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  1. #81
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    It's amazing what people think they can get away with though, and I guess in many cases, do get away with.

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    Quote Originally Posted by orbitz View Post
    ^^ I was only guessing for someone in Pistorius's position. If he had planned the murder then he must have had also thought about the consequence of its aftermath; He's only 26 and has looks, fame, money, popularity, etc. It's going to be hell giving all of that up for a lifetime in prison. So if the murder was premeditated, I think someone like him would've chosen suicide over going to prison.
    Unless he thought he could make it look like an accident...


    Well, it looks bad for him, but we will see what court have to say.

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    I have no idea what the concept of premeditated murder involves in South Africa - but in this case, the fact he had weapons ready for use and went to the trouble of shooting through a locked door, after he'd already shot once and had the time to rethink, could well be enough to fit the description.
    They wouldn't have gone for that charge if they felt they had no chance of getting a conviction.

  4. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by orbitz View Post
    ^^ I was only guessing for someone in Pistorius's position. If he had planned the murder then he must have had also thought about the consequence of its aftermath; He's only 26 and has looks, fame, money, popularity, etc. It's going to be hell giving all of that up for a lifetime in prison. So if the murder was premeditated, I think someone like him would've chosen suicide over going to prison.
    Or perhaps his ego is so huge that he thought he could get away with anything, and those thoughts never crossed his mind in the first place. Whenever I hear of domestic murders, I always want to ask the murderer: "Just who do you think you are? You really think this life belonged to you???!"

    In any case, where I live, if a homicide it isn't a premedited murder, it could also be a non premedited murder, which is worse than involuntary manslaughter.

    Quote Originally Posted by millyskate View Post
    I have no idea what the concept of premeditated murder involves in South Africa - but in this case, the fact he had weapons ready for use and went to the trouble of shooting through a locked door, after he'd already shot once and had the time to rethink, could well be enough to fit the description.
    That's a possibility, and/or perhaps what had happened a few hours earlier gave them a clue, too.

  5. #85

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    I wonder why the authorities are going after the premeditated murder charge instead of something like involuntary manslaughter, for example. I think it was a crime of passion that happened in an instance of rage and not something that he had planned to do, since early reports said that a panicked Pistorius tried to revive Steenkamp after the shooting.
    It depends on the definition of premeditated murder in the jurisdiction they're in. In the US, definitions vary even from state to state.

    Can any South Africans shed some light on South African legal terms?

    The more I read about Reeva, the more I like her. Just from her modeling, she could have made a fortune large enough to fund her the rest of her life. But rather than resting on her looks, she graduated in the top 10% of her law school class and was an advocate for rape victims. I love this photo of her.

  6. #86
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    So if she was indeed wearing her nightgown, indicating she was in the house and not entering it (so no surprise and confusion with a burglar is likely) and was locked in the bathroom indicated she was trying to save herself. And if there was a bloody bat and she had a head injury that matched the bat, I think this case is open and shut.

    I really don't see what the defense can do outside of a Twinkie defense (does that work in South Africa?) or an insanity plea.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

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    A South African newspaper report:

    Exclusive – The case against Oscar

    A bloodied cricket bat is the central piece of evidence in the unfolding murder investigation into ReevaSteenkamp’s death.

    City Press can reveal that police are investigating different scenarios involving the bat – one of which is that her boyfriend, Olympic hero Oscar Pistorius, used it to viciously assault her.

    The police are also investigating two more possibilities: that Steenkamp may have used the bat in self-defence, or that Pistorius used it to break down the toilet door behind which Steenkamp was hiding from him.

    We can further reveal that police specifically requested that Pistorius’ blood be tested for drugs and steroids.

    Steenkamp’s skull was “crushed” and police tests on the cricket bat and her body will reveal if the injuries were caused by blows to the back of her head.

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    I'm having a difficult time wrapping my head around the premeditated part; to me, a scenario where he was loaded up on drugs and/or alcohol and an argument got out of control seems more likely.

    Not that the two are mutually exclusive; and part of me does not want to think that Pistorius is capable of premeditated murder, so I realize this post is neither rational or logical.

  9. #89
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    It would all depend on the half-life of the drugs/alcohol that he presumably had in his system. By the time they got to testing, some of them may have gone down to undetectable levels or trace amounts. Depends what it is they are looking for.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

  10. #90
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    Not sure why people think drugs/alcohol are necessary for this to have happened.

  11. #91
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jenny View Post
    Not sure why people think drugs/alcohol are necessary for this to have happened.
    No one is saying that. My post was based on the report that he was being tested.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

  12. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    No one is saying that. My post was based on the report that he was being tested.
    Several other posts have suggested it, including the one right before yours by Wiery.

