Oscar Pistorius, the disgraced athlete, could be released from prison after prosecutors confessed they made a mistake in rejecting earlier requests for parole.
The Olympian and double amputee has been imprisoned in South Africa since being convicted of murdering model girlfriend Reeve Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day in 2013. Pistorius, now 36, claimed he mistook her for an intruder and that the shooting was a terrible error.
He was convicted of manslaughter, but the verdict was later changed to murder, and he was sentenced to 13 years and five months in prison. Pistorius has since submitted parole applications, which have been denied.
His case will be heard again on Friday, and a board will decide whether he is “suitable or not for social integration,” according to South Africa’s Department of Corrections.
In South Africa, serious criminals must serve at least half of their sentence before becoming eligible for parole.
The Supreme Court of Appeal eventually concluded in 2017 that Pistorius should serve South Africa’s minimum sentence of 15 years in prison for murder, but it took into consideration the year and seven months he had already served for culpable homicide when it handed down his new sentence.
However, the court erred by not adding additional term Pistorius served while his murder sentence was being appealed, which meant he was eligible for parole in March despite being told at his first hearing that he would not be eligible until August 2024.
Pistorius’ lawyers appealed to the country’s highest court, the Constitutional Court, which granted him a second hearing on Friday in recognition of the appeal court’s error.