Once revered as the first amputee sprinter to compete in the Olympics, Oscar Pistorius has been serving time for the murder of his girlfriend, Reeva Steencamp. His case has been through a number of twists and turns, but in one final twist, Pistorius’ prison sentence has been more than doubled by a South African court.
Oscar Pistorius’ Trial and Sentencing
After a grueling trial, Oscar Pistorius was found guilty in 2014 of culpable homicide, the equivalent of manslaughter in the U.S. He had shot Steenkamp four times through a bathroom door in their shared home.
Pistorius maintained during the entire trial that he thought Steenkamp was a burglar. The judge handed down a verdict of culpable homicide as opposed to murder.
Prosecutors were unable to prove the murder was premeditated. Meanwhile, defense lawyers were unable to dissuade the judge from the notion that Pistorius was going to shoot and kill whoever was behind the bathroom door.
Pistorius got five years and began serving his sentence in October 2014. This was seen as a slap in the face by Steencamp’s family.
Unhappy prosecutors set out to change the verdict from culpable homicide to murder. They were successful: in 2015, the appeal court found Pistorius guilty of murder and sentenced him to six years in prison.
Oscar Pistorius Sees Murder Sentence Doubled
Prosecutors then also appealed this sentence. As a result, on November 24, 2017, Pistorius’ sentence was more than doubled to 13 years and five months (with time served). Pistorius may not be released from prison until 2030.
The athlete is serving his sentence at Atteridgeville Correctional Centre, but it only houses those serving up to six years. It’s expected that he’ll be moved to the Kgosi Mampuru II prison to serve out his extended sentence.
This final sentencing should bring an end to Oscar Pistorius’ court proceedings, as his appeal of the murder conviction last year failed.