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Oscar Pistorius Up For Parole After Serving Half His Sentence For Killing His Girlfriend

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Oscar Pistorius Up For Parole After Serving Half His Sentence For Killing His Girlfriend

Oscar Pistorius is up for parole after serving a little more than half of his sentence for shooting dead his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.

The South African Paralympic gold medallist was sentenced to nearly 13 and a half years behind bars for shooting his model partner multiple times through a door in his home on Valentine's Day in 2013.

He claimed he mistook her for an intruder, however the courts didn't agree and he was found guilty of culpable homicide. An appeals court later upgraded his conviction to murder.

The 34-year-old has now served half his prison sentence and is up for early release, although he must now come face-to-face with his victim's family.

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According to reports, Steenkamp's parents want a meeting with Pistorius before he is considered for parole.

Credit: Roger Sedres/Gallo Images
Credit: Roger Sedres/Gallo Images

Under South Africa's victim-offender dialogue policy, which is utilised to help the families of victims find closure, June and Barry Steenkamp are well within their rights to call for a meeting and have previously voiced their desire to confront Pistorius.

It's understood Pistorius was actually up for parole back in July of this year, but the official process wasn't able to begin because the meeting with the victim's family hadn't taken place.

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"There is the issue of victim-offender dialogue that needs to take place before his profile can be taken to the parole board," the prison spokesman Singabakho Nxumalo told AFP. "It's quite a sensitive and emotional process."

News of Pistorius' potential early release has left the Steenkamp's parents 'distraught'.

The Steenkamps' lawyer Tania Koen said: "But over that shock, they were distraught, especially after the department cancelled the meeting. That was a double blow.

Credit: Gallo Images/City Press/Herman Verwey
Credit: Gallo Images/City Press/Herman Verwey
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"It opens a lot of wounds, or rips off the plasters they had put on those wounds."

Pistorius broke his silence from behind bars only last year and pleaded for forgiveness from the family.

"What he really, really wants is forgiveness," Pistorius' old school teacher Bill Schroder told the Sun. "I said to him that if he had killed my daughter I doubt I would forgive him.

"He is more concerned about forgiveness than actually getting out on parole. In fact, he has a real fear about getting parole as he knows they'll be a backlash.

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"He still maintains to this day it was an accident. I did feel he was showing remorse.

"He quoted a study by an expert that when you are woken from a deep sleep and are put into a situation of fear that you act very differently to when fully conscious. I listened to him but did not buy it."

Featured Image Credit: Gallo Images/Lefty Shivambu/Alamy Live News

Topics: SPORT, News

Max Sherry
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