Oscar Pistorius Murder Trial Update: Case Nearing End, Closing Oral Arguments to Take Place Aug. 7

The murder trial of South African sprint runner Oscar Pistorius is nearing its end as his defense team and prosecutors prepare to give their final and closing arguments on Aug. 7.

(Photo: Siphiwe Sibeko/Reuters)Oscar Pistorius trial nears its end as his defense team prepares for the final and closing arguments on Aug. 7

Since the beginning of his trial, Pistorius has been very consistent with his plea that he did not intend to kill his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, whom he fatally shot at his home in the early hours of the morning of February 14, 2013.

He claims that he thought Steenkamp was in bed at the time of the incident and that he thought there was a burglar in the house. Pistorius shot at the bathroom door four times, killing his girlfriend of three months, who was on the other side of the door.

Though he was granted bail on Feb. 22, his trial for murder began on March 3, 2014.

On May 20, the trial proceedings were adjourned until June 30 to enable Pistorius to undergo psychiatric evaluation to prove whether he was criminally responsible for shooting Steenkamp.

Forensic psychiatrist Merryll Vorster testified for the defense and said that she diagnosed Pistorius with generalized anxiety disorder, which stems from the amputation of both his legs when he was 11 months old. However, the trial resumed on June 30 after the evaluation reports said that Pistorius could be held criminally responsible.

During the court hearings, Pistorius has become very emotional at times, and has expressed great regret over what happened. He also disclosed that his family has been victimized by burglars in the past, and that contributed to why he felt so defensive and compelled to act on the night he killed Steenkamp.

If proven guilty, the sprinter could be imprisoned for life, or 25 years for good behavior. The defense team pleaded not guilty last March, and testimonies were presented to Judge Thokozile Masipa, who will give the final verdict in the case.