Oscar Pistorius murder charge: ‘steroids found at athlete's home'
Oscar Pistorius, the South African Paralympic athlete has reportedly been tested for steroids after the banned drug was found at the home where he is accused of murdering his model girlfriend.
Mr Pistorius, 26, is accused of murdering his model girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, 29, in the early hours of Valentine's Day. He will appear in court on Tuesday.
Police asked for blood taken from Mr Pistorius to be tested for steroids, City Press claimed, in anticipation that his defence team might claim he acted in "roid rage" - an aggressive condition associated with taking large doses of performance-enhancing drugs.
A source told The Sun: "Steroid drugs were found at Pistorius's home together with evidence of heavy drinking. That's why police have specifically ordered that he be tested for steroids."
There was no immediate comment from police of the reported discovery of steroids.
The mother of Miss Steenkamp has told of her desperation for answers about why her daughter was killed.
June Steenkamp wept as she described the loss of “the most beautiful person who ever lived” through a “horrendous death”.
“She loved like no one else could love. She had so much of herself to give and now all of it is gone. Just like that, she is gone. In the blink of an eye and a single breath, the most beautiful person who ever lived is no longer here,” she told South Africa’s Times newspaper.
“All we have is this horrendous death to deal with, to get to grips with. All we want are answers, answers as to why this had to happen, why our beautiful daughter had to die like this.”
Miss Steenkamp, 29, was declared dead shortly after 3am on Thursday morning at the home of Mr Pistorius in a gated compound outside Pretoria. She had been shot in the head, hand, hip and arm, and her skull was reportedly fractured. Mr Pistorius, 26, was arrested shortly afterwards. He is reported to have claimed he shot Miss Steenkamp thinking she was an intruder but he faces a charge of premeditated murder.
The case has provoked an intense bout of soul-searching in South Africa about the high violent crime rates that lead many people to keep guns at their homes.
But Mrs Steenkamp said her daughter was “so proud of being a South African”. “She loved this country and all its people. This was the only place she called home,” she told The Times.
On Tuesday, she will be buried near her home in Port Elizabeth following an “intimate” family funeral. On the same day, Mr Pistorius will appear before Pretoria Magistrates Court for a bail hearing - he is expected to make a short statement.
Miss Steenkamp’s uncle Michael said the family would focus on saying farewell to her. “For now, we are just focusing on getting over the funeral … on getting this part of the difficult journey behind us,” he said.
“We’re trying not to think about Oscar or the court appearance. We have deliberately not watched TV or listened to the radio. We just don’t want to think about it. We want to blank it all out and focus for now on the here and now.”
Whatever the result of the case, he added, nothing would “bring back our Reeva”.
“The issue is not about the outcome. The outcome will be whatever it is meant to be. We’re confident that justice will follow its course,” he said.
Gina Myers, Miss Steenkamp’s flatmate, refused to comment on her relationship with Mr Pistorius. “All I want are answers. That is what all of us, including both families, want. We want the truth to come out … everyone to be honest about what happened,” she said.
Meanwhile, a friend of Mr Pistorius told Afrikaans newspaper Beeld that the champion sprinter nearly shot him through the foot in a Johannesburg restaurant.
Kevin Lerena, a boxer and mutual friend of Mr Pistorius and Miss Steenkamp, said he had been dining at Tasha’s restaurant in Melrose with the couple and other friends when the gun went off by mistake as Mr Pistorius examined it.
“I must emphasise that the gun belonged to one of Pistorius’ friends. Oscar just wanted to look at the gun, and it sort of snagged on his pants, releasing the safety catch,” he told Beeld.
“A shot went off. I wouldn’t call him negligent, it was just an accident.
He apologised to me for days afterwards. I got a huge fright, because the bullet hit the ground just centimetres from my foot … but it really was just a freak accident.”
The restaurant’s manager Jason Loupis said he did not report the incident to police. “I went to investigate when I heard the shot, but they all denied it,” Jason Loupis said.