Oscar Pistorius is a “broken” man who should not return to prison, according to a psychologist speaking in mitigation at the Paralympian’s sentencing hearing.
Professor Jonathan Scholtz argued that the South African, who faces a 15-year jail term for the murder of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, should be in hospital rather than jail.
The psychologist claims that Pistorius has been suffering from worsening depression, anxiety, paranoia and social phobia since the original trial over Steenkamp’s death.
“[It] would not be psychologically or socially constructive,” Scholtz told the court on day one of the hearing.
“Mr Pistorius would be better served… if he gave back in a positive and constructive way, using his skills.”
The 29-year-old was originally sentenced to five years in prison after being found guilty of culpable homicide (manslaughter), but his conviction was upgraded to murder in December.
The length of his sentence could be reduced due to the time that he has already served, as well as mitigating circumstances, such as disability, good behaviour and his mental condition.
Pistorius, who shot Steenkamp dead through a bathroom door in 2013, maintains that he mistook his girlfriend for an intruder and is not guilty of murder.