Oscar Pistorius guilty: Police release photos of Reeva Steenkamp killing scene after verdict

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The Independent Online

South African police have released a series of pictures taken at the scene of Reeva Steenkamp's death showing Oscar Pistorius covered in her blood.

The images were made available on Friday after Judge Thokozile Masipa convicted the athlete of culpable homicide and an unrelated charge of firing a gun in a restaurant.

She ruled that there was insufficient proof to convict him of premeditated murder and called the killing “negligent”, accepting Pistorius’ defence that he believed his girlfriend was an intruder.

The 29-year-old was shot four times through the toilet door, hitting her head, arm and hip in rapid succession.

Ms Steenkamp, a model and law graduate, died almost instantly of her injuries on Valentine’s Day 2013.

The police images showed the weapon Pistorius used - a Taurus 9mm pistol - lying on a towel on the bathroom floor.

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He was photographed immediately after the shooting with his prosthetic legs and pyjama shorts splattered with his girlfriend's blood, which covered the bathroom floor and puddled around the toilet.

The judge argued that Pistorius had chosen to arm himself with a gun and “clearly wanted to use the firearm” when there were other ways of dealing with the threat.

"All the accused had to do was pick up the phone and ring security, or run to the balcony and call for help,” she added.

Culpable homicide, the South African equivalent of manslaughter, carries a maximum 15 years in prison and Pistorius faces five more years for firing a gun in a restaurant in January 2013.

He was acquitted of another charge of discharging a firearm in a public place and possessing ammunition for an unlicensed firearm.