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Pistorius takes prosthetics off during testimony

By The Associated Press

This article was published April 8, 2014 at 7:28 a.m.

PRETORIA, South Africa — Oscar Pistorius described Tuesday what he said were the terror-filled moments before he shot Reeva Steenkamp to death and removed his prosthetic legs in court during his testimony at his murder trial to show how he stood by the toilet door which he fired into last year.

The actual bullet-riddled toilet door was set up in the courtroom to show how the shooting occurred.

Pistorius said he heard a window open in his bathroom in the early hours of Feb. 14, 2013, causing him to believe intruders had entered his house and to race to get to his gun to defend himself and his girlfriend, who he claims he thought was still in bed.

In a voice quivering with emotion, Pistorius, the world-famous double-amputee athlete, referred to the moment when he said he thought there was a burglar in his home as when "everything changed."

"I wanted to put myself between the person who gained access to my house and Reeva," Pistorius said.

While Pistorius claims his fatal shooting of his girlfriend through the toilet door in his bathroom was a tragic accident caused, in part, by his fear of violent crime, prosecutors maintain he killed the model intentionally and his story of a mistaken shooting is an intricate lie.

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