Oscar Pistorius is Going to Jail, Sentenced 5 Years

Oscar Pistorius Guilty
Oscar Pistorius found guilty of culpable homicide; still allowed to compete in paralympics.
Oscar Pistorius, Suspected of Murder
Oscar Pistorius joins the list of celebrity murder suspects.
South African “blade runner” Oscar Pistorius has been sentenced to five years in prison. The 27-year-old athlete was found guilty of culpable homicide, or negligent killing, for the February 14, 2013 killing of his then-girlfriend, model Reeva Steenkamp.

South African Judge Thokozile Masipa cited the “gross negligence” he showed in shooting her multiple times through a bathroom door. Steenkamp, 29, was shot and killed by Pistorius in his home in Pretoria, South Africa. Pistorius insisted he thought she was a nighttime intruder, and that it was an accident.

Last month, Pistorius was acquitted of premeditated murder. His five-year prison sentence starts immediately. How much of the five-year sentence Pistorius will serve in prison is already up for dispute.

According to the defense team, the athlete will be eligible to be considered for release to house arrest after he serves a sixth of his sentence (about 10 months). The National Prosecuting Authority, however, says the minimum requirement is a third of his sentence (20 months).

To the Steenkamp family, Judge Masipa said, “Young, vivacious and full of life … a promising young woman who cared deeply for family, who was full of hope for the future, and lived life to the full. The loss of life cannot be reversed. Nothing I do or say today can reverse what happened to the deceased and to her family. Hopefully this sentence shall provide some sort of closure to the family … so they can move on with their lives.”

After the proceedings, Steenkamp’s father said, “I’m pleased that it’s over”.

In addition to his five-year sentence, Pistorius was given a three-year sentence for a separate incident that happened weeks before Steenkamp’s unfortunate Valentine’s Day shooting, in which he unlawfully fired a gun in a restaurant.

Despite his culpable homicide charges, the athlete will, unbelievably, be able to compete professionally in the future. For now, he’s banned from participating in the 2016 Rio Olympics.