Oscar Pistorius threw up repeatedly during testimony from the man who conducted the autopsy on deceased girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, drawing concern from the judge of his murder trial, according to reports from the courtroom Monday.
Pathologist Gert Saayman’s testimony included graphic descriptions of Steenkamp’s gunshot wounds, including details of a shattered skull, according to court reports.
Judge Thokozile Masipa banned live video, audio and tweeting of Saayman’s testimony despite a pre-trial ruling that allowed proceedings to be broadcast fully in audio and largely in video, save witnesses who didn’t want to be televised.
Saayman had warned that the “very personal nature” of the autopsy findings “could compromise the dignity of the deceased.” He also cited possible harm to Steenkamp’s friends and family if the testimony was shown.
Monday’s ban, an exception, was 90 minutes in the making with discussions over whether the testimony be shown, including an adjournment.
Reporters at the trial did not detail Saayman’s testimony as it happened. Instead, the reports centered on Pistorius’ reaction to what Saayman said.
Pistorius, the first double amputee to run in the Olympics in 2012, is on trial for charges including murdering Steenkamp on the early morning of Valentine’s Day 2013. He could face 25 years to life in prison if convicted of premeditated murder. He shot four times through a bathroom door, hitting Steenkamp inside.
The prosecution asserts Pistorius shot through the door after an argument with Steenkamp. Pistorius has said he mistook Steenkamp for an intruder.
The trial is expected to resume at 3:30 a.m. ET on Tuesday with more from Saayman.
Here’s Pistorius lawyer Kenny Oldwage first raising the issue of Twitter in regards to Saayman’s testimony on Monday:
Here’s the judge ruling no live audio, video or tweeting of Saayman’s testimony: