Does the SCA believe that Judge Masipa got it wrong? Seven points they've raised
Bloemfontein - Judge Eric Leach has raised doubt over Oscar Pistorius's intention in firing the shots that killed Reeva Steenkamp, saying, the issue at hand is not whether Reeva was behind the door, but rather that Mr. Pistorius knew there was a definitely a person in the toilet that he fired into and that his action in shooting would see the demise of that person.
Questions and statements asked by the judges (not verbatim):
1. Did Mr. Pistorius genuinely believe that he was entitled to shoot through the toilet door?
2. Mr. Pistorius did not know if a 12 year-old child or a person with a machine gun was behind the door.
3. Judge Thokozile Masipa’s analysis of dolus eventualis seems wrong.
4. Mr. Pistorius was familiar with firearms and used ammunition he knew did great damage to body tissue.
5. The court found that Mr. Pistorius was a poor witness, but then entertained the idea that Mr. Pistorius truly believed his life was in danger.
6. If a person fires four shots through a door, that person must know that he or she will kill somebody.
7. Was there any other evidence, apart from the noise Mr. Pistorius heard in the bathroom, that gave him an indication that his life was in danger?
Today, the Supreme Court of Appeal is hearing the State's case that Judge Thokozile Masipa incorrectly applied the law of murder when she ruled that Oscar Pistorius was guilty of a culpable homicide and not murder.
The five appeal court judges -- Judge President Lex Mpati, Judge Nonkosi Mhlantla, Judge Eric Leach, Judge Steven Majiedt and acting Judge Elizabeth Baartman -- are expected to hear submissions on the application of the law and not the facts of the case which lead to Mr. Pistorius's original conviction and sentencing. In reaching a decision about Judge Masipa's ruling, the SCA will revisit aspects of testimony from the trial.
The State is arguing that Mr. Pistorius, by way of firing his gun four times through a closed door, would result in the death of the person behind the door.
Mr. Pistorius's defense, lead by Barry Roux, maintains that the athlete genuinely believed that his life was in danger when he fired the shots.
Watch a live stream of the hearing in the video below.
Tags: Pistorius SCA Supreme Court of Appeal Judge President Lex Mpati Judge Nonkosi Mhlantla Judge Eric Leach Judge Steven Majiedt acting Judge Elizabeth Baartman dolus eventualis pistorius newsful pistorius