‘Blade Runner’ Oscar Pistorius to walk free in January

Oscar Pistorius was jailed for murdering his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in 2013.

Oscar Pistorius was jailed for murdering his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in 2013. Photo: Getty

Former Olympic and Paralympic athlete Oscar Pistorius, who was convicted of killing his girlfriend a decade ago, is to be released on parole on January 5, the South African prison service says.

Pistorius, widely known as the “Blade Runner” because of his prosthetics, murdered his then partner Reeva Steenkamp with four shots through a lavatory door in his Pretoria home on the eve of Valentine’s Day in 2013.

Steenkamp’s mother June issued a warning that she was “not convinced” Pistorius had been rehabilitated and she feared for the safety of women.

“At this time, I am not convinced that Oscar has been rehabilitated,” she said in a statement in response to the granting of parole.

“Rehabilitation requires someone to engage honestly with the full truth of his crime and the consequences thereof. Nobody can claim to have remorse if they are not able to engage fully with the truth.

“If someone does not show remorse, they cannot be considered to be rehabilitated. If they are not rehabilitated, their risk of recidivism is high.

“I do not know to what extent this behaviour still exists or were evident during his time of incarceration, but I am concerned for the safety of any woman should this not have been addressed in his rehabilitation.”

Legal proceedings dragged on for years in multiple trials.

Pistorius defended his actions by saying he believed there was an intruder in his home but the court ultimately rejected his evidence and convicted him of murder.

Now aged 37, he has served half of his sentence of 13 years and five months.

Under South African law, he has an automatic right to a parole hearing.

Pistorius was classified at a parole hearing on Friday as “a first-time offender with a positive support system”.

Sentence not over

Pistorius will be constantly monitored by parole officials for five years until his sentence expires, the Department of Corrections said on Friday.

His parole will come with other conditions, Department of Corrections spokesman Singabakho Nxumalo said outside of the prison where Pistorius has been incarcerated in the South African capital Pretoria.

Pistorius will not be allowed to leave the area of Pretoria where he is set to live without permission from authorities.

He will also attend a program to deal with anger issues and another program on violence against women.

He will have to perform community service.

“Parole does not mean the end of the sentence. It is still part of the sentence. It only means the inmate will complete the sentence outside a correctional facility,” Nxumalo said.

“What will happen is that Mr. Pistorius will be allocated a monitoring official. This official will work with him until his sentence expires.”


Pistorius competed at the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

At the time of his offence, Pistorius was at the peak of his career.

He had won six gold medals at the 2012 Paralympic Games on custom-made carbon prostheses.

He competed at the able-bodied World Championships in 2011 and then at the Olympics in London in 2012.

His legs had been amputated below the knees as a child due to a genetic defect.

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