The Slatest

Oscar Pistorius Sentenced to Five Years, May Only Serve 10 Months

A police van takes Pistorius to prison.

Photo by Mike Hutchings/Reuters

Oscar Pistorius—who was cleared of premeditated murder charges but found guilty of a lesser “culpable homicide” charge for shooting his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp—has been sentenced to five years in prison in South Africa. Pistorius has been taken to prison, though how long he’ll have to serve before being eligible for release is disputed. From the New York Times:

The athlete’s defense team said the law under which he was punished calls for him to serve only one-sixth of the prison term — 10 months — before he can be placed on house arrest. He was also given a suspended three-year term on separate firearms charges.

But some South African legal experts said the conversion of prison time to house arrest was not automatic and required negotiations with the correctional authorities. After serving half the sentence, Mr. Pistorius can also apply for parole.

Pistorius shot Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day in 2013. Steenkamp’s parents were present in court today, and her father told reporters he was “very satisfied” with the sentence.