Oscar Pistorius granted parole after serving 10 years for the murder of Reeva Steenkamp

South African Paralympian Oscar Pistorius has been granted parole effective from January 5, 2024, after serving 10 years for the 2013 murder of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp.

Known as the “Blade Runner” for his carbon-fibre prosthetic legs, Pistorius went from a public hero as a Paralympic champion to a convicted killer in hearings that caught the world’s attention a decade ago.

Pistorius shot and killed Ms Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day in 2013.

The parole hearing took place in the Atteridgeville Correctional Centre near the capital, Pretoria, where Pistorius has served the majority of his sentence.

Rob Matthews, spokesperson for Ms Steenkamp’s mother, addressed the media outside the centre, detailing the toll Reeva’s death had had on the family.

“I’m not convinced that Oscar has been rehabilitated. Rehabilitation requires someone to engage honestly with the full truth of his crime and the consequences thereof,” said June Steenkamp in prepared remarks read by Matthews.

A man speaks to a media pack.

Rob Matthews read a statement from Reva Steenkamp’s mother.(Reuters: Sumaya Hisham)

Ms Steenkamp’s parents gave an interview to a British newspaper in February for the 10th anniversary of their daughter’s death and said that they had not forgiven Pistorius, still believed he shot her intentionally in anger and wanted him to stay in prison for the rest of his life.

June Steenkamp attended Pistorius’s first parole hearing in March to oppose his release but did not attend on Friday.

Ms Steenkamp’s father, Barry Steenkamp, died in September.

Several factors are typically taken into account by a parole board, including the nature of the crime, the possibility of reoffending, conduct in prison, physical and mental wellbeing and potential threats a prisoner may face if released.

Pistorius was denied parole in March after it was ruled that he had not completed the minimum detention period required to be considered for parole.

However, the Constitutional Court said in October that Pistorius had served half of his sentence by March 21, which meant he was eligible after his sentence was backdated to July 2016 instead of November 2017.

A woman in a shoestring-strap dress stands next to a man in a suit.

Pistorius killed his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, at their home on Valentine’s Day in 2013.

Initial conviction and sentence upgraded on appeal

Pistorius was initially jailed for five years in 2014 for culpable homicide by a high court but the Supreme Court of Appeal in late 2015 found him guilty of murder after an appeal by prosecutors.

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