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‘Reeva first shot in hip’

Pretoria: Oscar Pistorius’ girlfriend was first shot in the hip, not the head, a South African police ballistics expert told his murder trial on Wednesday, supporting the testimony of earlier witnesses who said they heard screams during a volley of shots.

Pistorius’s defence has argued Reeva Steenkamp was first hit in the head and could not have continued to scream.

Prosecutors are seeking to prove that Pistorius fired four rounds through the door from a 9 mm pistol, in a deliberate attempt to kill. If found guilty of murder, he faces a minimum of 25 years behind bars.

Police ballistics expert Christian Mangena said he believed Steenkamp had been standing behind the door when the first bullet struck her hip, causing her to fall down on top of a magazine rack next to the toilet seat.