Oscar Pistorius

Reeva Steenkamp texts to Oscar Pistorius: ‘I’m scared of you sometimes’

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A text from Reeva Steenkamp‘s phone to Oscar Pistorius said, “I’m scared of you sometimes,” 18 days before Steenkamp was fatally shot by Pistorius last year, a cell phone analyst testified at Pistorius’ murder trial Monday.

Police Capt. Francois Moller said he and others read through 2,731 WhatsApp and iMessage messages on Steenkamp’s phone recovered from the scene of her death on Valentine’s Day 2013 and found 1,709 of the messages were between Steenkamp and Pistorius.

Moller estimated 90 percent of the messages were “normal conversations and loving conversations,” between Pistorius, the first double amputee to run in the Olympics in 2012, and Steenkamp, his model girlfriend.

The selected messages Moller read in a Pretoria court room Monday depicted problems in their relationship in the three weeks before Pistorius shot four times through a locked bathroom door in his home, hitting and killing Steenkamp inside.

“I’m scared of you sometimes, and how you snap at me and of how you will react to me,” Moller read as part of a text from Steenkamp’s phone of more than 500 words on Jan. 27, 2013. “You make me happy 90 percent of the time, and I think we are amazing together, but I am not some other bitch.”

The message said that Steenkamp was unhappy with Pistorius for leaving an engagement with a friend earlier than she wanted.

“I was not flirting with anyone today,” Moller read from the message. “I feel sick that you suggested that, and that you made a scene at the table and made us leave early. I’m terribly disappointed in how the day ended and how you left me. We are living in a double standard relationship where you can be mad about how I deal with stuff when you are very quick to act cold and offish when you’re unhappy.

“From the outside, I think it looks like we are a struggle, and maybe that’s what we are. I just want to love and be loved, be happy and make someone so happy. Maybe we can’t do that for each other cause right now I know you aren’t happy, and I’m certainly very unhappy and sad.”

Responses came from Pistorius’ phone later that day, apologizing and asking to call Steenkamp.

“I want to sort this out,” Moller read. “I don’t want to have anything less than amazing for you and I. I’m sorry for the things I say without thinking and for taking offense to some of your actions.”

The last message Moller read Monday came from Steenkamp’s phone to Pistorius’ phone on Feb. 8, 2013, six days before the fatal shooting.

“I regard myself as a lady, and I don’t feel like one tonight after the way you treated me when we left,” Moller read. “I’m a person, too, and I appreciate that you invited me out tonight, and I realize that you get harassed, but I am trying my best to make you happy, and I feel as though you sometimes never are, no matter the effort I put in. I can’t be attacked by outsiders for dating you and be attacked by you, the one person I deserve protection from.”

Pistorius could face up to 25 years if convicted of premeditated murder. He said he shot thinking there was an intruder locked in his bathroom on Valentine’s Day 2013. The prosecution said Pistorius shot after an argument with Steenkamp.

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

The trial is expected to resume on Tuesday at 3:30 a.m. ET.

Oscar Pistorius trial extended to May

Nathan Chen ushers in new era with record-breaking nationals short program

ST PAUL, MN - JANUARY 24: Nathan Chen looks on after competing in the Men's Free Skate at the 2016 Prudential U.S. Figure Skating Championship on January 24, 2016 at Xcel Energy Center in St Paul, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
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KANSAS CITY — Nathan Chen is in position to become the youngest U.S. men’s champion in 51 years and, as he said Friday night, help put the U.S. “back on the map” in men’s skating.

Chen, 17 and already an Olympic medal contender, tallied 106.39 points in the short program, taking Jeremy Abbott‘s U.S. Championships record of 99.86 from 2014 off the books.

He carries a whopping 17.72-point lead into Sunday’s free skate (4 p.m. ET, NBC, NBCSports.com/live and the NBC Sports app).

Chen, a past U.S. novice and junior champion, landed two quadruple jumps and continued his rise in a breakout senior season after taking silver at the Grand Prix Final last month.

He said after his skate that he’s ready to handle the tag of Olympic medal contender and to go for the world title in Helsinki in March.

“I’m able to stack up against these top-level skaters,” said Chen, who beat the reigning Olympic and world champions in the Grand Prix Final free skate. “That’s something I’ve strived for my whole life. I don’t think it’s something I should necessarily be afraid of, something that I’ve wanted my whole life.”

