36 Year Old Rob Bironas, Ex-Tennessee Titans Kicker, Killed in Car Crash in Nashville, TN … Rest in Peace (Update: Reported Missing Prior to Fatal Accident)
SAD NEWS FROM THE NFL …
36 year old Rob Bironas, former kicker for the Tennessee Titans, was killed in an overnight car crash in Nashville, TN. According to accounts, Bironas was involved in a single vehicle crash in the 800 block of Battery Lane around 11 p.m. Saturday when he lost control of his SUV, went off the road and hit a line of trees before coming to a stop upside down in a culvert. The accident occurred less than a mile from his home. Metro Police spokesman Don Aaron said there was no evidence of alcohol on the scene. Rob Bironas was taken to Vanderbilt University Medical Center where he was pronounced dead. Rob Bironas was a long time fan favorite for the Titans. Bironas kicked for the Titans from 2005 until 2013, when he was released on March 19, 2014 prior to the 2014 season.
Our hearts and prayers go out to the family and friends of Rob Bironas. May the peace of the Lord be with you during these difficult times. He was one of the good guys.
January 29, 1978 – September 20, 2014, RIP
Former Tennessee Titans kicker Rob Bironas was killed in an overnight car crash in Nashville, Tenn.
He was 36.
According to Metro police, Bironas was involved in a single-vehicle crash in the 800 block of Battery Lane around 11 p.m. Saturday.
Bironas lost control of the SUV he was driving while traveling at a high rate of speed, and the vehicle went off the road and hit several trees before ending up in a drainage culvert, upside down.
Bironas was transported Vanderbilt University Medical Center and pronounced dead on arrival.
It is with heavy hearts that we confirm the passing of our friend, Rob Bironas. We appreciate your respect for the family’s privacy and your prayers at this time.
ESPN: Former Titan Rob Bironas dies.
Metro Nashville Police said Bironas, 36, lost control on a curve in his 2009 GMC Yukon Denali and crashed after 11 p.m. less than a mile from home. Police said in a statement on the department website that his SUV was speeding when it went off the road and hit a line of trees before coming to a stop upside down in a culvert.
Bironas was taken to Vanderbilt University Medical Center where he was pronounced dead. Police said there was no evidence of alcohol or drugs at the scene.
The Titans released Bironas in March after nine seasons. The Tennessean reported Bironas had worked out earlier this week for the Detroit Lions and for Tampa Bay during the offseason.
Bironas married Rachel Bradshaw, daughter of Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Terry Bradshaw, in June. Police spokesman Don Aaron said a police chaplain was with her after the crash
”We are deeply saddened to hear the tragic news from last night about Rob Bironas. Rob made a significant impact as a player in his nine years with the team and more importantly touched many lives in the Nashville community off the field. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife, Rachel, and his family during this very difficult time.”
UPDATE I: The Tennessean – Wife of Rob Bironas reported him missing Saturday night.
Rob Bironas’ wife, Rachel Bradshaw, did not realize her husband had left their Nashville home Saturday night, according to police records.
Former Titans kicker Bironas was killed in an overnight car crash in Nashville. He was 36. According to Metro police, Bironas was involved in a crash in the 800 block of Battery Lane around 11 p.m. Saturday.
Bradshaw called police Saturday night to report her husband was missing. She told a police officer that she and her husband had been watching a movie earlier that night at their home with a female friend.
Suspended Florida State QB Jameis Winston Warms Up in Pads During Pregame … Sent Back to Locker Room to Change by Frustrated Coach Jimbo Fisher
ARE YOU KIDDING ME … WHAT PART ABOUT YOU ARE FRIGGIN SUSPENDED FOR THE GAME DON’T YOU QUITE GET JAMEIS?
Simply amazing, this
kid punk just does not get it that rules apply to him. Suspended Florida St. QB Jameis Winston came out in full pads during pregame warm ups and was acting like nothing was the matter and this was like every game. Head shaking. Florida State Seminoles head coach Jimbo Fisher apparently was taken by surprise at Winston dressing out and sent Winston back to the locker room to change.
The Florida State Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback was suspended for Saturday night’s game against Clemson, but that didn’t stop him from showing up in full uniform during pre-game warm-ups. Tallahassee Democrat FSU beat writer Natalie Pierre tweeted out the following photo of Winston taking snaps with the Seminoles’ other quarterbacks.
Florida State QB & Heisman Trophy Winner Jameis Winston Has been Suspended for the Entire Game Against ACC Foe Clemson
Jameis Winston is out for the entire game against Clemson …
Florida State president Garnett S. Stokes and athletic director Stan Wilcox announced in a joint statement, “Based upon the results of our continuing investigation of Tuesday’s incident involving Jameis Winston, we have decided to not play him for the entire game against Clemson on Saturday night.”
Continuing investigation? Who is FSU kidding. The Seminoles have been guilted and forced into suspending their, all too often in trouble, quarterback Jameis Winston for the entire game because of pressure from alums, social media, the media from the fire storm that was created after their joke of a half-game suspension following Winston’s latest indiscretion. It would appear Winston has learned nothing from his past troubles. Then again why should he have, he has never been punished. One game is probably not even enough.
