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Oscar Pistorius: Reeva wouldn’t want me to waste my life in jail

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Amy Lewis
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Oscar Pistorius has given his first televised interview since killing girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in 2013, just days before he is due to be sentenced for murder by a South African court.

Steenkamp was found dead at Pistorius' gated home in the early hours of Valentine's Day, having been shot four times by Pistorius, her boyfriend of four months.

Along with giving a frank account of what happened on the night of the shooting, the athlete discusses how he has struggled to deal with the accusations, and now legal conviction, of murder, maintaining that he thought there was an intruder in the house.

In a clip released today, Pistorius is seen telling ITV that he doesn’t want to go back to jail, and believes that Steenkamp wouldn’t want him to spend a life behind bars either.

“I don’t want to go back to jail. I don’t want to have to waste my life sitting there,” he is seen telling the interviewer.

“If I was afforded the opportunity of redemption I would like to help the less fortunate, like I have in my past. I would like to believe that if Reeva could look down upon me, she would want me to live that life.”

Oscar Pistorius

Oscar Pistorius: The Interview is due to be shown on ITV on Friday, and was filmed at Pistorious’ uncle’s house, where the athlete has been staying on house arrest ahead of his sentencing on 7 July.

Pistorius was initially charged with culpable homicide in 2014, and served a fifth of his sentence in jail, before the conviction was overturned by South Africa’s supreme court following an appeal from the state prosecution.

The conviction has now been increased to murder, for which the minimum sentence in South Africa is 15 years.

Oscar Pistorius

Recounting the events of the tragic night, Pistorius is seen crying as he tells ITV about the moment he found Steenkamp’s body in the bathroom, along with graphic detail about the scene.

“I opened the toilet door and immediately when I saw Reeva she was over the toilet, she had slumped over the toilet. At that point I knew I had killed her, I knew she was dead. I went down onto my knees and pulled her onto me,” he says.

“I just see blood and it’s just blood everywhere ... So much blood! I try and pick her up. I’m trying to pick her up but there’s so much blood I can’t stand up.”

Though Pistorius has maintained that he believed Steenkamp was sleeping in the bed next to him at the time of the shooting, the prosecution has alleged that he murdered his girlfriend following a jealous argument over an ex-boyfriend.

They claim Steenkamp had barricaded herself in the bathroom following the row, before Pistoruis tried the break down the door with a cricket bat, later reaching for his 9mm firearm.

The athlete declined to give evidence at his sentencing hearing last week, with his defence team telling the court that he is suffering from anxiety and depression.

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Amy Lewis

Amy Lewis is a freelance writer and editor, a lover of strong tea, equally strong eyebrows, a collector of facial oils and a cat meme enthusiast. She covers everything from beauty and fashion to feminism and travel.

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