Oscar Pistorius' lawyer questions sequence of crime scene photos

March 18, 2014 at 1:10 PM
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PRETORIA, South Africa, March 18 (UPI) -- Attorneys for South African Paralympian Oscar Pistorius, on trial for killing his girlfriend, Tuesday presented photos they said showed evidence had been moved.

Images attorney Barry Roux showed to the court proved key evidence had been repositioned during the time when police photographer Barend Van Staden was meant to be alone to record the "untouched" scene, the Independent Online reported.

Prosecutors maintain Pistorius, a double amputee, deliberately killed girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp when he fired at a closed bathroom door Feb. 14, 2013. Pistorius maintains he thought he was shooting at an intruder.

Two photos of a bathroom mat showed that the position of the gun found on the bathroom floor had changed, while another photo showed the gun had been moved again, Roux said.

Roux said Van Staden hadn't taken the third photo and asked if the photographer was the only one at the scene.

Van Staden said, "as far as I could remember."

Roux then showed the state-provided photos of the scene taken by one of the other officers during Van Staden's initial investigation, the Independent said. Van Staden said he didn't have access to these photos and thus could not comment.

Roux pointed to a time overlap for when the photos were taken in the bedroom and bathroom and Van Staden admitted some of the times correlated.

Roux also pointed out that several photos seemed to be taken out of sequence, even though the time stamps were sequential. He said they photos also indicated evidence had been repositioned.

Also testifying Tuesday was police Capt. Chris Mangena, a ballistics expert with 20 years of experience, who testified about the trajectory of the bullets to determine whether Pistorius was wearing his prosthetic legs.

The trial adjourned until Wednesday.

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