Fans Send Messages Of Support To Former Paralympian Oscar Pistorius As Sentencing Set To Happen In June

It turns out former Paralympian Oscar Pistorius has quite the fan following. On the eve of his brief appearance in the Pretoria High Court on Monday, the messages of support came streaming in.

It was confirmed by the National Prosecuting Authority a while back that sentencing procedures would take place over a period of four days, from June 13 to 17.

As reported by the Independent Online, while he will only face sentencing in June this year, Pistorius, 29, had to briefly appear in court on Monday. The appearance was brief as reportedly expert reports are not yet ready to be presented to court.

After Pistorius was convicted of culpable homicide in the shooting of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, through the closed bathroom door of his home on Valentine’s Day in 2013, the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) overturned the judge’s decision at the end of last year, changing the verdict to murder.

The SCA judges made it clear, however, that Judge Masipa had conducted herself with dignity and was professional during the trial, but that she had simply made an error in law when convicting Pistorius of culpable homicide.

The proceedings on Monday were reportedly brief, with the parents of Reeva Steenkamp not expected to appear in court. The session was merely held to allow the State and the defense to inform the court as to how far their reports have gone, as these will form a vital part in the sentencing proceedings. The evidence will include a series of expert reports to be presented to the court in June this year.

When Pistorius appeared in the Pretoria High Court on Monday morning, his case was postponed to June 13 for sentencing. The former Paralympian sat with his head bowed in the dock, only speaking when the Pretoria Judge President Aubrey Ledwaba asked him if he understood he would be back in court in June.

Pistorius was only accompanied by his sister Aimee and father Henke in court. Pistorius did complain through his lawyer, Samantha Jackson, that the electronic device monitoring his movements is faulty. Reportedly, this is the third device he has been issued with while under house arrest and it keeps going off, even though he is at home. Correctional services checked the device after the court adjourned.

Jackson applied to have Oscar Pistorius‘ bail conditions changed to allow him to leave his uncle’s mansion without prior permission from the police and reportedly the prosecutor, Gerrie Nel had no objections.

Under the law, the former Paralympian is likely to face a minimum sentence of 15 years. However, the judge can deviate from that sentence if there is compelling mitigating or aggravating circumstances.

It is, however, expected that Pistorius will receive a sentence of less than 15 years, taking into account the year he has already spent in jail before being released early under house arrest, after the initial five-year conviction of culpable homicide.

In the meantime, support has been pouring in for the former Paralympian on the Support for Oscar blog and on Twitter. One message on the blog, posted by a fan identified as Sara, read, “A jail sentence is the last thing you deserve and I hope no one gets away with the terrible treatment they have subjected you to.”

Messages have poured in from all over the world, telling the former Paralympian to “stay strong.” Various tweets sent on the @SupportForOscar Twitter account are included throughout this article but besides the online support, and as reported by the Daily Mail, fans were seen to be holding signs emblazoned with the words “Je Suis Oscar” in the back of the courtroom while reportedly praying.

[Photo by Herman Verwey/Foto24/Gallo Images/Getty Images]