UPDATE: Oscar Pistorius has now finally been sentenced by Judge Masipa to five years in prison for the murder of Reeva Steenkamp and a three year suspended sentence for firearms offences after careful consideration.
Due to the nature of the crime Judge Masipa decided that both a suspended sentence and house arrest would not be an appropriate punishment for Pistorius and charged him with culpable homicide and a five year sentence. However, Prosecutor Gerrie Nell spoke up in regards to the possession of firearms and Judge Masipa then proceeded to sentence Pistorius to another three years jail sentence, wholly suspended for five years. He was then taken below to a cell where he will be fingerprinted and transferred as it’s likely he will spend his sentence in the Kgosi Mampuru II prison in Pretoria.
South African legal experts also stated that house arrest is possible in the near future after he has served at least one sixth of his sentence.
WITH the fateful day upon him, Oscar Pistorius will learn his sentencing for the culpable homicide of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in February 2013.
Although the judge acquitted him of first and second degree murder, culpable homicide can still carry a sentence of up to 10 years in prison.
Ahead of sentencing, the athlete’s sister Aimee told a South African television station “we could never understand or even attempt to comprehend” what Reeva’s parents are going through.
In the interview she said: “It’s an impossible situation and we could never understand, but it’s important for us that they know she was very much cared for and loved and accepted as part of our family in the short time she was with us.
“If you knew Reeva, you didn’t need to know her for very long for her to just creep into your heart.”
The verdict of culpable homicide has left the judge to consider different ranges of possible sentences.
Pistorius could be jailed, handed a suspended sentence, given correctional supervision or fined after being found guilty of culpable homicide.
Other punishments include correctional supervision (including house arrest), a fine, or a combination of these options.
He will also face a sentence for illegally discharging a firearm in Tasha’s restaurant in Pretoria and firing at a traffic light.
Protesters outside the courtroom think the sentence will be too lenient, with Reeva’s cousin, Kim Martin, announcing that Pistorius needed to “pay for what he’s done” and warned a lenient ruling would send the wrong message to society.
More to follow….