The Ottumwa Courier

AP Sports

March 3, 2014

Pistorius pleads not guilty at start of trial

PRETORIA, South Africa (AP) — The first witness in the Oscar Pistorius murder trial testified Monday to hearing a woman's "blood-curdling" screams before the sound of four gunshots on the night the double-amputee Olympian killed his girlfriend.

Michell Burger, a woman who lives on an estate next to Pistorius' gated community, said she and her husband were awoken by the screams in the pre-dawn hours of Feb. 14 last year, when Pistorius killed Reeva Steenkamp by shooting four times through a door in his bathroom.

Pistorius says he killed Steenkamp by mistake thinking she was a dangerous intruder in his house, but prosecutors believe the world-famous athlete shot his girlfriend after a fight and immediately tried to paint a picture at the trial of a loud argument before the fatal shots.

Burger's testimony contradicts Pistorius' version of events, because he said he thought Steenkamp was in bed and he did not describe any woman screaming.

"It was very traumatic," Burger said, speaking in Afrikaans through an interpreter and in answer to questions from lead prosecutor Gerrie Nel. "You could hear it was blood-curdling screams. You can't translate it into words. The anxiousness in her voice, and fear. It leaves you cold."

Burger said: "She screamed terribly and she yelled for help" and testified that she also heard a man shout for help before the shots were fired.

Pistorius' lawyer, Barry Roux, opened his cross-examination by asking Burger if she thought Pistorius was a liar. She didn't directly answer that with a yes or no, but repeated her recollection of the night's events.

"I can only tell the court what I heard that evening," Burger said. "I cannot understand how I could clearly hear a woman scream but Mr. Pistorius could not hear it."

Text Only
AP Sports
  • Baseball Capsules OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Brandon Moss hit a grand slam and the Oakland Athletics gave Jeff Samardzija more run support Thursday than he has had all season in a 13-1 victory over the Houston Astros. Jed Lowrie had three hits and drove in a run for the A

    July 25, 2014

  • Padres Cubs Baseball-6 [Duplicate] Padres rout Cubs 11-3 CHICAGO (AP) — You would never know the San Diego Padres have the lowest team batting average in the major leagues by the way they hit against the Chicago Cubs and starter Edwin Jackson. The light-hitting Padres broke out for a season-best nine runs

    July 25, 2014 4 Photos

  • Bears Emery Football [Duplicate] Bears aiming high in Year 2 under Trestman BOURBONNAIS, Ill. (AP) — This time last year, Chicago Bears coach Marc Trestman was still something of a curiosity. He was a guy leading an NFL team for the first time as training camp started, plucked from Canada after spending several years out of

    July 25, 2014 3 Photos

  • Vikings Camp Football-3 [Duplicate] Punished Priefer: 'I went way below the bar' MANKATO, Minn. (AP) — The Minnesota Vikings could hardly hold training camp without some kind of controversy or sideshow. This version came with quite the twist: special teams coordinator Mike Priefer in the spotlight. As players unpacked their vehic

    July 25, 2014 3 Photos

  • FIFA rejects calls to strip Russia of World Cup ZURICH (AP) — FIFA has rejected calls to move the 2018 World Cup from Russia, saying the tournament "can achieve positive change." Russia's alleged involvement in shooting down a Malaysia Airlines plane over Ukraine last week prompted calls from some

    July 25, 2014

  • Padres Cubs Baseball [Duplicate] Wada struggles as Cubs fall 8-3 to Padres CHICAGO (AP) — When asked through a translator if he was nervous in his second big-league start, Tsuyoshi Wada said simply, "Yes." It showed as Wada (0-1) allowed five runs on five hits and four walks in four-plus innings in an 8-3 loss to San Diego

    July 24, 2014 5 Photos

  • Rays Cardinals Baseball-3 [Duplicate] Cobb outduels Lynn, Tampa Bay beats St. Louis 3-0 ST. LOUIS (AP) — St. Louis right-hander Lance Lynn was at the top of his game on Wednesday night. So was Tampa Bay right-hander Alex Cobb and the Rays beat the Cardinals 3-0. Lynn gave up one earned run over 6 1-3 innings and continued a streak of fo

    July 24, 2014 3 Photos

  • Manchester United Galaxy Soccer-9 [Duplicate] Man United buries Galaxy 7-0 in Van Gaal's debut PASADENA, California (AP) — Manchester United made an impressive debut under coach Louis van Gaal on Wednesday night, with Wayne Rooney scoring twice late in the first half of a 7-0 friendly victory over the LA Galaxy. Ashley Young and defender Reece

    July 24, 2014 6 Photos

  • Baseball Capsules SEATTLE (AP) — Bartolo Colon came within seven outs of a perfect game, giving up a single to Robinson Cano with two outs in the seventh inning, and the New York Mets held off a late rally to beat the Seattle Mariners 3-2 on Wednesday. The 41-year-old

    July 24, 2014

  • Rays Cardinals Baseball-6 [Duplicate] Wainwright stumbles, Cards lose 7-2 to Rays ST. LOUIS (AP) — Adam Wainwright felt he owed the St. Louis fans an apology after Tuesday night's 7-2 loss to Tampa Bay. The Cardinals' right-hander, fresh off a start for the National League in the All-Star game, completely fell apart in the fifth i

    July 23, 2014 4 Photos

Obituaries
Record
Facebook
AP National