Oscar Pistorius, who's currently standing trial in connection with the death of girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, is going to sell the home where she died in order to cover legal fees associated with his defense.
Sky News noted the former Olympian's decision:
AFP: Oscar #Pistorius says he will sell home where he shot girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in order to cover murder trial legal fees— Sky News Newsdesk (@SkyNewsBreak) March 20, 2014
Rohit Kachroo of ITV News provided comments from a lawyer for Pistorius, who said the sale had become necessary due to mounting costs:
Oscar Pistorius' lawyer: "It has become necessary to sell Mr Pistorius' home... to cover his increasing legal costs"— Rohit Kachroo (@RohitKachrooITV) March 20, 2014
Vanessa Banton of eNCA News added further information from a publicist about the extended length of the trial leading to the increased legal fees:
Oscar Pistorius' house on the market. Publicist says its been sold to help with legal costs, after trial was extended @eNCAnews— Vanessa Banton (@Zephilla) March 20, 2014
Steenkamp was killed in a bathroom last February. As a court affidavit shows, as presented by CNN, Pistorius claims her death was an accident as a result of mistaken identity as he believed an intruder had broken into the home during the night.
The Associated Press (via USA Today) reports the murder trial is going to exceed the initial three-week timetable that was provided, thus leading to further costs. Brian Webber, a member of the defense team, said Pistorius hasn't returned to the home since Steenkamp's death:
Webber adds that Pistorius has never returned to the house since he fatally shot Steenkamp in an upstairs bathroom in the pre-dawn hours of Feb. 14 last year. Webber says Pistorius "cannot contemplate ever returning to live there again." Webber says the house has remained "sealed" since it was handed back by police over a year ago.
No information was provided about how or when the home would be sold given the ongoing case involving an incident that took place inside. The villa is located in a Pretoria, South Africa gated community, according to the AP.
Brenden Nel and Corky Siemaszko of the New York Daily News report the prosecution is looking to wrap up their side of the case next week. If convicted of premeditated murder, Pistorius would then face a sentence of 25 years to life in prison.