REA­SONS OS­CAR SHOULD GO FREE

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3Pis­to­rius’ de­ci­sion to grant an on-cam­era in­ter­view with the UK’s ITV for an up­com­ing doc­u­men­tary could hurt him in sen­tenc­ing. Nel called the de­ci­sion to speak on TV while re­fus­ing to dis­close his ver­sion of events in court “dis­re­spect­ful to the court, and dis­re­spect­ful to the vic­tims”. Louw said it wasn’t very wise of Pis­to­rius to give that in­ter­view.

1OSCAR ON HIS STUMPS Al­though South Africa does not have a jury sys­tem, the de­fence team ap­pear to be hop­ing that the im­age of Pis­to­rius walk­ing un­steadily on his stumps com­bined with the pub­lic scru­tiny of the trial will sway Judge Masipa to­wards be­ing le­nient. Pis­to­rius took a few steps around the court as Roux painted a pic­ture of the psychological state of his client: “This is the per­son, its three in the morn­ing, he is on his stumps. He suf­fers from an anx­i­ety dis­or­der.”

Louw said de­spite these tac­tics be­ing some­what ma­nip­u­la­tive, Masipa is likely to take Pis­to­rius’ dis­abil­ity into ac­count. “It’s ob­vi­ously a shock tac­tic to get a lesser sen­tence.” OS­CAR IS A ‘BRO­KEN MAN’

Psy­chol­o­gist Jonathan Scholtz told the court Pis­to­rius was still on med­i­ca­tion for post­trau­matic stress dis­or­der and de­pres­sion, and that he also suf­fers from anx­i­ety. Scholtz rec­om­mended Pis­to­rius be hos­pi­talised rather than sent to jail. “If he was my pa­tient in pri­vate prac­tice, I would ad­mit him to hospi­tal,” Scholtz said. RET­RI­BU­TION WON’T SERVE THE COM­MU­NITY OR THE STEENKAMPS

In­creas­ingly, the law is look­ing for so­lu­tions that fo­cus on restora­tive justice rather than merely ret­ri­bu­tion. Roux fo­cused heav­ily on this ap­proach, telling the court that Pis­to­rius has al­ready been de­terred from com­mit­ting a sim­i­lar crime again, and there would be no pur­pose served in send­ing him back to jail.

Scholtz said Pis­to­rius had al­ready suf­fered sev­eral “hu­mil­i­at­ing and hurt­ful” ex­pe­ri­ences in pri­son.

OS­CAR HAS AL­READY LOST HIS CA­REER

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Ger­rie Nel

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