Pretoria - Police expressed “surprise” on Thursday at reports that the shooting at Paralympian Oscar Pistorius' house was an accident.
“The SA Police Service were just as surpised this morning to hear on the radio that allegations had been made that the deceased had been perceived to be a burglar,” police spokeswoman Brigadier Denise Beukes said.
“We were very surprised and those allegations did not come from us.”
Early on Thursday, Beeld newspaper reported on its website that Pistorius allegedly accidentally shot dead his girlfriend after mistaking her for a robber.
Police spokeswoman Captain Sarah Mcira confirmed this to Beeld, the report said.
Beukes was briefing reporters outside Silver Woods estate in Pretoria, where Steenkamp was shot dead in Pistorius' house in the early hours of the morning.
She did not name 26-year-old Pistorius, in accordance with SA law, but said he and Steenkamp were the only people in the house at the time of the shooting.
She said there was no sign of forced entry into Pretorius' house.
Beukes said bail for Pistorius would be opposed when he appears in the Pretoria Magistrate's Court later on Thursday.
“He will appear in court at 2pm and bail will be opposed,” she said.
“We are at this stage as the SA Police Services not able to disclose why are we opposing the bail,” said Beukes.
“I confirm there had been previous incidents of a domestic nature at his place but this will form part of the investigation.”
Beukes said forensic detectives were busy collecting evidence from the crime scene and journalists would not be allowed in until the police handed over the scene to the estate's security company.
Pistorius was held at the Boschkop police station earlier on Thursday, then taken to the Mamelodi Day Clinic and was expected to be taken to the court after that.
"When a person has been accused of a crime like murder they look at things like testing under the figure nails, taking a blood alcohol sample and all kinds of other test that are done. They are standard medical tests," Beukes said.
She said witnesses had been interviewed about the incident, which happened in the early hours of the morning.
"We are talking about neighbours and people that heard things earlier in the evening and when the shooting took place," she said. Earlier, police said a 9mm pistol had been found at the scene.
Pistorius was co-operating with police, she said.
Hours before she was killed Steenkamp posted a Valentine's Day tweet.
It read: “What do you have up your sleeve for your love tomorrow???”
Outside Pistorius's home, Steenkamp's model friend Mashadi Motsogi was in tears.
She had seen on Twitter that Steenkamp had been shot, but did not believe it.
“It was only on my way to campus when I saw journalists come in front of the estate, when I realised that it might be true, that she might be dead. I know Oscar stays here. When I called here, he did not reply. He did not answer my call.”
She described Steenkamp as a “friendly person, always willing to help other people”.
“She never snapped,” said Mogotsi, who had looked to Steenkamp, an established model, for advice.
“I have lost a friend,” she said, tears streaming down her face.
She said it did not make sense that her friend died in a secure complex.
“Look, security here is safe. We moved to this area for security reasons. It does not make sense to me that my friend was shot, mistaken for an intruder.” - Sapa