Lifestyle & Belief

Arnold Pistorius, 'Blade Runner' Oscar's uncle, issues statement on the murder trial


A throng of reporters wait outside the Pretoria Magistrate's Court during Oscar Pistorius's first court appearance, Feb. 15, 2013.



Arnold Pistorius, the uncle of famed 'Blade Runner' athlete Oscar Pistorius, issued a statement Saturday about the murder accusations brought against his nephew in the wake of his girlfriend's death. 

Model Reeva Steenkamp, 29, was found dead of several gunshot wounds in Pistorius' upscale home in South Africa on Thursday, February 14.

"As you can imagine our entire family is devastated, we are in a state
of total shock - firstly about the tragic death of Reeva who we had
all got to know well and care for deeply over the last few months," Arnold said in his statement, obtained by GlobalPost. 

"All of us saw at first hand how close she had become to Oscar during that time and how happy they were," he added of the couple, who started dating in November. "They had plans together and Oscar was happier in his private life than he had been for a long time." 

More from GlobalPost: Oscar Pistorius: Hints of domestic problems

However, police spokeswoman Brigadier Denise Beukes suggested otherwise when he said Thursday that there had been recent "allegations of a domestic nature" at Pistorius' home, the Associated Press reported

The double-amputee Olympic athlete wept openly when he appeared in court on Friday, and his uncle said he is "numb with shock as well as grief." 

"We deeply regret the allegation of premeditated murder," Arnold added. "We have no doubt there is no substance to the allegation and that the State’s own case, including its own forensic evidence, strongly refutes any possibility of a premeditated murder or indeed any murder at all." 

Arguments over Pistorius' bail request will be heard Tuesday, the Los Angeles Times reported

More from GlobalPost: Pistorius shooting highlights South Africa’s crime problem