PRETORIA, South Africa Paralympic superstar Oscar Pistorius, a national hero known as the Blade Runner for his high-tech artificial legs, was charged Thursday with murder in the death of his girlfriend, who was shot inside his home in South Africa.
Reeva Steenkamp, a model who spoke out on Twitter against rape and abuse of women, was shot four times in the predawn hours in the home, in a gated community in the capital, Pretoria, police said.
Hours later after undergoing police questioning, Pistorius left a police station accompanied by officers. He looked down as photographers snapped pictures, the hood on his gray workout jacket pulled up, covering most of his face. His court hearing was originally scheduled for Thursday afternoon but has been postponed until Friday to give forensic investigators time to carry out their work, said Medupe Simasiku, a spokesman for the prosecution.
Police said there had “previously been incidents at the home of Mr. Oscar Pistorius.” Police in South Africa do not name suspects in crimes until they have appeared in court, but police spokesman Brigadier Denise Beukes said the 26-year-old Pistorius was at his home at the time of the death of Steenkamp and “there is no other suspect involved.”
“Yes, there are witnesses, and there have also been interviews this morning,” Beukes told reporters outside the gated complex where Pistorius lived. “We are talking about neighbors and people that heard things that happened earlier in the evening and when the shooting took place.”
Police said that earlier reports that Steenkamp may have been mistaken for a burglar by Pistorius did not come from the police. Several local media outlets had initially reported that the shooting may have been accidental.
Read tomorrow's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette for full details.