As lawyers cry murder, Oscar Pistorius openly weeps in court
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Oscar Pistorius held his head in his hands and wept openly in court Friday as prosecutors said they would pursue a charge of premeditated murder against the Paralympic superstar.
Pistorius was formally charged at Pretoria Magistrate's Court with one count of murder after his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, a model and budding reality TV show participant, was shot and killed at Pistorius' upmarket home in the predawn hours of Thursday.
Prosecutor Gerrie Nel said Friday in court it was premeditated murder, indicating the prosecution would file that more serious charge, upgraded from murder.
The double-amputee athlete's arrest and murder charge has left South Africa reeling after the model's shooting death at Pistorius' house in an eastern suburb of the South African capital., Pretoria
Pistorius stood with his face in his hands as he broke down in tears on his first at the appearance Pretoria Magistrates' Court. The magistrate delayed Pistorius' bail hearing until next Tuesday and Wednesday and ruled that the 26-year-old Pistorius would be held at a police station in Pretoria until then. Police have said they oppose the granting of bail.
Pistorius had solemnly entered the court wearing a gray suit and blue tie and initially appeared composed.
Chief Magistrate Desmond Nasir presided over the hearing in a hot courtroom that was jammed more than 100 people, including numerous local and international journalists. More than 100 people packed into Courtroom C at Pretoria Magistrate's Court, including dozens of photographers and videographers. The magistrate ruled that no recordings of court proceedings would be allowed in the case.
Pistorius' father, Henke, was in the court as was his brother Carl, sister Aimee and other supporters of the 26-year-old double-amputee athlete.
Pistorius' brother laid his hand on Pistorius' shoulder inside the courtroom as the Olympic athlete and one of South Africa's most famous celebrities began to weep.