Oscar hits accuser with R2.2m claim
In a sequel to “Blade Runner” Oscar Pistorius having spent 17 hours in police custody following his arrest at his Silver Lakes home, the athlete has instituted a R2,2-million damages claim against a Pretoria student who accused him of assault.
But Cassidy Taylor-Memmory asked the Pretoria High Court yesterday to instruct Pistorius’s lawyers to hand over certain documents so she could defend herself against the allegations made by Pistorius in court papers.
The application was postponed indefinitely by agreement between the parties.
Acting Judge Jody Kollapen noted that Pistorius was to file his heads of argument by no later than March 1.
Pistorius spent a night in a Boschkop police cell on September 12, 2009, after the police arrested him at his home.
Taylor-Memmory, also from Silver Lakes, alleged he had assaulted her during a party at his home.
The Director of Public Prosecutions decided not to pursue the matter, stating it was believed Pistorius did not have the intention to assault the woman.
Pistorius said in court papers that on September 12, 2009, Taylor-Memmory maliciously filed a false complaint of assault against him, giving the police false information.
He said she had told the police he had aggressively closed or slammed his wooden front door, causing it to break and a piece of wood to strike her leg, he said.
She had alleged that he slammed the door with intent to do her grievous bodily harm, Pistorius said.
He said that Taylor-Memmory, in additional statements to the police, had first said he struck the wooden door with his fist, causing it to break.
In another, she said he had struck the door with an open hand.
She had given the police this information while knowing it was false, Pistorius said.
He said Taylor-Memmory knew that her repeated kicking of the door had caused the door to break, leading to the piece of wood striking her leg.
Pistorius was arrested at about 7pm and was released from police custody at 1pm the next day.
He said he was held in a general cell, along with other detainees arrested on a variety of charges.
He said he had a physical disability - his legs had been amputated below the knees and he wore a prosthesis on each leg, he said.
Because of Taylor-Memmory’s conduct, which led to his ending up in a holding cell, he felt threatened, humiliated, frightened, degraded, and vulnerable, Pistorius said.
The charge against him remained pending until October 8, 2009, when the State declined to prosecute.
Pistorius said he suffered damages of R2.2-million. The sum included R38 988 in fees incurred in defending himself against the charge, he said.
He also claimed R500 000 for deprivation of liberty and humiliation and R80 000 for lost income as he had to cancel two public speaking engagements because of his arrest and detention.
The first was speaking on behalf of Famous Faces for a R40 000 fee and the other speaking on behalf of Liberty Life, also for R40 000, he said.
Pistorius further claimed R1.6-million for loss of income as Nedbank and SYSPRO had refused to renew their “brand ambassador” agreement with him for last year. He said this was directly as a result of the charge against him.
Taylor-Memmory, in documents filed in the latest chapter of the saga, said she needed the documentation on which Pistorius was basing his allegations before she could defend herself in a written plea that was to be filed at court.
These included documents reflecting the cancellation of Pistorius’s speaking events and the termination of his Nedbank sponsorship for last year, as well as the conflicting statements he said she had made to the police.
It was stated on her behalf that Pistorius’s legal team were refusing to furnish her with these documents. - Pretoria News