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Emotional Pistorius takes stand in own defense at murder trial

PRETORIA (Reuters) - South African Olympic and Paralympic track star Oscar Pistorius took the witness stand in his own defense at his murder trial on Monday, saying the shooting of his girlfriend had left him sleepless, terrified and plagued by nightmares. He also apologized to the mother of Reeva Steenkamp in the public gallery, saying he fired four shots through a toilet door in the early hours of Valentine's Day last year in the belief that he was defending her from an intruder.

Distraught Pistorius apologises from the witness stand

Oscar Pistorius fought through tears to apologise to the family of his slain girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, as he took the witness stand in his defence Monday. Stammering and with his jaw trembling, Pistorius told the court he did not intend to kill his 29-year-old lover on Valentine's Day last year. The Paralympic gold medallist is accused of premeditated murder, but claims he shot the model though a locked toilet door believing she was an intruder. "I want to take this opportunity to apologise to Mr and Mrs Steenkamp," he said, at times barely audible as he sobbed.

Pistorius defence calls expert as first witness

Lawyers for Oscar Pistorius called a forensic pathologist to the stand Monday to open his defence, which expected to see the star athlete also testify. Barry Roux called former state pathologist Jan Botha, who has carried out about 25,000 autopsies, to testify. Pistorius is expected to follow. bur/arb/yad

Crying Pistorius apologises to slain girlfriend's family

An emotional Oscar Pistorius took the stand as a witness in his defence Monday, fighting through tears to apologise to the family of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp for killing her on Valentine's Day a year ago. Pistorius, stammering and with his jaw trembling, began his testimony by saying Steenkamp "felt love" before he shot her dead in what prosecutors say was premeditated murder and he says was an accident. arb/yad

Pistorius to take stand as murder trial resumes

Star Paralympian Oscar Pistorius is expected to take the stand for the first time when his murder trial resumes on Monday under the glare of the world's media. As the defence opens its case, the 27-year-old Paralympian will give the court his first account of why he shot dead his model girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in the early hours of Valentine's Day in 2013. Pistorius has cut a lonely figure since his trial started on March 3, saying little since his "not guilty" plea besides the occasional "yes, milady" to Judge Thokozile Masipa.

Judge adjourns Pistorius trial to April 7

The judge overseeing Oscar Pistorius's murder trial on Friday adjourned the case for more than a week -- just before the star Paralympian was expected to take the stand for the first time -- because a senior court official was sick. "One of my assessors is not well," said Judge Thokozile Masipa. "I suggest that we postpone this matter to the 7th of April." Pistorius was expected to be called as a witness for the defence and later to face fierce cross-examination about how and why he killed his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine's Day a year ago.

Judge adjourns Pistorius trial to April 7

The judge overseeing Oscar Pistorius's murder trial on Friday adjourned the case for more than a week -- just before the star Paralympian was expected to take the stand for the first time -- because a senior court official was sick. "One of my assessors is not well," said Judge Thokozile Masipa. "I suggest that we postpone this matter to the 7th of April." Pistorius was expected to be called as a witness for the defence and later to face fierce cross-examination about how and why he killed his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine's Day a year ago.

Judge adjourns Pistorius trial until April 7

The judge overseeing Oscar Pistorius's murder trial adjourned the case on Friday -- the day the Paralympian was expected to take the stand for the first time -- because a top court official was sick. "One of my assessors is not well," said Judge Thokozile Masipa. "I suggest that we postpone this matter to the 7th of April." bur-arb/yad

Pistorius likely to testify first as defence opens

Oscar Pistorius is likely to take the stand Friday to testify how and why he shot dead his girlfriend, as defence lawyers open their case in the star Paralympian's murder trial. As the only surviving witness to the events inside his house in the early hours of February 14, 2013, Pistorius has the strongest word in his defence that he was in a loving relationship with Reeva Steenkamp and that her death was a tragic accident.

Prosecution wraps up case against Pistorius in murder trial

PRETORIA (Reuters) - State prosecutors wrapped up their case on Tuesday against South African track star Oscar Pistorius, who is accused of murdering his model girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine's Day last year. Prosecutors are seeking to prove that the Olympic and Paralympic athlete tried to kill Steenkamp deliberately by firing four rounds from a 9 mm pistol through a locked toilet door after a heated argument.
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