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Pistorius forensic handling queried

Oscar Pistorius on March 7

LIVE: Coverage of murder trial of Oscar Pistorius

A forensics expert has defended police handling of evidence from the scene of Oscar Pistorius’ shooting of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.

Defence lawyers allege that evidence from the scene went missing and that investigative techniques such as microscopic analysis were not used.

Mr Pistorius says he mistakenly shot his Ms Steenkamp through a bathroom door, believing she was a burglar.

The prosecution says he tried to beat down the door and then fired the gun.


On Wednesday, the court heard from forensic expert Police Colonel Johan Vermeulen, who said that Mr Pistorius was not wearing his prosthetic legs when he hit the door with a cricket bat.

The athlete has previously testified that he put on his prosthetic legs before he attempted to break down the door with the bat.

The damaged toilet door, with four bullet holes, is in court along with a replica of the bathroom where Ms Steenkamp died.

The trial is now halfway through its second week.

Reeva Steenkamp and Oscar PistoriusOscar Pistorius shot Reeva Steenkamp through a bathroom door

The state is seeking to convince the court that Mr Pistorius and Ms Steenkamp, a 29-year-old model, and reality TV star, had an argument before the athlete fired the shots that killed her.

There are no juries at trials in South Africa, and his fate will ultimately be decided by the judge, assisted by two assessors.

If found guilty, the 27-year-old, a national sporting hero dubbed the “blade runner”, could face life imprisonment.

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