Citizen Reporter
2 minute read
9 Apr 2018
3:25 pm

Oscar Pistorius denied leave to appeal in Constitutional Court

Citizen Reporter

The former Paralympian has little choice now but to see out the remainder of his sentence and hope for early parole.

25 Mar 2014, Pretoria, Tshwane, South Africa --- Pretoria, South Africa. 25th March 2014 -- Oscar Pistorius pictured arriving for trial day 15 of his murder trial in the killing of his girlfriend. The trial was adjourned until Friday 28th March, 2014 for the defense to finalize its consultation with its witnesses. -- Oscar Pistorius' murder trial has been adjourned until Friday 28th March, 2014 for the defense to finalize its consultation with its witnesses as the state confirmed that is is satisfied with the witnesses it already presented at the trial. --- Image by © Frans Sello waga Machate/Demotix/Corbis

It has come to light that the Constitutional Court does not feel former Paralympian Oscar Pistorius has any chance of success in appealing his sentence for the 2013 murder of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, primarily because it is apparently not a constitutional matter.

News24 reports that the court dismissed his application for leave to appeal the 13 years he was given by the Supreme Court of Appeal.

The website quotes the order of the court, dated March 28: “The Constitutional Court has considered the application for condonation and leave to appeal. It has concluded that the application for condonation should be granted but that the application for leave to appeal should be dismissed as it does not engage this court’s jurisdiction.”

In November last year, the Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein’s Judge Willie Seriti said Pistorius should have been sentenced to 15 years’ imprisonment (the maximum sentence for murder that was not premeditated), but the court had taken into account the time he had already served.

The SCA therefore substituted his 6-year prison sentence with one of 13 years and five months.

Judge Thokozile Masipa initially convicted Pistorius in the High Court in Pretoria on a charge of culpable homicide for shooting Reeva to death behind a locked toilet door at his house in the east of Pretoria on Valentine’s day 2013.

She sentenced him in 2013 to five years’ imprisonment, but the state appealed against his culpable homicide conviction.

The SCA in 2016 set aside his conviction and found him guilty of murder, ruling that he should have and had foreseen that he could kill whoever was behind the toilet door.

Judge Masipa thereafter re-sentenced Pistorius to six years’ imprisonment, finding that there were substantial and compelling circumstances to deviate from the prescribed 15-year sentence.

The state appealed again, arguing that the sentence was too lenient for murder, and would set an unacceptable precedent.

Pistorius has always maintained that he thought there was an intruder when he fired four shots at the toilet door and that Reeva’s death was a tragic accident. He said he was in a state of panic as he was not wearing his prosthesis, felt vulnerable and wanted to protect himself and Reeva.

The state tried its best to prove that Pistorius had intentionally shot Reeva after and argument, but could never succeed with this attempt.

Reeva’s parents, Barry and June Steenkamp, have stated openly that they did not believe Pistorius’ version of how their daughter was killed.