Oscar Pistorius, the Paralympic champion who shot and killed his girlfriend on Valentine’s Day, was the No. 1 athlete on Google worldwide trends in 2013.
Google trends are search topics with the largest increase in search volume since the previous period (presumably since the last year). Few Olympians were the most trending athletes in specific country data released, given the definition and that it’s a non-Olympic year.
Pistorius was the fifth-highest trending athlete in the U.S., behind No. 1 Aaron Hernandez, the jailed ex-New England Patriots tight end who pleaded not guilty in September to charges including the first-degree murder Odin Lloyd.
In 2012, NBA point guard Jeremy Lin was the highest trending athlete, ahead of Olympic champions swimmer Michael Phelps and gymnast McKayla Maroney, who were second and fourth.
The South African Pistorius, the first double amputee to run in the Olympics in 2012, will go on trial from March 3-20 in Pretoria after being charged with murdering Reeva Steenkamp.
Pistorius said he thought Steenkamp was an intruder when he shot through his bathroom door and killed her in the early morning hours on Valentine’s Day.
Olympic downhill champion Lindsey Vonn was the 10th-most trending athlete in the U.S. in 2013.
Seven-time Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong was the fifth-highest trending athlete in the world in 2013.
Globally, the Boston Marathon was the most trending event of 2013.
In Norway, Olympic cross-country skiing champion Petter Northug was the most searched athlete, ahead of prodigious world chess champion Magnus Carlsen.
In South Africa, Pistorius was second in trending people behind Nelson Mandela, who died Dec. 5. Steenkamp was fifth.