Voice of America (Washington, DC)

3 March 2014

South Africa to Open Pistorius Murder Trial

The first witness in the Oscar Pistorius murder trial testified Monday to hearing "blood-curdling" screams from a woman before she heard four gunshots ... ( Resource: Pistorius Trial: Witness Heard Screams, Then Shots

Olympic runner Oscar Pistorius goes on trial Monday in South Africa on charges he murdered his girlfriend at his home last year.

The trial is being held at a court in Pretoria, where a judge will decide the case.

Prosecutors say Pistorius killed model Reeva Steenkamp by shooting through a locked bathroom door after an argument.

Pistorius has admitted he shot her, but says he mistook Steenkamp for a nighttime intruder. If convicted of premeditated murder, he faces a life sentence.

The much-anticipated case has generated enormous media attention in South Africa and elsewhere. Parts of the trial will be broadcast live, and a South African station has launched a 24-hour channel dedicated to the proceedings.

The 27-year-old Pistorius is known as "Blade Runner" for his carbon-fiber prosthetic legs. He competed in the 2012 London Olympics.

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