  13. #93
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jenny View Post
    Not sure why people think drugs/alcohol are necessary for this to have happened.
    Necessary, no, but it would certainly help explain how a seemingly otherwise rational person could have become so enraged as to bludgeon someone (as alleged) and then proceed to shoot her several times after she had apparently tried to barricade herself in the bathroom (again, as alleged). Especially when the victim had just been posting tweets that suggest that they had a loving relationship.
    "I miss footwork that has any kind of a discernible pattern. The goal of a step sequence should not be for a skater to show the same ice coverage as a Zamboni and take about as much time as an ice resurface. " ~ Zemgirl, reflecting on a pre-IJS straight line sequence

  14. #94
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    Re: why they wouldn't use involuntary manslaughter instead of culpable homicide as a charge - from what I can see in a brief review of South African criminal law, the elements of involuntary manslaughter are death caused by the perpetrating of an event that a reasonable person would be diligent/not neglectful enough to commit, and the rest are considered pure accidents or culpable homicide (murder), which includes premeditation and those where people are active in committing the act but perhaps not thinking of the full circumstance ("voluntary" as opposed to "involuntary").

    There is nothing in between in South African law which formally contemplates extreme emotional states, and as such the part-defence of provocation (which exists in Canada, not sure about elsewhere) which can mitigate a charge of murder to manslaughter (because the intent component for a murder is theoretically not formable when one is in an uncontrollable rage) may be raised in court but again, it would result in a conviction on the lesser as opposed to the greater charge.

    Also, with regards to why someone wouldn't "commit suicide" in this event or that it was more a "crime of passion" in Pistorius's position, I suspect more details of the history between Steenkamp and Pistorius will come out illustrating a greater link between this incident and domestic violence. Perpetrators of domestic violence, psychologically, have an overwhelming control view of such relationship, and will often go to extremes to make sure that their target does not escape them. This can degenerate to publicly exhibiting such control, because they have taken the psychological mindset that they continually need to exhibit such control in order to dictate to their target and others who may intercede that this is the relationship. Victims, on the other hand, start to believe they may actually deserve the situation and empathize more with the perceived plight of the perpetrator than their own - the term battered women's syndrome defines the victim's persona but I don't know its respective term on the perpetrator's part.

    Regardless, for a perpetrator, the cycle and element of viewing control as such means that even if they are going to be found in public, it's better that they exhibit the finite element of control (which may include inflicting death) rather than what they may perceive as worse - the loss of control. I personally think going into their head and wondering "why didn't they do this or that" fairly senseless because you're not in the head of a person who is thinking rationally - you're in the head of a psychopath most often. A psychopath who knows what he is doing and justifies it to himself as needing to maintain control. And seeing what has happened in terms of lack of prosecuted domestic violence cases, Pistorius may also have seen this as something he could potentially evade.

    Finally, I think maybe the alcohol and drug screen is to determine whether or not these elements were in Pistorius' system before he committed the murder. If there are unmetabolized elements in the amount of time, it would at least cast severe doubt on an intoxication/"roid rage" defense. I do wonder if these defenses exist in South Africa, and if they decide to try and bring in the domestic violence history, how the court will interpret the evidence as a whole to determine what, if any, conviction should be laid.

  15. #95
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    Quote Originally Posted by BittyBug View Post
    Especially when the victim had just been posting tweets that suggest that they had a loving relationship.
    Sadly she would not be the first person to say they had a great relationship when the reality was otherwise. If there was a history of abuse - and certainly neighbours and police seem to think that something was going on there - it's not unreasonable to imagine that she was too shamed to admit it to anyone, especially when the man in question is a national hero.

  16. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by BittyBug View Post
    Necessary, no, but it would certainly help explain how a seemingly otherwise rational person could have become so enraged as to bludgeon someone (as alleged) and then proceed to shoot her several times after she had apparently tried to barricade herself in the bathroom (again, as alleged). Especially when the victim had just been posting tweets that suggest that they had a loving relationship.
    Love, for some people, involves exhibiting control over their partner. He could have given her flowers or jewelry at other times. It's actually part of the domestic abuse cycle.

    But even most abusers don't go to the level he allegedly did.

    As for conviction, a poster on another forum I go to is from South Africa and he says the maximum sentence anyone ever gets is 10 years. Even for murder. (He said there was a recent case of child rape where the judge actually reduced the sentence to 8 years and there was huge commotion over that.) There is no death penalty. So this necessarily wouldn't ruin Pistorius's life, although a guilty verdict would destroy everything he's done, now and in the future.

