Just yesterday, Oscar Pistorius breathed a huge sigh of relief when South African Judge Thokozile Masipa found him not guilty of murdering his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp. However, some justice was seen in the courtroom today when a verdict of culpable homicide was handed down, a charge comparable to manslaughter in the United States.
Regarding yesterday’s decision, the prosecuting attorney said he was extremely disappointed. In wake of today’s verdict, Steenkamp’s parents released a statement saying that “justice was not served”. Barry and June Steenkamp gave an exclusive interview to NBC News in which they expressed shock and disbelief. They went on to say that their beloved daughter died a horrible and painful death and they just want the truth.
Although Pistorius was found guilty of culpable homicide, he may not serve any time in jail if Judge Masipa orders house arrest. Even if he is sent away, this type of verdict only carries a minimum prison term of five years. Reeva’s parents went on to say that regardless of how much time he gets or where he serves it, nothing will change – the damage has already been permanently done.
Sentencing will take place on October 13 but until that time, Pistorius is allowed to remain out of jail on bond. After the verdict was read, he pushed his way past a massive crowd outside the courthouse and made no statement. However, his family did by saying that they never doubted his version of the events on that fateful Valentine’s Day in 2013.
Obviously, other people were outraged with the verdict beyond Barry and June Steenkamp but Judge Masipa was unmoved and said she stands behind her decision. The family of Reeva hoped that justice would be served at the end of the 41-day trial but now, they are left with nothing more than memories of a daughter they cherished and loved.