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Pistorius neighbour describes Steenkamp as a loving person

By The Citizen
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A neighbour of Oscar Pistorius on Tuesday described Reeva Steenkamp as a spontaneous and warm-hearted person.

Michael Nhlengethwa was testifying on behalf of the defence as the murder trial of the South African double-amputee Olympic sprinter went into its 27th day.

He told the Pretoria court he had once told Pistorius that Steenkamp was for keeps.

'I said to Oscar, this one is for keeps,'' he said.

'Pistorius told me of his plans to move from Pretoria to Johannesburg. 'I said if it's for her, I think it's worth it,' he added.

Nhlengethwa said even though the two did not socialise together but he occasionally chatted with Pistorius.

He said the athlete once presented him to Steenkamp, who 'just came and hugged me, she opened her arms. I could see the person that she was.'

Nhlengethwa said on the night of the murder, he was woken by his wife who told him she had heard a bang, and the two then heard a man screaming: 'No, please, please.'

He said he did not hear a woman scream.
His testimony supports the version of Pistorius' defence, which argues screams heard on the night of the murder were not uttered by Steenkamp, but by Pistorius himself.

If Steenkamp had screamed between the three shots Pistorius fired at her that would indicate he knew she was in the bathroom.

Nhlengethwa said when he finally found out what was going on and went out, 'I saw Oscar, he was leaning next to a lady, who was just lying down there.

'There is a blanket over her, he is just crying. It is was quite a difficult moment,'' he said.

The next two weeks are expected to see the defence wrap up its case before the final arguments by the end of the month.

If Pistorius is found guilty of premeditated murder, he could face a life sentence, meaning he will spend at least 25 years in prison. NAN