Thu. Apr 25th, 2024

Oscar Pistorius, the double-amputee Paralympic and Olympic sprinter, has been granted parole after serving nine years for the 2013 murder of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp. Released from Atteridgeville Correctional Centre in South Africa on Friday, Pistorius will be subject to parole conditions until his sentence expires in 2029.

The parole board’s decision, made in November, was based on Pistorius completing half of his original 13-year sentence, meeting the eligibility criteria under South African law. Singabakho Nxumalo, a spokesperson for South Africa’s Department of Correctional Services, confirmed Pistorius’ release.

Reeva Steenkamp’s mother, June Steenkamp, expressed her desire for peace following Pistorius’ release, emphasizing the irreparable loss caused by her daughter’s death. Despite forgiveness, she raised doubts about Pistorius’ rehabilitation, citing concerns for the safety of other women.

Pistorius, known as the “Blade Runner” for his carbon-fiber prosthetic legs, shot Steenkamp four times through a locked bathroom door on February 14, 2013. His claim of mistaking her for an intruder led to a high-profile trial, resulting in a manslaughter conviction in 2014, later upgraded to murder with a final sentence of 13 years and five months.

The parole conditions stipulate Pistorius’ participation in anger management and gender-based violence programs. Prohibited from media interviews, he is required to adhere to general parole conditions, including specific hours at home, abstinence from alcohol or prohibited substances, and engagement in board-identified programs.

As South Africa implements the “Restorative Justice” process, Pistorius will complete the remainder of his sentence within the community corrections system. The parole decision reignites public scrutiny over Pistorius’ rehabilitation and raises questions about the ongoing impact of this tragic incident on all involved parties.

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