised on national television in South Africa. A star in the 2012 Olympics, he became the first amputee sprinter to compete in the famed games, using blade-like prosthetics that earned him the nickname "Blade Runner," noted BBC Sports
"I don't want to overplay vulnerability … I don't want to overplay disability," defense attorney Barry Roux said, according to The Guardian
. "It doesn't mean because he's vulnerable that he can do what he likes. That's not what we say. But when we're entering the field of sentencing, look at that man's conduct … Please let's understand … who is this man that you must sentence?"
Prosecutor Gerrie Nel told Judge Thokozile Masipa that she should give Pistorius at least the minimum of 15 years in prison and that the Paralympic gold medalist has given "no acceptable explanation" for why she shot Steenkamp.
The hearing could be the end of long legal battle over Pistorius's 2013 Valentine's Day shooting of Steenkamp. Pistorius claimed that he mistakenly shot Steenkamp through a bathroom door at their Pretoria home, mistaking her for an intruder, according to CNN
Pistorius was initially convicted of culpable homicide, but the country's Supreme Court overturned the conviction in December, giving the track star the more serious verdict of murder. Pistorius has looked gaunt and dazed at times during his trial.
Pistorius was born without fibulas, or calf bones, and his parents decided to have his legs amputated below the knees when he was 11 months old, wrote The Daily Mail
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