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Oscar trial: defence wants to consult state psychiatrist

The State on Monday opposed a request by murder-accused Oscar Pistorius's defence to consult its psychiatrist.


“She was part of the panel which [observed Pistorius],” Barry Roux, for Pistorius, told the High Court in Pretoria.

Pistorius is charged with murdering his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day last year.

“We want to sit down with her and get some understanding. We’ve done that with Dr [Leon] Fine and we want to do the same with her.”

Roux was referring to State appointed psychiatrist Dr Carla Kotze.

Kotze and Fine, appointed by the defence, were part of the panel of three psychiatrists and one clinical psychologist who observed Pistorius for 30 days at Weskoppies Psychiatric Hospital following a court order.

Prosecutor Gerrie Nel objected to the request.

“They elected to appoint Dr Fine… why is there a need to consult with a different psychiatrist if you have your own?” Nel asked.

Roux said the defence wanted to consult Kotze before deciding whether to call one last witness.

Nel said he might call Kotze if the defence called Fine to testify, thus the athlete’s team could not consult her.

Roux said the defence would not call Fine and might not even call another witness.

“We’ve come to the end of the case. I am not calling Dr Fine,” Roux said.

Judge Thokozile Masipa adjourned the court for a few minutes.

Sapa

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