Oscar Pistorius, right, arrives inside the High Court in Pretoria, South Africa, Wednesday, July 6, 2016. A South African judge is expected to announce Pistorius' sentence for murdering girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in his home on Valentine's Day 2013. (Marco Langori/Pool Photo via AP)
Oscar Pistorius, right, arrives inside the High Court in Pretoria, South Africa, Wednesday, July 6, 2016. A South African judge is expected to announce Pistorius' sentence for murdering girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in his home on Valentine's Day 2013. (Marco Langori/Pool Photo via AP)

Pistorius gets six years jail

PARALYMPIAN Oscar Pistorius has been sentenced to six years in prison. 

The 29 year-old appeared in court dressed in a dark suit and showed no emotion as he was sentenced. 

In handing down her decision Judge Thokozile Masipa said she had to determine whether there were "substantial and compelling circumstances to deviate from minimum 15 year jail term".

In an hour-long session, she said mitigating circumstances, such as rehabilitation and remorse, outweighed aggravating factors for deviating from the prescribed 15-year sentence for murder.

On Valentine's Day 2013 Pistorius shot his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp through a bathroom door later claiming he mistook her for a burglar, 

Last October he was freed from jail after serving one year of a maximum five year sentence for culpable homicide. 

However an appeals court upgraded the charge to murder.

"The sentence that I impose will have to reflect not only that fact but also the seriousness of the offence," Justice Masipa said. 

"The sentence that I impose on the accused.... is six years imprisonment."

PIstorius' defence team now says he could walk free in as little as 10 months. 

Justice Masipa noted evidence from Ms Steenkamp's father Barry and her cousin Kim Martin. 

"Mr Steenkamp spoke on the impact the deceased's death has had on him specifically,"

"He now suffers from ill health, he thinks of the deceased everyday, he has her photographs everywhere in the house.

"He now avoids meeting people and often gets up at three o'clock in the morning to sit in the veranda smoking and talking to deceased.

"He told this court that his wife also suffers as much as he does.

"The evidence of both Mr Steenkamp and Miss Martin shows that the pain runs deep and that the impact of the accused's conduct on the family of the deceased has been devastating.

"Miss Martin told this court that the family is anxious and depressed - they've been exposed to the media and she is loathe to meet people or go places as they never know when someone might say something about the deceased, the accused or about the incident.

"She however has to cope and go on with her life for the sake of her children."

However the Judge also spoke highly of Pistorius' remorse and his attempts at rehabilitation. 


Federal Landcare group established

Federal Landcare group established

Federal landcare warriors unite

PM criticises Byron Bay's Australia Day change

PM criticises Byron Bay's Australia Day change

"Indulgent self-loathing does not make Australia stronger," he said

Local architects up for awards

Local architects up for awards

Byron architects punch above their weight

Local Partners