Oscar Pistorius’s Murder Sentence Is Increased to 15 Years

Oscar Pistorius’s Murder Sentence Is Increased to 15 Years


Oscar Pistorius leaving the High Court in Pretoria, South Africa, in 2016.

Karel Prinsloo/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

South Africa’s Supreme Court of Appeal on Friday more than doubled the sentence imposed by a lower court on Oscar Pistorius, a double-amputee Olympic sprinter convicted of shooting and killing his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, in February 2013.

After his initial trial in 2014, Mr. Pistorius, sometimes nicknamed Blade Runner for the prosthetics on which he runs, was sentenced for manslaughter, but that was later changed on appeal to murder. He was jailed for six years and has served slightly more than a year of that sentence.

Prosecutors said the six-year term was “shockingly lenient,” however, and they appealed. In response, the Supreme Court of Appeal increased it on Friday to 15 years — the minimum term in South Africa for murder — but deducted the time he has already served on the murder charge.

In his defense, Mr. Pistorius argued that he had shot Ms. Steenkamp by accident, believing her to be an intruder at his upscale villa in Pretoria. He was not in court on Friday to hear the decision.

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