Slain model Reeva Steenkamp's mother walked into courtroom GD of the Pretoria High Court shortly before 9am. Photo: The Star

Pretoria - Reeva Steenkamp's mother June wishes she could have been there to protect her daughter when she was shot dead, she told ITV News in an interview televised on Tuesday.

“She's locked herself in the toilet and she's been shot and she's in pain and... I wish I could have been there to protect her,” she said.

“That's my child that I gave birth to and it's hard for me that she's dead, that she's gone. That was the time I broke down. The screaming, you know. That was my child there that was screaming, that was injured and dying.”

She said she was at the High Court in Pretoria on Monday to represent Reeva and wanted the man who shot her dead, Oscar Pistorius, to acknowledge her presence.

“I wanted to see him and him to see me. I just felt that I had to do that.

But he didn't look at me or anything. He just, he just walked straight and looked ahead.”

She said it was important to forgive and not let the anger “burn me up”, but added that she would not forget what happened.

She told ITV News that her husband Barry was not at court after suffering a stroke from the stress of Reeva Steenkamp's death.

“He is devastated, he can't deal with it anymore. It's just too much for him. It's been a build-up and build-up. He's got medication now to help him but he could never have been there today. He would probably have collapsed and maybe had another stroke.”

June Steenkamp was not in the High Court in Pretoria on Tuesday to attend the second day of Pistorius's trial.

He seemed more relaxed and on one occasion turned around to look at the public gallery and at the place where June Steenkamp was sitting the previous day.

He is charged with Steenkamp's premeditated murder and contraventions of the Firearms Control Act.

He shot and killed Steenkamp through the closed door of his toilet in his Pretoria townhouse on February 14 last year. He says he mistook her for an intruder.