Oscar Pistorius was 'gun-toting', 'trigger-happy' and 'combustible', says Reeva Steenkamp's mother

June Steenkamp says she was 'unmoved' by athlete's apology

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The Independent Online

Reeva Steenkamp’s mother has claimed Oscar Pistorius would have killed someone 'sooner or later' had it not been her daughter.

June Steenkamp, 68, said the Paralympian, who was sentenced to five years in prison for culpable homicide, was “gun-toting”, “trigger-happy”, “jealous” and “combustible”.

Ms Steenkamp told The Times her and her husband Barry, 71, are haunted by a recurring image of their daughter on the night she died, “the vision of Reeva suffering this terrible trauma”.

In an extract from June Steenkamp's book, Reeva: A Mother's Story, published today in the Times Magazine, Mrs Steenkamp describes Pistorius as a "pathetic figure".

The extract focuses on the athlete's public apology during the televised trial.

"It was an extraordinary moment. You could cut the atmosphere in the courtroom with a knife: silence, but for the sound of journalists tapping on their screens. It put me in an awkward position,” Ms Steenkamp wrote.

"Why decide to say sorry to me in a televised trial in front of the whole world? I was unmoved by his apology. I felt if I appeared to be sorry for him at this stage of his trial on the charge of premeditated murder, it would in the eyes of others lessen the awfulness of what he had done."

Pistorius, who the court heard has no income and no property after selling it during the trial, was driven away in a police van with barred windows after his sentencing on Tuesday. The 27-year-old was also given a suspended three-year term for a firearms offence.

He is expected to be held in the hospital section of a prison in Pretoria.

Mrs Steenkamp's book is to be published on 6 November.