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Fearful Pistorius shot girlfriend due to 'primal instincts': Defence

Published on Aug 8, 2014 6:05 PM
 
South African Olympic and Paralympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius drinks from a bottle as he sits in the dock before the defence's final argument in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Aug 8, 2014. Pistorius' "primal instincts" kicked in when he shot dead his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp because he was in a vulnerable and fearful state, his defence lawyer said at the athlete's murder trial on Friday. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

PRETORIA (REUTERS) - Oscar Pistorius' "primal instincts" kicked in when he shot dead his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp because he was in a vulnerable and fearful state, his defence lawyer said at the athlete's murder trial on Friday.

Double amputee Pistorius, 27, once a national icon for reaching the pinnacle of sport, is accused of murdering Steenkamp, a law graduate and model, at his home in Pretoria on Valentine's Day last year.

The defence says Pistorius, nicknamed the 'Blade Runner' after the carbon-fibre prosthetic running legs he uses, shot Steenkamp through a locked toilet door believing she was an intruder.

RState prosecutor Gerrie Nel has spent the trial, which began in March, portraying Pist orius as a gun-obsessed hothead who deliberately shot Steenkamp, 29, four

 
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