After Oscar Pistorius spent more than a week in jail without bail following the shooting of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, the South African sprinter was granted bail of about $112,000 Friday on the premeditated murder charge brought against him.
Prosecutors said they considered Pistorius a flight risk, and urged the court to keep him in custody without bail. But South African Magistrate Desmond Nair said the group didn’t provide enough evidence to hold him.
“It is practically impossible for the state, within the matter of a week, to have all the pieces of the puzzle,” Nair decided. “The defense has failed to show this court that there is a weakness in the [state’s] case.
“The state cannot equally show that the state case is so strong and water tight that the applicant cannot come to the conclusion that he needs to flee and avoid the charge.”
The prosecution offered that Pistorius and Steenkamp were arguing Feb. 14, and that Pistorius knew she was in the bathroom when he shot her through the door. But Pistorius wrote in a statement Tuesday that he heard a noise in the bathroom that he thought was an intruder, grabbed his gun, and shot four times. Only after he had fired did he considered it might have been Steenkamp. He saw he had shot her, called paramedics, and carried her downstairs for help, where she died in his arms.
Pistorius openly wept in court while his statement was read, and according to his uncle Andrew, the sprinter was unable to eat for days, and had been meeting with his siblings and reading his Bible.
The trial was adjourned to June 4. The court has ordered that Pistorius relinquish his passports and firearms, stay away from his home, and abstain from drugs and alcohol. The Olympian was also told that he may not leave Pretoria without official permission.