Pistorius charged with murder

Hereford Times: Oscar Pistorius will appear in a Pretoria court this afternoon Oscar Pistorius will appear in a Pretoria court this afternoon

Paralympic gold medallist Oscar Pistorius has been charged with murder following the death of his girlfriend this morning.

Pistorius will appear in a Pretoria court at 2pm local time (1200GMT) when police said they would oppose a bail application.

Pistorius, 26, is alleged to have killed his 30-year-old girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, who died of gunshot wounds at an address in the city.

Police spokeswoman Brigadier Denise Beukes said at a press conference: "A 26-year-old man has been arrested and has been charged with murder. At this stage he is on his way to the district surgeon for a medical examination and he will be appearing at Pretoria magistrates' courts at 2pm this afternoon."

Brigadier Beukes said police were aware of media reports the death may have been an accident, caused by suspicions of a break-in, but said that those reports did not come from information provided by police.

"There was no sign of forced entry or persons who weren't supposed to be there at this stage," she said. "The South African Police Service was surprised to hear allegations on the radio this morning that the deceased had been perceived to be a burglar. The allegations did not come from us. The deceased was a friend of his."

She added: "There are witnesses and they have also been interviewed this morning. We're talking about neighbours and people that heard things that happened earlier in the evening and when the shooting took place."

Ahead of this afternoon's court hearing, the spokeswoman said: "We will be opposing bail applications. The person will be bringing a bail application."

Police have yet to name Pistorius as the man under arrest but said he was at the police station today. The spokeswoman said of the man arrested: "At this stage there is no other suspect involved."

A spokesperson for Pistorius from the Fast Track agency in London told Press Association Sport that the athlete was "assisting the police with their investigations".

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