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Was Pistorius wearing prosthetic legs when he tried to bash door?

March 12, 2014 at 11:18 AM   |   Comments

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PRETORIA, South Africa, March 12 (UPI) -- South African Paralympian Oscar Pistorius wasn't wearing prosthesis when he tried to bash a bathroom door, a forensics official said at Pistorius' murder trial.

Using a recreation of the bathroom door and its casing, Col. J.G. Vermeulen testified about the cricket bat Pistorius used to break open the door and the door itself, through which he shot and killed his girlfriend, model Reeva Steenkamp, on Feb. 14, 2013, the Independent Online of South Africa reported.

While admitting he shot Steenkamp, Pistorius said he thought he was shooting at an intruder through the closed bathroom door of his Pretoria home.

Defense attorney Barry Roux questioned Vermeulen about the prosecutors' one-time contention that Pistorius was wearing his prostheses when he struck the door with the cricket bat. The state had argued at Pistorius' bail hearing that he was wearing his prosthetics, but told the court later this was no longer the belief.

Roux maintains Pistorius was standing on his prosthetic legs when the door was bashed because he would have lost his balance if he weren't while swinging the bat.

Vermeulen demonstrated swinging the bat while on his knees and admitted he had lost balance, but wouldn't testify on Pistorius's balance as an expert, the Independent said. He said that someone born without legs would have greater balance.

Vermeulen also testified Pistorius was the same height when the shots were fired and when the door was broken, but wasn't in the same position.

Vermeulen also said if Pistorius could have maintained balance while shooting a firearm, as claimed by the defense, he probably could have been stable while using the cricket bat.

The trial adjourned until Thursday.

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