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Oscar Pistorius’s Grueling Testimony: Will Contradictions Doom Him?

04/16/2014 at 12:35 PM EDT

There was a barrage of questions. Followed by another. And another.

For five long days, prosecutor Gerrie Nel relentlessly hammered Oscar Pistorius with blistering questions. Nel – nicknamed “The Pitbull” for his tough reputation and courtroom style – confronted Pistorius with contradictions in his testimony, trying to get him to admit that he intentionally killed girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp after a heated argument.

“She was locked in the bathroom and you armed yourself with the sole purpose of shooting and killing her,” Nel challenged, causing the South African star to tremble as he fumbled for an answer. “Afterwards, you were overcome by what you’d done. That is true. Only because you intentioned to kill her. You realized that.”

At another point, Nel asked the Olympian who he thought was responsible for the incident. “We should blame somebody,” he sarcastically said. “Should we blame Reeva? Who should we blame for the Black Talon rounds that ripped through her body?”

The courtroom has sat in hushed silence throughout the gripping cross-examination. Pistorius, wearing a dark suit each day, often rubbed his temples and choked back tears as he testified. At his feet has been an ever-present vomit bucket.

With his testimony behind him, Pistorius faces an uphill battle for acquittal. Rather than setting the record straight, the Olympian raised even more questions about what really happened in the early morning hours of Valentine’s Day, 2013.

Was The Shooting Accidental?

For the first three weeks of trial, the defense has maintained that Pistorius intentionally shot through the bathroom door at someone he thought was an intruder. That seemed to change during Pistorius’s testimony, when he insisted that the shooting would have been an accident, even if he had shot an intruder.

“It was all an accident?” Nel asked incredulously.

“That’s correct,” responded Pistorious.

“Your defense has now changed from self-defense to involuntary action,” Nel told him. “You can only have one defense, not two.”

Oscar Pistorius's Grueling Testimony: Will Contradictions Doom Him?| Crime & Courts, True Crime, Oscar Pistorius, Reeva Steenkamp

Reeva Steenkamp and Oscar Pistorius

Gallo Images / REX USA

Pistorius looked agitated. “I didn’t intend to fire but I fired,” he said. “I pulled the trigger. My firearm was pointing to where I perceived the danger to be. It never crossed my mind that shooting into the toilet would kill someone.”

Why Did Pistorius Yell?

Pistorius claimed to have yelled at the intruder. “I screamed and said ‘get the f— out of my house,’ he testified before dissolving into tears.

Prosecutors believe he shouted those words – not at an intruder, but at Steenkamp. “She was in fear for her life and trying to get away,” said Nel. Noting Steenkamp’s jeans strewn on the bedroom floor, Nel alleged that she had tried to flee her boyfriend.

“It is the state’s case that the jeans were on the floor as Reeva wanted to leave that night,” he said. “You had had an argument.”

Did He Run To The Balcony To Seek Help?

During a police interview, Pistorius claimed to have run to the balcony to scream for help. Nel presented Pistorius with a photo of the bedroom. “What’s wrong with this picture?” he asked.

There was an awkward silence as Pistorius examined the photo, which showed a large tripod fan in front of the door.

“The fan would have blocked me from running out onto the balcony,” he said softly.

“I agree,” Nel shot back. “Because your version was a lie.”

Other Inconsistencies

Pistorius was confronted with several more inconsistencies during his testimony. After he stated that he thought he had seen Steenkamp in the bed before getting up, the prosecution asked how that was possible.

“The room was pitch black,” said Nel. “You couldn’t see a thing.”

Later, Pistorius testified that Steenkamp had last eaten at 7 p.m., more than eight hours before the shooting. An autopsy showed that she had eaten just two or three hours before her death. Pistorius then conceded that she might have gone downstairs and eaten while he was sleeping.

“By your own account, the burglar alarm was on,” said Nel. “It would have been triggered by her leaving the room. Your inconsistencies are devastating.”

A Bittersweet Valentine

The defense had one positive note as Pistorius wrapped up his harrowing week on the stand. After Nel contended that none of the text messages between Pistorius and Steenkamp included the phrase, “I love you,” Pistorius’s defense lawyers handed him a Valentine’s Day card that Steenkamp had written.

Pistorius read it aloud with a clear, loud voice. “Roses are red, violets are blue. I think today is a good day to tell you that I love you.”


Source: Oscar Pistorius’s Grueling Testimony: Will Contradictions Doom Him?

Miley Cyrus Still in Hospital, Cancels Another Concert

04/16/2014 at 11:40 AM EDT

Miley Cyrus has canceled another stop on her Bangerz tour as she remains hospitalized for an allergic reaction to antibiotics.

