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Family: Oscar Pistorius not suicidal

March 12, 2013 at 7:19 AM   |   Comments

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PRETORIA, South Africa, March 12 (UPI) -- The family of Oscar Pistorius, who is accused of killing his girlfriend, denied a report that the paralympian runner was contemplating suicide.

Pistorius' uncle, Arnold Pistorius, said in a statement Monday that the runner has the "purpose in life" of clearing his name in the death of his girlfriend, model Reeva Steenkamp, and wasn't suicidal as family friend Mike Azzie told a BBC documentary, The Daily Telegraph reported Monday.

"Oscar Pistorius is in deep mourning but despite the tragic circumstances he is certainly not suicidal, as has been rumored," the statement said. "Oscar, broken as he currently is, believes he has a purpose in life and is working towards that. Media reports to the contrary are untrue."

Pistorius is accused of killing Steenkamp by shooting her through a closed bathroom door of his Pretoria home Feb. 14. He said he thought he was shooting at an intruder.

"Of course Oscar will never be the same, having to live with the knowledge that he caused the death of the woman he loved, but he is coping as best he can with the support of his loved ones," the statement said.

A former boyfriend of Steenkamp reportedly claimed he and the model met two days before she was killed, the Telegraph said.

Warren Lahoud, a South African vegetable exporter who said he dated Steenkamp for several years, also told a BBC documentary Pistorius called her twice soon after they met.

He said he asked if things were all right and she replied, "There's nothing wrong."

"She seemed fine," he told the BBC. "We didn't really discuss personal relationships. It was more a friendly thing."

Police are examining Steenkamp's phone and iPad for messages sent during the days soon before her death.

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