Oscar Pistorius’s murder trial was on Tuesday set to hear more details on the autopsy of his slain girlfriend, a day after the star sprinter threw up as he listened to a graphic account of the gunshot injuries he inflicted on his lover.
Forensic pathologist Gert Saayman was due to wrap up his testimony in the High Court before defence lawyer Barry Roux will start with cross-examination.
On Monday 27-year-old Pistorius retched loudly into a blue bucket as Saayman detailed the wounds that caused the death of the Paralympian star’s girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.
Pistorius shot Steenkamp four times with a nine millimetre pistol on Valentine’s Day last year in what prosecutors charge was premeditated murder and he says was an accident.
The 29-year-old model and aspiring actress was hit once in the top right of her head, once in the right elbow and once in the right hip. She was also struck in the webbing of her left hand.
Any of the head, arm or hip wounds could have caused her death, Saayman said in testimony the media were banned from reporting live, including on Twitter.
The double-amputee used “Black Talon” hollow-point bullets, which mushroom open like a jagged flower on contact to cause maximum tissue damage, according to the post-mortem report.
Partially digested vegetables in the model’s stomach also suggested she ate less than two hours before her death around 03:00 am.
Pistorius’s defence team will have to explain how his lover ate two hours earlier if the couple had gone to bed at 10:00 pm the previous evening, as he has said.
His lawyer Barry Roux, notorious for his aggressive interrogation style, is expected to question the conclusion that Steenkamp ate in the early morning hours.
The Paralympian says he fired four shots at Steenkamp on February 14, 2013 through a locked toilet door, mistakenly believing her to be an intruder.