Jun 30, 2014, 9:47 AM EDT
Oscar Pistorius did not suffer from a mental illness that could have affected his ability to distinguish right from wrong when he shot and killed girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, a mental evaluation panel determined during a month and a half break in his murder trial.
The trial resumed in Pretoria, South Africa, on Monday, its first court session since May 14, when the judge ordered Pistorius be taken for mental tests at the request of the prosecution. A psychiatrist had testified Pistorius suffered from an anxiety disorder.
Pistorius, the first double amputee to run in the Olympics in 2012, was capable of appreciating the wrongfulness of his act on the early morning of Valentine’s Day 2013, according to the panel.
The athlete said he thought an intruder was locked inside his bathroom when he shot four times through a locked door, hitting and killing girlfriend Steenkamp inside.
He faces 25 years to life in prison if convicted of premeditated murder. If found not guilty of premeditated murder, Pistorius could be convicted of culpable homicide, South Africa’s version of manslaughter for negligent killing.
Last week, one of Pistorius’ lawyers said he expected the trial to last a couple more weeks.
The orthopedic surgeon who amputated Pistorius’ legs below the knees when he was 11 months old was one of two witnesses to testify Monday.
Dr. Gerald Versfeld, who said he still treats Pistorius, quoted the athlete talking about his difficulty moving without his prosthetic legs on. Pistorius has said he shot at who he thought was an intruder while on his stumps, feeling extremely vulnerable.
Pistorius is unable to stand still on his stumps and estimated he falls once every week or two weeks when not wearing his legs. The struggles are exacerbated in darkness, such as the circumstances the night of the shooting, he said.
“His ability of fleeing is severely impaired, and his ability to ward off danger is severely impaired on his stumps,” Versfeld said.
Lead prosecutor Gerrie Nel questioned Versfeld’s objectivity, especially given Versfeld testified about his visit with Pistorius in May, after Pistorius testified during the trial.
Later, an acoustics expert testified after a 45-minute tea break and a 20-minute discussion about a missing extension cord from Pistorius’ bedroom.
Electrical engineer Ivan Lin said that screams from Pistorius’ bedroom or bathroom likely would not have been audible or intelligible from neighbors’ bedrooms 177m away. Earlier in the trial, neighbors from distances up to 177m away testified to hearing screams, some saying women’s screams, the night of the shooting.
Pistorius’ trial is expected to resume at 3:30 a.m. ET on Tuesday.
Jul 21, 2014, 6:09 PM EDT
U.S. stars would not make the Olympic field if it was determined today.
Jul 21, 2014, 3:13 PM EDT
NCAA’s current lawsuits may cut funding.
Jul 21, 2014, 2:11 PM EDT
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Jul 21, 2014, 12:51 PM EDT
NCAA Player of the Year was tournament MVP.
Jul 21, 2014, 10:43 AM EDT
Extraordinary men include war veterans, longtime NASA worker, Methodist minister.
Jul 21, 2014, 8:33 AM EDT
Kim Jin-sun had been the committee’s president since October 2011.
Jul 18, 2014, 4:15 PM EDT
U.S. sprinters shatter personal bests.
Jul 18, 2014, 3:09 PM EDT
U.S. Olympic flag bearer returned to the podium after missing medals at 2012 Olympics, 2013 Worlds.
Jul 18, 2014, 10:10 AM EDT
Ellard triple jumped at 1992 U.S. Olympic Trials.
Jul 17, 2014, 3:42 PM EDT
Multiple Owens biopics in the works.
Jul 17, 2014, 2:20 PM EDT
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Jul 17, 2014, 1:49 PM EDT
Sochi stars and a 12-time Olympic medalist were at Nokia Theater.
Jul 17, 2014, 11:57 AM EDT
Asbel Kiprop goes after 16-year-old mark in 1500m.
Jul 17, 2014, 10:53 AM EDT
Host countries aren’t assured spots in the Olympics anymore, and South Korea is ranked very low.
Jul 17, 2014, 9:45 AM EDT
Sweeney, a Purple Heart recipient, scored the gold-winning goal in Sochi.
Jul 16, 2014, 8:46 PM EDT
Douglas previously said she hoped to return to competition in August.
Jul 16, 2014, 1:56 PM EDT
Friends meet for exhibition two miles above sea level.
Jul 16, 2014, 12:10 PM EDT
Zhang retired, but Bartholomay will skate on.
Jul 16, 2014, 11:44 AM EDT
Catanzaro is the first woman to accomplish the feat.
Jul 16, 2014, 10:53 AM EDT
Sullivan made three Olympic Teams, won three Olympic medals.
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