SOUTH African prosecutors will appeal against the verdict and sentencing of Oscar Pistorius, who was handed a five-year jail term after killing his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.

It comes as the model and law student’s mum June, who was born in Blackburn, had extracts from her new book published in a national newspaper.


Lancashire Telegraph: Oscar Pistorius denies the premeditated murder of his model girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp (AP)

In it, she recalls the night her daughter was shot, Pistorius’s trial and the moment the verdict was announced.

Mrs Steenkamp said she remembered screaming hysterically and sobbing uncontrollably when she received a call from a police officer telling her about what had happened to Reeva.

In the extract in The Times, she said how she asked the police if her daughter was alive or dead.

The officer replied: “I’m sorry. I’m afraid she has passed away.”

Mrs Steenkamp wrote: “He says he thinks it looks like an ‘open and shut’ case.”

She adds the officer said: “There were only two people present – your daughter and Oscar with the gun’.

Mrs Steenkamp talked about how she expected Pistorius to ‘take some responsibility’ during the trial but how she also had ‘no hate in my heart’.

She also wrote about the ‘thunderbolt’ that caused gasps throughout the courtroom when Judge Thokozile Masipa announced Pistorius was not guilty of murder.

Mrs Steenkamp said: “I didn’t look towards Oscar, but I later saw the television images of him heaving violently with relief.” Pistorius was found guilty of culpable homicide and sentenced to five years in prison.

A spokesman for South Africa’s National Prosecuting Authority said: “We are appealing it. Both conviction and sentence.”

Prosecutors will file papers in court and more details about their appeal arguments will be available at that time, the spokesman added.

Mrs Steenkamps book Reeva: A Mother’s Story is to be published by Sphere on November 6.