As the Oscar Pistorius murder trial enters a new crucial phase with the opening of the defence case, the South African Paralympic broke down in court today while apologizing to the family of his late girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp whom he shot dead last year.
The Olympic runner took to the witness stand today to give his account of what happened the night he shot and killed his model girlfriend.
In what took the central part of his defence, Pistorius told Steenkamp’s family, “there hasn’t been a moment since this tragedy happened that I haven’t thought about your family.”
“I wake up every morning and you’re the first people I think of, the first people I pray for. I was only trying to protect Reeva.”
In his testimony, Pistorius said he is now constantly on antidepressant medicine, has trouble sleeping, and has suffered panic attacks since he killed Steenkamp. He described extensively how he has nightmares that cause him to wake up to the “smell of blood.”
The athlete is charged with premeditated murder for Steenkamp’s death with prosecutors saying he deliberately shot at his girlfriend four times through the door in his bathroom on Valentine’s Day last year.
Meanwhile, Pistorius, who denied the allegation, says he mistook her for an intruder.