  17. #97

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    Quote Originally Posted by Anita18 View Post
    As for conviction, a poster on another forum I go to is from South Africa and he says the maximum sentence anyone gets is 10 years. Even for murder. So this necessarily wouldn't ruin Pistorius's life, although a guilty verdict would destroy everything he's done, now and in the future.
    This article says that it's 20 years minimum, up to life. It doesn't elaborate on how South Africa handles parole, though. Perhaps the poster to the forum you read is in another part of South Africa, just as different states in the US have different sentencing guidelines?

  18. #98

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jenny View Post
    Not sure why people think drugs/alcohol are necessary for this to have happened.
    No necessary at all, it's just that when I worked in the emergency room, I observed that many issues of domestic violence and murder involved drugs and/or alcohol. In my experience, intoxication tends to bring out the worst in many people. Not always though; some people are evil and do horrible things while sober.

  19. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zemgirl View Post
    It can happen if you believe you are at risk, and in a place with a high crime rate, I can see how someone would believe that.
    But that's why I said "if what is reported here is true." Sorry about the link; I didn't have to register for it . I can see a few scenarios where someone could legitimately shoot a non-intruder thinking the person was an intruder, but I would think such situations would be very, very rare.

    Quote Originally Posted by orbitz View Post
    I wonder why the authorities are going after the premeditated murder charge instead of something like involuntary manslaughter, for example.
    I have no idea, but I wonder if it is because he chased her. It's one thing to attack someone in a rage. It's another to attack a person, then get a gun and go after the person when that person runs.

    It depends on how South Africa defines premeditated murder. But it seems to me that if someone tries to hide from you and you make the choice to get a gun and go after that person, you have chosen to kill. Why else would you get a gun first? Even if you are in a rage, once the person is out of reach, you have the opportunity to back down and get control of yourself.

    The police may also believe that he shot her deliberately because he was trying to cover up hitting her with a cricket bat (if that's what he did). He could have realized that she was badly injured, wondered how he was going to be able to cover that up, and deliberately killed her, thinking he could pass it off as an accident. That wouldn't be rational, given the circumstances, but he wouldn't be the first to come up with an obviously stupid story to cover up a murder.

    I watch way too much ID.

    Quote Originally Posted by Choupette View Post
    Or perhaps his ego is so huge that he thought he could get away with anything
    I think all of that is true, but I also think that it is human nature for people to try to get away with things when they get caught and I don't think most people are rational or realistic about evaluating their odds of getting away with murder in the immediate aftermath. I would think in cases like this, there would be a lot of denial going on, too--I didn't mean it! I really didn't! He may even have convinced himself, at least on the surface, that it was an accident. Our minds rewrite events to shield us.
    "The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources."-- Albert Einstein.

  20. #100
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gazpacho View Post
    This article says that it's 20 years minimum, up to life. It doesn't elaborate on how South Africa handles parole, though. Perhaps the poster to the forum you read is in another part of South Africa, just as different states in the US have different sentencing guidelines?
    Very possible.

    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    I have no idea, but I wonder if it is because he chased her. It's one thing to attack someone in a rage. It's another to attack a person, then get a gun and go after the person when that person runs.

    It depends on how South Africa defines premeditated murder. But it seems to me that if someone tries to hide from you and you make the choice to get a gun and go after that person, you have chosen to kill. Why else would you get a gun first? Even if you are in a rage, once the person is out of reach, you have the opportunity to back down and get control of yourself.

    The police may also believe that he shot her deliberately because he was trying to cover up hitting her with a cricket bat (if that's what he did). He could have realized that she was badly injured, wondered how he was going to be able to cover that up, and deliberately killed her, thinking he could pass it off as an accident. That wouldn't be rational, given the circumstances, but he wouldn't be the first to come up with an obviously stupid story to cover up a murder.

    I watch way too much ID.
    Perhaps. All of it's completely illogical though, at least to most of society. Someone who acts that seriously, that rashly, is definitely a danger to society.

    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    I think all of that is true, but I also think that it is human nature for people to try to get away with things when they get caught and I don't think most people are rational or realistic about evaluating their odds of getting away with murder in the immediate aftermath. I would think in cases like this, there would be a lot of denial going on, too--I didn't mean it! I really didn't! He may even have convinced himself, at least on the surface, that it was an accident. Our minds rewrite events to shield us.
    They do, but again, someone who does it to the level that he did, is a danger to society.

    I don't think you're defending him, though. We're all just trying to find answers to this, because the very circumstances just boggle the mind.

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