Brenda Wardle is one of the most important journalists in South Africa. She has covered numerous cases throughout the country and is also holds many of the highest credentials available within the nation, so this allows her to follow important cases, trials and political issues. With the trial of Oscar Pistorius, Brenda Wardle proved to be a very important source of information for the outside world. While some of the trial did receive a nationally televised audience (such as the opening and closing remarks on the case), must of the middle, which did take weeks, did not have this kind of production or outreach. Due to this, for individuals wanting to know the news on the trial, Brenda Wardle provided exactly this.
The Oscar Pistorius trial proved to be, more or less, the O.J. Simpson trial for South Africa. Oscar Pistorius was one of the most important athletes to come out of South Africa in many years. This not only is due to his performance in the 2012 Summer Olympics, but due to him not having any feet or lower portion of his legs. Pistorius would run on specially crated prosthetics that looked more or less like elongated hooks. He received the nickname “Blade Runner” because of it.
On the night of Thursday, February 14,2013, Pistorius shot and killed his girlfriend Steenkamp, a model in South Africa, inside of their home’s bathroom. Him killing his girlfriend was never in dispute. He admitted as much. However, he stated he believed it was someone breaking into his house and so he pulled out his handgun and shot the individual in the bathroom.
Essentially, the case came down to whether or not Pistorius wanted to kill his girlfriend, or if he actually believed it was an intruder. He eventually was convinced of culpable homicide, which is the unlawful negligent killing of a human being. He also received the equivalent of reckless engagement, due to the discharge of a firearm. He received a max prison sentence of up to five years for the homicide, which would allow him to serve outside of prison under “correctional supervision” after 10 months in prison. He also received a three year prison sentence for the discharge of a firearm. That, however, would be served after the completion of his five year correctional supervision. Naturally, as Brenda Wardle points out, all of this is under the appeals process.