Sleuths hit back over Oscar bat-bashing theory
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Johannesburg - The authors of a sensational new book that pokes holes in the testimony of convicted Paralympian Oscar Pistorius - and in the “illogical” State’s case against him - believe they have “touched a nerve” with his irate family.
On Friday, the Pistorius family issued a statement, labelling the Mollett brothers as “armchair sleuths” and their book, Oscar vs The Truth, as “another attention-seeking, money-making exercise”.
This came after their startling claim that Pistorius beat his model girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp with a cricket bat before firing the fatal shots through the locked toilet door of his Pretoria home that ultimately killed her.
Pistorius’s family stated that Calvin and Thomas Mollett were “two citizens with detective fantasies who have a history of latching onto high-profile cases after the fact”.
“We’re presenting an argument and, if somebody has a problem with it, they must come back to us with a factual argument,” said Thomas, from his home on the West Coast. “We always knew we were going to be attacked. We’ve been called worse than armchair hobbyists. It’s water off a duck’s back. I would be more concerned if they didn’t say anything - obviously we’ve touched a nerve.
“I’m not saying we’re right on everything. It’s about the principle of scientific method. If you disagree with someone, come back on a factual argument. You can’t come back with name-calling... Have they even read the book?”
In their book, they maintain that evidence shows an argument happened on the night of the killing, based on the evidence of a female neighbour who heard an argument break out in the early morning hours. As Steenkamp fled from Pistorius, he struck her twice with the cricket bat before using it again to break down the bathroom door.
The proof was in two oval-shaped bruises on Steenkamp’s back, which were previously attributed to her falling on a magazine rack as she was shot, but these, believe the brothers, could have been made by the corner of the bat.
During his trial, Pistorius claimed he shot Steenkamp in a case of accidental self-defence as he thought she was an intruder and he used the bat instead to smash the locked toilet after he realised he had mistakenly shot her.
The Paralympian’s family said it had no choice but to react to the claims based on the “totally discredited argument theory” and “outrageous allegations”.
“Despite three years of an often-vicious parallel trial against Oscar in the public domain, we as Oscar’s family have scrupulously refrained from commenting on the many outrageous and spurious allegations that have been bandied about in the media as well as legions of self-appointed armchair jurors.
“Their so-called investigation is based on what they claim to be 'new' evidence. There is no new evidence. Every photograph was presented and every shred of evidence was dissected in the intensive 43-day trial. It is totally absurd to suggest the State prosecutor and his high-powered team, who were so intent on proving their premeditated theory, would have overlooked any evidence that could prove that Oscar used his cricket bat for anything other than bashing open the door.”
Mollett acknowledged he felt some “discomfort” about how the bat theories were presented in the media this week, as it was “not in the full context”. But he disputed all the evidence had been presented in court. “It’s about how the evidence was overlooked, ignored and, importantly, it was badly interpreted. There’s still the matter of the level of argument, the missed questions and bad interpretation. If (State prosecutor) Gerrie Nel came back with measurable arguments, they would have had a better chance. Aggression doesn’t win cases, facts win cases.”