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Oscar Pistorius, Olympic Runner Convicted of Murder, Is Up for Parole

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JOHANNESBURG — Oscar Pistorius, the double-amputee Olympic sprinter who garnered world headlines after killing his girlfriend in 2013, could quickly be paroled from jail, South African corrections officers stated Monday.

Mr. Pistorius shot his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, by a locked rest room door in February 2013. He claimed that her dying was an accident, and that he had fired his gun within the perception that an intruder had entered his upscale residence in a Pretoria suburb.

He was convicted of manslaughter — later upgraded to homicide — and sentenced to fifteen years. And on Monday, the Department of Correctional Services stated Mr. Pistorius, 34, had served half his sentence, making him mechanically eligible for parole below South African regulation.

But first Mr. Pistorius should face his sufferer’s dad and mom as half of the parole-consideration course of — a prospect they sounded distressed by on Monday. The dad and mom are “shocked and surprised” at having to think about the athlete’s freedom before they anticipated, a lawyer for the household stated.

At one level, Mr. Pistorius was not deemed eligible for parole till March 2023, however his lawyer requested South Africa’s Supreme Court of Appeal to consider the greater than 500 days the athlete had already served in jail after his preliminary conviction for manslaughter.

Mr. Pistorius was at first sentenced to 5 years in jail on that conviction in 2014, however after prosecutors challenged the decision, the Supreme Court of Appeal changed it with a discovering of homicide. The trial decide raised his sentence to 6 years, however then prosecutors appealed that, too, describing the penalty as “shockingly too lenient” for homicide.

In 2017, the Supreme Court of Appeal greater than doubled the sentence, to fifteen years, the minimal for homicide in South Africa.

Prison has “taken its toll” on the celeb athlete as soon as nicknamed the Blade Runner, stated Julian Knight, Mr. Pistorius’ lawyer. “When Oscar is eventually released on parole, I don’t think he’ll be anywhere like the Oscar that went into prison,” Mr. Knight stated.

Mr. Pistorius, whose legs have been amputated under the knees when he was an toddler, gained worldwide fame by competing at a excessive degree, utilizing carbon fiber prosthetic blades, and gained a number of gold medals in Paralympic Games. After a prolonged battle with sporting authorities he gained the best to compete in opposition to able-bodied athletes and ran within the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, however didn’t win any medals.

Mr. Pistorius, who has been serving his sentence on the Atteridgeville Correctional Centre in Pretoria, has already attended a number of rehabilitation packages to arrange for parole, a correctional providers division spokesman stated.

He may even bear psychological evaluations and meet with a social employee and spiritual chief earlier than a mediated “victim-offender” dialogue along with his sufferer’s dad and mom, June and Barry Steenkamp. Only then will a parole board contemplate his case.

The Steenkamps are girding themselves to satisfy with their daughter’s killer, although they’ll decline to take action. The authorities have already contacted the household to start the method.

Ms. Steenkamp has publicly stated her Christian religion compels her to forgive Mr. Pistorius. Her husband was described as not having discovered the identical closure.

“He’s always said he wants that meeting, because he’s got questions,” stated Tania Koen, the Steenkamp’s