Winston’s suspension stems from a Tuesday incident in which he stood on a table and yelled an obscene phrase in the student union on Florida State’s campus. A number of students saw Winston yell the phrase and tweeted about what they saw.
Winston reportedly was not entirely truthful with Florida State officials when he was questioned about the incident. He then admitted the entire story. Thus the reason for the extended suspension.
NY Yankees’ Derek Jeter Goodbye Gatorade Commercial, ‘Made in New York’ … Class, Character and Hustle, He Did it His Way
AMAZING DEREK JETER TRIBUTE THAT WILL GIVE EVEN RED SOX FANS A CHILL … and oh by the way it was a Gatorade ad.
Let me just preface this by saying, I am and always have been a Boston Red Sox fan … For 20 years Derek Jeter has been the epitome of hard work, hustle, leadership, character and class. The captain of the New York Yankees takes a stroll though the Bronx to Yankee Stadium with the music stylings of the Chairman of the Board, Frank Sinatra’s, “My Way” playing in the background. Following such Yankee captain immortals like Babe Ruth, Lou Gerhig, and Thurman Munson, Jeter did it right in a time and age in the MLB where so many did it wrong. Thank you for the memories Derek, even though many of them were at the cost to the Sox. Baseball and the Yankees will be hard-pressed to replace such an ambassador to the game.
Jeter’s Yankee Stadium farewell begins Thursday night against the Blue Jays, who are in town for a four-game series. It is only fitting that Derek Jeter’s final games of his career will come against the Red Sox in Fenway Park on September 26, 27 and 28th.
I am hoping that the Red Sox fans show the respect and class for Jeter that he truly deserves and serenades him with a DEREK JETER chant.
Derek Jeter’s final homestand will be met with many emotional goodbyes from fans over the next week. But before he even made it to the ballpark Thursday, a Gatorade commercial anticipating and celebrating the Yankees captain’s farewell already had made its way onto the Internet.
The black-and-white ad follows Jeter on his way to the ballpark and watches him walk the last few blocks to Yankee Stadium. He greets some kids, stops by Stan’s Sports Bar and soon gets engulfed by fans near the gates before eventually tipping his cap in uniform outside the dugout.
All of it was choreographed to Frank Sinatra’s “My Way,” a song Jeter says he picked out himself.
“I’ve always liked the song,” said Jeter, who said Sinatra was an easy choice. “I thought it was fitting, I thought it fit for what I’m going through. I’m happy we used it.
Gatorade told Ad Week the spot was a “true collaboration” between the company and one of its most-recognized athletes, saying all the sports drink giant did was rope off blocks around Yankee Stadium to let Jeter mingle with fans. The reactions are genuine.
In conjunction with the ad, the company will run a full-page letter, addressed to the city and written by Jeter, in Sports Illustrated and the New York Daily News on Sept. 28 and 29.
Arizona Cardinals Running Back Jonathan Dwyer Arrested Wednesday on Domestic Violence and Aggravated Assault Charges
ARE YOU KIDDING ME … AND THE
HITS DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ASSAULTS KEEP ON COMING.
Second verse, same as the first … Arizona Cardinals running back Jonathan Dwyer has been arrested on assault charges. GOOD GRIEF. The charges against 25 year old Jonathan Dwyer include aggravated assault and preventing someone from calling 911, in connection with two altercations at his home in July involving a woman and an 18-month-old child. The alleged assaults occurred on July 21 at 8 a.m. and July 22 at 4 p.m. According to the police, Dwyer admits involvement in the incidents; however, denies assaulting anyone. has Dwyer has been deactivated from all team activities. Dwyer spent Wednesday night in jail before being released about 5 a.m. Thursday morning on $25,000 bond.
Arizona Cardinals running back Jonathan Dwyer has been arrested on assault charges, including aggravated assault and preventing someone from calling 911, it was revealed Wednesday evening.
Phoenix police said the charges stemmed from two separate incidents that are alleged to have occurred at his home in late July. A report was first made to the Phoenix Police Department on Sept. 11, and when detectives questioned Dwyer, he admitted to the incidents but denied any physical assaults, police said.
Dwyer was being booked into the Maricopa County Jail on Wednesday on one count of aggravated assault causing a fracture, one count of aggravated assault involving a minor, two counts of criminal damage, one count of preventing the use of a phone in an emergency, and assault, police said.
Neighbors heard a fight and called police, who showed up at the residence. Police Sgt. Trent Crump said Dwyer hid in the bathroom until police left. The next day, Crump said Dwyer snatched the woman’s cellphone and threw it from the second floor of their home to prevent her from calling police about another dispute.
The woman came forward last week, providing police with information about her injuries and text messages that indicated Dwyer “was going to harm himself because of what had been going on,” police said.
