Witness: Pistorius prayed over his shot girlfriend

By The Associated Press | Posted - Mar. 6, 2014 at 11:01 a.m.



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PRETORIA, South Africa (AP) — A witness has testified that track star Oscar Pistorius prayed and wept as he knelt at the side of his girlfriend in the minutes after he fatally shot her.

The witness, a neighbor, says Pistorius struggled in vain to help Reeva Steenkamp breathe, by holding two fingers in her clenched mouth. Johan Stipp recalls Pistorius saying, "I shot her. I thought she was a burglar."

A few minutes later, he says, Pistorius went upstairs -- to the area where the shooting took place -- and then returned. He says he was concerned that the gun that was used in the shooting hadn't been recovered, and that Pistorius was going to harm himself.

Today's testimony in Pretoria was the first detailed, public description of the aftermath of the shooting. The South African Olympian is charged with premeditated murder. He has said he fired the shots through a bathroom door, thinking that there was an intruder there.

Three witnesses, including the neighbor who testified today, have now said they heard a woman screaming in Pistorius' home -- apparently boosting the prosecution's view that there had been a fight between the couple, and that Pistorius killed Steenkamp intentionally.

%@AP Links

191-a-10-(Dr. Johan Stipp, radiologist and neighbor of Oscar Pistorius, in court testimony)-"burglar and I shot her"-Dr. Johan Stipp, testifying at the trial of Oscar Pistorius, says the double-amputee runner was on his knees next to Reeva Steenkamp's body when he arrived at Pistorius' house. (6 Mar 2014)

<<CUT *191 (03/06/14)££ 00:10 "burglar and I shot her"

193-a-17-(Dr. Johan Stipp, radiologist and neighbor of Oscar Pistorius, in court testimony)-"just only live"-Dr. Johan Stipp, testifying at the trial of Oscar Pistorius, says a weeping Pistorius prayed over his girlfriend. (6 Mar 2014)

<<CUT *193 (03/06/14)££ 00:17 "just only live"

APPHOTO ASVZ110: Oscar Pistorius, center, leaves the high court after the fourth day of his trial in Pretoria, South Africa, Thursday, March 6, 2014. Pistorius is charged with murder in the shooting death of girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in the pre-dawn hours of Valentine's Day 2013. (AP Photo/Schalk van Zuydam) (6 Mar 2014)

<<APPHOTO ASVZ110 (03/06/14)££

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