(CNN) South African Paralympic runner Oscar Pistorius was denied parole on Friday, according to local authorities who said he had not yet completed his minimum sentence.
Under South African law, inmates can be considered for parole after serving half their sentence if they meet conditions, such as good behavior in prison.
The former Olympic sprinter shot his partner Reeva Steenkamp four times through the bathroom door of his home in 2013, denying he killed her in a fit of rage and saying instead he mistook her for an intruder. He was originally sentenced to 13 years and five months in prison.
South Africa’s Correctional Services spokesperson, Singabakho Nxumalo, told CNN that Pistorius’ application for parole had not been granted because he was not yet eligible — an issue that the country’s High Court of Appeal clarified earlier this week.
“The Parole Board has granted Mr. Pistorius an additional profile for the month of August 2024 and the reason for this is that Mr. Pistorius has not yet served the minimum detention period pursuant to the Supreme Court of Appeals Clarification Order, which was only made available to the Department on March 28, 2023,” Nxumalo said.
Pistorius must now continue serving his sentence until a new parole hearing in August 2024.
The parole board’s decision was quickly applauded by Steenkamp’s parents, who opposed early release, according to their lawyer.
Their attorney, Tanya Quinn, told CNN, “While we welcome today’s decision, today is no cause for celebration. We miss Riva terribly and will do so for the rest of our lives. We believe in justice and hope it continues to prevail.”
In 2018, the athlete’s father, Henk Pistorius, told The British Times newspaper He ran Bible classes and prayer groups for prisoners, including the leader of the prison’s most feared gang.
To be eligible for parole, Pistorius had to take part in South Africa’s “restorative justice” process, which gives offenders the opportunity to “come to justice and accept their actions”.
A trial followed around the world
The athlete — who was previously honored as an inspirational figure after competing in the 2012 Olympics — has become the center of an experiment that has been followed around the world.
During the trial, Pistorius pleaded not guilty to one count of first degree murder and one count of firearms connected to Steenkamp’s murder.
Prosecutors argued that her killing was premeditated and that the shooting occurred after an argument between the spouses.
He frequently broke down in court and his past behavior was closely scrutinized.
Pistorius was convicted of manslaughter in 2014 and sentenced to five years in prison. But a higher court The conviction was overturned and converted to murder A year later, he raised his sentence to six years in prison.
The sentence was appealed by prosecutors who claimed the sentence was too light. It was Pistorius’ sentence Increased to 13 years and five months by the Supreme Court of Appeal of South Africa in 2017.
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