Accused Paralympic athlete Oscar Pistorius will "suffer" alone if he is lying, the father of his slain girlfriend said in an interview with a South African newspaper. NBC's Michelle Kosinski reports.
Accused Paralympic athlete Oscar Pistorius will “suffer” alone if he is lying, the father of his slain girlfriend said in an interview with a South African newspaper.
Barry and June Steenkamp, mother and father of deceased 29-year-old model and law school graduate Reeva Steenkamp, told the Afrikaans-language paper Beeld that they were grief-stricken by the loss of their daughter.
“It doesn’t matter how much money he has and how good his legal team is, he will have to live with his conscience if he allows his legal team to lie for him,” Barry Steenkamp told Beeld.
“But if he is telling the truth, then perhaps I can forgive him one day,” he told the paper. “If it didn’t happen the way he said it did, he must suffer, and he will suffer … only he knows.”
June Steenkamp said she was sent a flower bouquet and card by Pistorius’ relatives.
“Yes, but what does it mean? Nothing,” she told Beeld. She said the Pistorius family was “not to blame” for her daughter’s death.
Pistorius’ family said that they felt “relief” to have the accused athlete home in a statement on Saturday.
“This constitutes a moment of relief under these otherwise very grave circumstances,” Arnold Pistorius, Oscar’s uncle, said in a statement. “We are extremely thankful that Oscar is now home.”
“We are acutely aware of the fact that this is only the beginning of a long road to prove that, as we know, Oscar never intended to harm Reeva, let alone cause her death,” the uncle said. “We realize that the law must run its course, and would not have it any other way.”
The family announced on Saturday that it was canceling all social media sites for Carl and Aimee Pistorius, Oscar’s brother and sister. Janine Hills, a spokesperson for the family, said that Carl Pistorius’ Twitter account had been hacked.
“It is most unfortunate that during this sensitive time, someone would choose to hack into Oscar Pistorius older brother, Carl Pistorius’ Twitter handle,” Hill said in a statement. “Carl did not tweet this afternoon, out of respect to Oscar and Reeva.”
There was no hint that the romance between Steenkamp and Pistorius would come to such a tragic end, the model’s uncle told Rock Center with Brian Williams.
“Nobody ever saw it coming,” Mike Steenkamp said. “Never forewarned.”
Pistorius, 26, is charged with premeditated murder in the Valentine’s Day shooting death of Steenkamp. Pistorius has said that the shooting was an accident, and that he thought he was shooting at an intruder in his Pretoria home. He was freed on bail Friday.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
This story was originally published on Sat Feb 23, 2013 8:35 AM EST