Pistorius Sentencing Hearing Begins: Asks for Community Service

Fallen Paralympian athlete Oscar Pistorius' sentencing hearing started today. (Photo Credit: Google Images)

Fallen Paralympian athlete Oscar Pistorius’ sentencing hearing started today. (Photo Credit: Google Images)

The sentencing hearing for Paralympian runner Oscar Pistorius, who was convicted of culpable homicide last month, in the murder of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, has officially begun. According to Rebecca Davis of The Guardian, day one of the hearing involved

  • Pistorius’s defense team has called three out of four witnesses to testify in mitigation of sentencing: a psychologist, a Correctional Services social worker, and the athlete’s manager.
  • Social worker Joel Maringa told the court that he recommended Pistorius undergo house arrest for three years, with 16 hours of community service per month.
  • The state’s Gerrie Nel, who will be pushing for the most punitive possible jail term, called this suggestion “shockingly inappropriate”.
  • Pistorius’s psychologist and manager, respectively, have painted the picture of a broken man who is nonetheless humble and charitable, and who poses no danger to society.

Tomorrow, state prosecutor Gerrie Nel will have the opportunity to cross-examine Pistorius’ manager Pete Van Zyl.

The trial is not expected to last more than a week.

Read more at The Guardian. For a timeline of the events from the murder of Reeva Steenkamp to Pistorius’ sentencing, visit The Mail & Guardian (South Africa).

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