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Barry Steenkamp breaks down in tears as he takes to the stand at Oscar Pistorius hearing

hellomagazine.com

The father of Reeva Steenkamp, who was killed by Oscar Pistorius three years ago, has spoken of his family's heartache following her death and said that the athlete "must pay for his crime".

Barry Steenkamp took to the stand on Tuesday, the second day of Oscar's sentencing hearing, and with tears streaming down his face told the court that he still thinks of his daughter "morning, noon, night… all the time".

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Barry Steenkamp was overcome with emotion as he spoke about his daughter

"From that day, it's affected (wife) June and my family so much… Our lives have changed completely. It's very difficult to explain… I don't wish that on any human being. Finding out what happened, it devastated us. I ended up having a stroke. I don't wish that on anybody in the whole world."

In his emotional testimony, Barry said that both he and his wife have been able to forgive the man who killed their daughter because of their Christian faith, but he added: "Oscar has to pay for what he did. He has to pay for it… That is up to the court. And we will go by the decision that the court hands down to Oscar. But he had to pay for his crime".

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Oscar's hearing is expected to conclude by Friday

Barry also said that his wife June has been depicted in some media reports as a "stone-faced woman".  "But I hear her crying at night," he said. "I hear her talking to Reeva. She feels just as much as I do."

The sentencing hearing, which is expected to conclude by Friday, will determine whether Oscar will face a jail term of 15 years for killing Reeva.

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The athlete could face up to 15 years in jail for Reeva's murder

The 29-year-old shot Reeva in the early hours of Valentine's Day in 2013 after firing four times through a locked toilet door. He has always maintained that he believed he was shooting an intruder.

Oscar was initially jailed for five years for manslaughter in 2014, and was released from prison after a year to serve out the remainder of his sentence under house arrest. His conviction was later changed to murder after an appeal by the prosecution.

 

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