Transcript for Pistorius Witness Calls Him Danger to Society When Armed
This is a special group. Oscar the story s.'s own witness did him no favors today -- south African courtroom. But the blade runners lifelong taste for firearms makes him a danger to society. When arms. -- when I'm down Cutler in New York a dramatic day in court in South Africa as a psychiatric expert witness for the defense. So that our purpose stories may suffer from a mental disorder traceable back to the amputation of his legs when he was just eleven months old. ABC's Matt Gutman is in Pretoria with the latest. -- The -- -- is more likely to respond. To fight response. Rather than a flat response and a danger to people -- defense witness a psychiatrist Merrill Foster. -- a portrait -- -- -- Oscar historians beginning with the amputation of his -- When he was just eleven months old this type of procedure at this -- is perceived by infants as traumatic consult. Testifying off camera trying to explain to stories is itchy trigger finger that -- he shot his girlfriend -- Christine camp. Saying the blade runner had come from a broken home to. -- -- his mother was very anxious to listen and -- -- -- intermittently. Should stick to the -- under -- -- -- episodes in the piece that quote need to investigate noises she had hit he sought to protect himself she said to -- firearm for his own protection. At some stage he had to -- period as Tom Haas. And this resulted in him -- extensive security measures to -- property. And became obsessed with control. As he became more and more exposed. To being famous and -- media attention he would've had to pay more -- to use not to embarrass himself the anyway. The prosecutor pouncing -- somebody that. Suffering from general inside his order and with -- consist of making. It and -- person. Would be a danger to society fees as -- -- through them. -- -- turning the tables on the defense noting that it distorts his state of my idea is to be considered it would need to undergo further psychological evaluation. That movie modification. This quote will not have no. But -- -- missed the student who made the observation. That report coming from ABC's -- -- men in South Africa's I want to bring in now. Not -- co anchored ABC news chief legal analyst Dan Abrams talk about some of the details this case and -- debt was there even a chance even before today. That the stories was gonna find a third way out of this a mental illness defense. We'll remember in his argument is we're not asking for an end to. Orton is because the standard. But in this case is what a reasonable person would have to. And the defense is hoping that this judge will say what a reasonable person who had undergone. What Oscar -- -- had undergone. Would be thinking. And as a result that he might be more likely to use the weapon etc. now. You know what hey this is -- -- argument by the defense saying this was -- reckless shooting not intentional. If it was reckless that's -- conviction. On a lesser. Charge here but not murder and remember I said this before I'll say it again if Oscar for stories is convicted of the lesser charge what's called culpable homicide. I -- be a big win for him. In the total context -- this case now even if this case stays on current track or what what is the argument of the defense in providing this information about the sources mental state and how he suffered it again it goes to trying to show reasonable person who had undergone what he had undergone. Would have. Acted this way. It's a tough argument to make but look a lot is being made now. Of this idea that oh my goodness that a defense -- -- being. Turned around in being used by the prosecution and now they want. Him to undergo testing. To see will what his psychological state is according to -- other experts. -- want to minimize this witness but to some degree doesn't matter how much the bottom line news. Oscar the story -- his testimony. Was the heart of this case. This is about what was going on Oscar for story -- his mind. When he shot his girlfriend he admits he did. Answer the question is why. And yes the psychological -- for you can understand why the defense wants to provide some context of his life. But this is not going to be in my view. The make or break witness in this case well what are the other things that this witness had brought forward today in court was on the -- -- commented upon very often in the courtroom vomiting. The physical reaction that he had when he was looking at the testimony and and some of the evidence and it was a genuine sign of distress. Is that doing him any favors with this -- I think that that helps it. Honey it. Because the one thing she really -- testified to is his mental state now. And the prosecutor was very good about distinguishing. Between his mental state at the time and his mental state now. And yes it this witness can come forward and say yes since he's not faking it. But that doesn't tell us is he so disturbed because he's on trial for murder. And he's realizing the potential repercussions. Or is he so disturbed because he's a man falsely accused of murder. Who accidentally. Shot his girlfriend. So taking a step back now from the self slept with a gun under her pillow. I -- how much is that likely to have an effect on the outcome of this case again it goes again to reasonableness right and in essence its sort of the same legal standard very similar one. Do what would be applied here. But the question becomes a person in his situation. Meaning. Who had suffered what he suffered as a child and who was living in South Africa -- this particular community. What a reasonable person to -- and that's what the prosecution. Has been focusing so hard on trying to demonstrate. That you know while he may have had an and itchy trigger finger which was a real problem. Four in both in the past and currently. Didn't go to such Great Lakes to protect his home. He left doors -- he didn't update alarm systems issues like that. That prosecutors say show that this was not a manned -- issue is there is sort of waiting at any moment for someone to break into his home again prosecutors believe this was an argument. That he followed her into the bathroom. And shatter there. Added this has nothing to do. -- accidentally shooting her believing her to be an intruder dissecting the details of the case like no one else can Dan Abrams Dan thank you so much certainly it is time yet. This has been an ABC news digital special report and of course you can keep up. With the story -- -- -- case murder case in real time by downloading ABC news apps starring the story. For those exclusive updates on the go for on Dan that there -- New York.
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