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‘Blade-runner’ Pistorius facing more charges in death of girlfriend

Oscar Pistorius

Oscar Pistorius

JOHANNESBURG — Paralympic gold medallist Oscar Pistorius will face new charges of recklessly discharging a weapon in public when he appears in a South African court next week accused of murdering his girlfriend, local media reported Friday.

Neither prosecutors nor lawyers for Pistorius would comment on the reports carried by TV broadcaster ENCA, radio’s Eyewitness News and the national SAPA news agency, citing law enforcement officials.

They said he would face the new charges for allegedly discharging a weapon in a restaurant in January and from a car while driving home from a holiday. Both incidents are alleged to have happened before his girlfriend was killed.

The hearing Monday is expected to be swift and procedural, with the case moved to a high court and a date set for the start of his trial, legal sources have said.

The double-amputee, known as “Blade Runner” for the prostheses he wears in competition, has admitted to firing four shots through a bathroom door at his Pretoria home, hitting his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, 29, in the head, arm and hip.

Pistorius said in an affidavit presented at a magistrates’ court the shooting on Valentine’s Day had been a tragic mistake and he was acting in self-defence against what he thought was an intruder.

Prosecutors accused him of premeditated murder for killing Steenkamp, a model and budding reality TV figure.

Pistorius, 26, was one of the most celebrated athletes of the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics in London, making the Olympic 400m semi-final and winning Paralympic gold over the same distance.