Chen leads the U.S. Championships over a member of the old guard, Ross Miner, a 25-year-old who made three straight U.S. podiums from 2011-13 but none since.

Vincent Zhou, who turned 16 three months ago, was third, but within .82 of Miner. Full results are here.

“Nathan Chen has always been a few steps ahead of me,” said Zhou, who won the 2013 U.S. junior title and finished fifth at the 2016 World Junior Championships, taking two years off in between to recover from a torn meniscus in his right knee and focus on school. “When he was intermediate, I was just a little preliminary admiring him. Now it feels amazing to start closing the gap.”

The U.S. will send two men to the world championships in two months, selected after Sunday’s free skate, and they likely won’t be the usual names. Neither Chen nor Zhou has been to senior worlds, and Miner’s last appearance was 2013.

The 2016 U.S. champion, Adam Rippon, is not competing this week due to a season-ending broken foot. The 2015 U.S. champion, Jason Brown, is in fourth place, 8.62 behind third-place Zhou. Max Aaron, the 2013 U.S. champion, fell twice and tumbled to 12th place Friday.

“It just wasn’t a good day,” Aaron said. “It’s not me.”

There are no more pressure-filled world championships than those one year before the Olympics, where skaters earn Olympic entries for their countries.

“That would definitely be a massive step up that I haven’t prepared for in the fullest, but it would be an absolute honor if I were to be able to go,” Zhou said. “But, for now, I’m setting more of my sights on junior worlds.”

Hopes will mostly be riding with Chen, who has a shot to become the first U.S. men’s medalist at an Olympics or worlds since Evan Lysacek took the 2010 Olympic title.

“We’re pushing back up to where we should be,” Chen said of the U.S. men. “We kind of sunk a little bit, but I think me and some of the other skaters coming up at this event will help bring the U.S. back on the map.”

The U.S. Championships continue Saturday with the pairs free skate, free dance and women’s free skate, with coverage starting at 3 p.m. ET on NBC, NBCSports.com/live and the NBC Sports app.

Check out NBCsports.com/USFIGS for all-access coverage all weekend.

MORE: Ashley Wagner ‘sick’ of hearing about her age

Men’s Short Program
1. Nathan Chen — 106.39
2. Ross Miner — 88.67
3. Vincent Zhou — 87.85
4. Jason Brown — 79.23
5. Grant Hochstein — 79.10

Maia, Alex Shibutani break U.S. Championships short dance record

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KANSAS CITY — Maia and Alex Shibutani broke the U.S. Championships short dance record held by Olympic champions Meryl Davis and Charlie White on Friday.

The defending national champion Shibutanis tallied 82.42 points at Sprint Center, easily taking down the Davis-and-White mark of 80.69 set at the 2014 U.S. Championships.

Scores have been higher this season overall, leading to records in international competitions, too.

“Didn’t know it was a record,” Maia Shibutani said. “It was our strongest performance of the short dance so far this season. That’s exactly what we want to be showing right now before we head to the second half of the season.”

The Shibutanis lead by 2.46 points over 2015 U.S. champions Madison Chock and Evan Bates going into Saturday’s free dance (3 p.m. ET, NBC, NBCSports.com/live and the NBC Sports app).

Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue, three-time U.S. bronze medalists, are again third. Full results are here.

U.S. Figure Skating will send three dance couples to the world championships in two months. The Shibutanis, Chock and Bates and Hubbell and Donohue were those three couples the past two seasons.

The U.S. is the world power in ice dance, impressively rising during Davis and White’s break since Sochi.

The Shibutanis took silver and Chock and Bates took bronze at the 2016 World Championships. Hubbell and Donohue made it three U.S. couples in the top six at worlds for the first time since 1955.

Chock and Bates had been the top U.S. couple since the Sochi Olympics up until last year’s U.S. Championships. The Shibutanis have topped Chock and Bates in their last three competitions together.

Check out NBCsports.com/USFIGS for all-access coverage all weekend.

MORE: U.S. Championships broadcast schedule

Short Dance
1. Maia Shibutani/Alex Shibutani — 82.42
2. Madison Chock/Evan Bates — 79.96
3. Madison Hubbell/Zachary Donohue — 79.72
4. Kaitlin Hawayek/Jean-Luc Baker — 72.60
5. Elliana Pogrebinsky/Alex Benoit — 67.17