Friend testifies Oscar Pistorius fired gun out of car and in cafe
A friend of Oscar Pistorius testified Tuesday about two instances in which the former Olympian fired guns. Pistorius has been charged with firearms violations for both of the incidents.
The testimony came during Pistorius's murder trial in the shooting of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp. He has pleaded not guilty to premeditated murder as well as three firearms charges.
Darren Fresco testified that Pistorius shot a gun through a car's sunroof after having an altercation with police and that he was holding a gun when it fired in a busy Johannesburg restaurant months later. Pistorius has denied guilt in both events, which took place before Steenkamp's death on Feb. 14, 2013.
Fresco said Pistorius fired the gun out of the car's sunroof after he grew furious that a police officer had handled his licensed gun that was visible on the car's seat during a traffic stop. Fresco testified that Pistorius later fired the gun in anger without warning.
"'You can't just touch another man's gun,'" Fresco recalled Pistorius telling the traffic officer. "Now your fingerprints are all over my gun. So if something happens, you're going to be liable for anything that happens."
"Without prior warning, he shot out the sunroof," Fresco, who was driving, said of Pistorius, who he said was in the passenger seat.
Fresco said he "instinctively" moved over to the right side of the vehicle and away from where the gun was shot, and then asked Pistorius if he was "mad."
"He just laughed," Fresco recalled. "But it felt as if my ear was already bleeding."
Fresco's description corroborated much of the previous testimony of Pistorius' then-girlfriend Samantha Taylor, who was in the vehicle when Pistorius fired the gun out of the sunroof. Fresco also testified that Pistorius asked him to take the blame when a Glock 27 .40 caliber pistol fired while the pair exchanged it under the table of a busy Johannesburg restaurant in January of 2013.