The “We Can’t Stop” singer was scheduled to perform at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis on Wednesday night. But Wednesday morning, she sent a series of Tweets indicating she isn’t well enough to continue.

“I can’t get a hold of my team because it is so early so I want to be the one to tell my fans especially the ones trekking to get there,” Cyrus, 21, wrote, adding, “the hospital is saying i wont b released today therefore im not going 2 make it 2 St. Louis. Im so sorry but somethings are outta my control.”

The venue’s website confirms the concert’s cancelation and offers information on ticket refunds.

Cyrus first canceled Tuesday’s show at the Kansas City Sprint Center after she was put on medical rest. She also pulled the plug on a performance in Charlotte, N.C., earlier this month, saying she had the flu.


Source: Miley Cyrus Still in Hospital, Cancels Another Concert

Jenny McCarthy Engaged to Donnie Wahlberg

Breaking News

04/16/2014 at 11:15 AM EDT

Jenny McCarthy Engaged to Donnie Wahlberg

Donnie Wahlberg and Jenny McCarthy

Larry Busacca/Getty

There’s a new bride-to-be on the block!

Jenny McCarthy announced on The View Wednesday that Donnie Wahlberg popped the big question (and presented her with a big rock) and she happily said yes.

“I just got engaged!” the star said on the show as she unveiled her hidden hand from behind the desk and then proceeded to jump around the set. “It’s a yellow sapphire,” she explained about the rock.

Crying as she told about the proposal, McCarthy said her son Evan helped with the surprise last weekend, and how Wahlberg – who ended up coming onto the TV set Wednesday and kissing McCarthy – had gotten down on one knee.

“We don’t know yet,” she said when asked about the wedding date. Barbara Walters said if they tie the knot in September next year – McCarthy said that August was one consideration – the wedding could be held in her apartment.

The couple raised eyebrows when they first started dating last summer. But McCarthy, 41, and Wahlberg, 44, instantly found a connection.

One trait they share is “our work ethic” McCarthy told PEOPLE last fall. “He understands my work schedule and he has his and I get it. And we’re both single parents and he’s trying to juggle all of that while I am too,” she says.

Now they will add wedding planning to their breakneck schedules. While McCarthy is taping her daytime talk show in New York City, the Blue Bloods actor recently finished filming season 4 of the series and will be busily preparing to mark the 30th anniversary of New Kids on the Block in Las Vegas in July.

This will be the second marriage for both. Wahlberg has two sons from his nine-year marriage to Kim Fey, which ended in divorce in 2008.

McCarthy’s son Evan is from her marriage to director John Asher, whom she divorced in 2005.


Source: Jenny McCarthy Engaged to Donnie Wahlberg

Robin Roberts Feels Like She’s a ‘Walking Miracle’

People Exclusive

04/16/2014 at 08:00 AM EDT

After facing cancer twice, Robin Roberts is not only still standing, she’s stronger than ever.

“I feel like I am a walking miracle,” the Good Morning America anchor and breast cancer survivor tells PEOPLE exclusively in this week’s issue.

Speaking more candidly than ever before, Roberts, 53, opened up about the challenges she faced after she was diagnosed with a blood and bone marrow disease called myelodysplastic syndrome in 2012.

“A doctor told me I had one to two years to live without a transplant,” she says, and explains why she is speaking now about all of the people who loved her through it, including her girlfriend of nine years, Amber Laign.

“How could I not?” says Roberts about acknowledging (in her upcoming memoir Everybody’s Got Something and in a Facebook post last December) 39-year-old Laign’s role as her caregiver.

“Even though Amber is someone who shies away from the spotlight, it was important for me to let people know I have this person in my life,” Roberts, who also prefers to be private, tells PEOPLE.

Roberts also revealed she still receives low-intensity chemotherapy shots every six to eight weeks and will continue to do so until the second anniversary of her bone marrow transplant later this year.

Though there is a risk of a relapse, Roberts says, “I look at what I did as a cure, not just as a stopgap measure. I have to hold onto that. Otherwise it would rob me of who I am.”

So far Roberts, who returned to the air last year, seems to be in the clear.

“I can go to the doctor now and not have to hold my breath as much when they’re drawing blood and I’m waiting for the results to come back,” she says. “I can be sick now like everybody else and it doesn’t mean I’m going to land back in the hospital.”

For much more from Roberts, including her thoughts on the changes on her show, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday


Source: Robin Roberts Feels Like She’s a ‘Walking Miracle’