Oscar Pistorius has been charged with the murder of his model girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, after shooting her four times early this morning in South Africa when he mistook her for a burglar. The story Pistorius is pushing: Steenkamp was setting up a Valentine’s Day surprise, and he thought she was a burglar.
According to this report from the BBC, police are surprised to hear that angle.
They added that there had been previous incidents at the address and described them as “allegations of a domestic nature”. Police also said that they had been interviewing witnesses and that they would oppose any bail application.
Pistorius – a gun enthusiast, as this New York Times profile from 2012 notes – lives in one of the safest areas of South Africa, a country with a disturbingly high murder rate. It’s a veritable fortress.
As news slowly trickles out of South Africa, surely this story will get some pickup: Back in November, allegedly, Pistorius threatened to break a man’s legs over a woman. But the woman was not Reeva Steenkamp.
[Aside: I use allegedly because the story is so absurd, I emailed the author of that linked piece to confirm whether or not it was fact and not humor or based on rumors. She wrote back quickly that yes, the story did happen and there were charges.]
Oscar Pistorius returned from the London Olympic games to find that his girlfriend had allegedly cheated on him. Enraged by jealousy, he allegedly threatened to break the legs of the other man involved.
The threats reportedly became so intense that a charge of defamation was laid against the man known as Blade Runner. He in turn has laid a charge of intimidation with the Hawks against former soccer player and Supersport presenter Marc Batchelor, a friend of the man he accuses of being involved with his girlfriend.
The whole saga started when Pistorius allegedly confronted coal mining millionaire and Clifton Shores TV producer Quinton van der Burgh in a VIP room at the Kyalami racetrack soon after he returned from the Olympics.
Pistorius was said to be furious about the alleged infidelity of an unnamed 18-year-old woman with Van der Burgh while he was in London.
The date on that is November (the story got major pickup) – just four months ago. Reeva Steenkamp was a law school graduate and 29 years old. So was Pistorius cheating on her? Clearly, Steenkamp has recently been dating Pistorius – this tweet from February 13th is chilling:
— Reeva Steenkamp (@reevasteenkamp) February 13, 2013
So what’s the backstory on this 18-year-old and Pistorius? Will Quinton van der Burgh come forward and talk about this incident?
What a shocking development for a man who was hailed as a hero in 2012 for becoming the first double-amputee track athlete to compete in the Olympics. According to the AP, Pistorius had both legs “amputated below the knee before his first birthday because of a congenital condition.”