Oscar Pistorius

Oscar Pistorius trial starts Monday; key information

2 Comments

Oscar Pistorius will go on trial beginning Monday, charged with murdering his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, on the early morning of Valentine’s Day 2013.

Pistorius, the first double amputee to run at the Summer Olympics when he competed in London, said he unknowingly shot and killed Steenkamp, who was with Pistorius at his Pretoria, South Africa, home that overnight.

Pistorius shot four times through a bathroom door, hitting Steenkamp three times with bullets from his licensed 9mm Parabellum pistol. His defense was that he thought the person in the bathroom was an intruder and that Steenkamp was in bed.

When and where is the trial?

The trial begins at 3 a.m. ET on Monday at the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria with the full trial period set for March 3-20, though it won’t necessarily end March 20. The schedule (subject to change by the judge) calls for court proceedings to run from 3-4:15 a.m., 4:30-6 a.m. and 7-9 a.m. ET.

As many as 107 witnesses could be called based on this indictment from August.

How can I follow the trial?

South African media outlets were granted permission Tuesday to broadcast live video of parts of the trial, not including Pistorius’ potential testimony. The broadcasts also can be made available to international stations, according to The Associated Press.

A live audio feed will be allowed for the whole of the trial. Links to live audio were made available at Pistorius’ court appearances last year. (Update: South African media outlet Eyewitness News has an audio live stream link here)

Here’s a Twitter list of accounts related to the trial.

What are the potential outcomes?

Pistorius, 27, was indicted on a charge of premeditated murder in August. If convicted of premeditated murder, he faces a life sentence with a minimum of 25 years in prison. There is no death penalty in South Africa.

If not premeditated murder, he could be convicted of lesser charges such as culpable homicide (negligent killing) with shorter prison sentences.

A judge will determine Pistorius’ guilt or innocence. There is no trial by jury in South Africa.

Here’s NBC News’ full coverage of the Pistorius trial.

Francesco Friedrich wins historic fourth straight bobsled world title

German bob team, Francesco Friedrich, right, and Thorsten Margis, celebrate their victory  after the men's  two-man bob race at the  Bobsleigh and Skeleton World Championships at Lake Koenigssee, Germany, Sunday Feb. 19. 2017. (Angelika Warmuth/dpa via AP)
AP
Leave a comment

KOENIGSSEE, Germany (AP) — Germany’s Francesco Friedrich was again fastest in both runs to extend his lead and beat Justin Kripps of Canada for his fourth straight world championship in two-man bobsled on Sunday.

Friedrich, who held a 0.52-lead from Saturday’s opening heats, clocked 49.17 seconds and then 48.94 with his brakeman Thorsten Margis for a combined time of 3 minutes, 16.71 seconds after four runs — 1.20 ahead of Kripps and Jesse Lumsden.

The 26-year-old Friedrich says “We were simply unbeatable this week.”

Germany’s Johannes Lochner was 1.25 back in third with Joshua Bluhm, ahead of Oskars Kibermanis and Matiss Miknis of Latvia, Nick Poloniato and Neville Wright of Canada, and Oskars Melbardis and Janis Strenga of Latvia.

American pilot Steven Holcomb was seventh with Carlo Valdes, 1.68 back.

A skeleton and bobsled team competition was scheduled later Sunday.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

MORE: PyeongChang 2018 daily schedule highlights

Marcel Hirscher reclaims slalom title, wraps up ‘perfect worlds’

ST MORITZ, SWITZERLAND - FEBRUARY 17:  Gold medalist Marcel Hirscher of Austria celebrates on the podium following the Men's Giant Slalom during the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships on February 17, 2017 in St Moritz, Switzerland.  (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
Getty Images
1 Comment

Austrian Marcel Hirscher reclaimed the slalom world title, wrapping up what he called “the perfect world championships” with two golds and one silver in St. Moritz, Switzerland, on Sunday.

Hirscher, the five-time reigning World Cup overall champion, prevailed by .68 of a second combining two runs. Fellow Austrian Manuel Feller earned silver, followed by German Felix Neureuther, .93 behind.

Hirscher’s biggest slalom rival, Henrik Kristoffersen, was a disappointing fourth, giving Norway fourth-place finishers in all five men’s events at worlds.

The top American was David Chodounsky in 12th.

Full Results | Race Replay

Hirscher led by .43 after the morning run and had the third-fastest second run. He finished worlds with golds in the giant slalom and slalom and silver in the super combined, missing gold by .01. All that despite entering worlds sick, reportedly spending days ill in bed.

He said that super combined silver, and especially his maiden GS title, took the pressure off Sunday.

“It was super easy for me, mentally, to [go] into this race,” Hirscher said. “It doesn’t matter if I straddle at the first gate. The only thing that wouldn’t be fine is skiing slow.”

Hirscher is en route to his sixth straight World Cup overall title this season. No other man has won that many, consecutive or not. He previously won the slalom world title in 2013, then was upset at the Sochi Olympics, taking silver behind countryman Mario Matt, who at 34 became the oldest Olympic Alpine champion.

Hirscher led the 2015 Worlds slalom by .88 after the first run, then straddled a gate near the end of the second run while his lead was evaporating.

Hirscher has already proven his excellence on the World Cup and world championships stages. It’s PyeongChang where he must deliver, since he lacks Olympic gold. Hirscher is only 27 years old, but he has cast doubt on going all the way to the 2022 Winter Games.

Feller, 24, took surprise silver without a World Cup podium to his name.

Neureuther earned his third straight world slalom medal, but none have been gold.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

MORE: PyeongChang 2018 daily schedule highlights