On July 21, Phoenix police were called to the home and were met at the door by the victim who denied there was anyone else in the home. She indicated she was in an argument on the phone. The officers left. Police later learned Dwyer was hiding in a bathroom at the home, Crump said.
On July 22, the victim tried calling 911 during a second incident, but Dwyer allegedly grabbed the cell phone and threw it from the second floor of their home to keep her from calling police, according to Crump. He also said after the alleged physical altercation, Dwyer threw a shoe toward the child.
In the wake of the alleged attacks, the victim, whose name hasn’t been released, left the state with their child, Crump said.
The victim, still living out of state, contacted Phoenix police on Sept. 11 with details about the injuries suffered during the alleged attacks. She alleged Dwyer has sent her a photo of a knife and also described threatening text messages she had received from Dwyer.
“We became aware of these allegations this afternoon when notified by Phoenix police and are cooperating fully. Given the serious nature of the allegations we have taken the immediate step to deactivate Jonathan from all team activities. We will continue to closely monitor this as it develops and evaluate additional information as it becomes available.”
Daily Commentary – Tuesday, September 16, 2014 – The NFL’s Elaborate Security Network Supposed to Stop Bad PR
- It is supposed to make sure the NFL leaders are not caught off guard
Daily Commentary – Tuesday, September 16, 2014 Download
NFL’s Carolina Panthers Guilted into Deactivating DE Greg Hardy Who was Found Guilty in July of Assaulting & Threatening His ex-girlfriend Nicole Holder
ALL EYES WERE ON RAY RACE … BUT THE NFL ONCE AGAIN DROPPED THE BALL ON DOMESTIC VIOLENCE WITH CAROLINA PANTHERS’ DE GREG HARDY …
Drip, drip drip … Yet another black eye for the NFL and Commissioner Roger Goodell. Just how many is it going to take before heads roll, other than the one’s of the victims? At what point will the NFL take any of this serious, when they lose millions in endorsements and have pressure from advertisers? Must it all be that cynical that these owners only care about money?
@nflcommish are you ready for some protest!?! #GoodellMustGo #BoycottNFL pic.twitter.com/3p4YnwN2F8
All the reports and news attention was on Ray Rice, former running back of the Baltimore Ravens, when TMZ released the VIDEO inside the elevator of Rice knocking out cold his then fiance and now wife, Janay Palmer. The focus of the discussion became, how did the NFL and Commissioner Roger Goodell not see this video prior handing out the pathetic two game suspension to Rice? How does an individual get paid $44 million a year and handle an investigation like this? It would be one thing if this was the only case that has been at the forefront of the NFL and domestic violence, or any violence for that matter. There was already the case of San Fransisco 49ers Ray McDonald and his domestic violence charges. Then most recently the indictment of Minnesota Vikings’ running back Adrian Peterson on child abuse charges.
BUT DID YOU KNOW ABOUT GREG HARDY? WHO?
Greg Hardy was found guilty in July 2014 in a Mecklenburg County, North Carolina courthouse of assault on a female and communicating threats. The conviction stemmed from a May 13 incident involving his former girlfriend said that she was attacked by Hardy who threw her on a bed covered in guns and “bragged that all of those assault rifles were loaded.” In the protective order request, the woman said Hardy picked her up and threw her into the tile tub area of the bathroom. He then dragged her into the bedroom, choked her, picked her up again and “threw me onto a couch covered in assault rifles and/or shotguns.”
The Carolina Panthers defensive end was sentenced to a 60-day suspended sentence and 18 months’ probation by judge Rebecca Tin. Hardy’s attorney says he will appeal and request a jury trial, and the terms of probation do not apply while he awaits an appeal by jury in Superior Court. That means Hardy’s ability to travel with the team and go to training camp is not affected, per The AP. Hardy had pleaded not guilty earlier Tuesday.
The Panthers released a statement, which read: “We have just learned of the verdict and are respectful of the process. We do not have a comment at this time.”
BUT GUESS WHAT, AS OF THIS MORNING, GREG HARDY HAD RECEIVED NO PUNISHMENT FROM THE NFL OR THE CAROLINA PANTHERS. AS OF THIS MORNING, HARDY WAS SCHEDULED TO PLAY THIS SUNDAY.
Enter ESPN, Outside The Lines (VIDEO) … Greg Hardy’s Domestic Violence Charge.
Here is a case that did go through the legal process, was adjudicated and Greg hardy was found guilty of assault. So what was the NFL, the Carolina Panthers or Goodell waiting for?
SURPRISE, SURPRISE, SURPRISE … In the face of the embarrassing ESPN OTL airing of this how the NFL has once again fumbled the ball on domestic violence against woman … the Carolina Panthers have deactivated Greg Hardy for today’s game. REALLY, How big of you.
The Carolina Panthers placed defensive end Greg Hardy on the inactive list for Sunday’s home opener against the Detroit Lions.
The move came two days after coach Ron Rivera said he planned to start the 2013 Pro Bowl selection, who was found guilty in July by a Mecklenburg County judge of assaulting and threatening ex-girlfriend Nicole Holder.
Team officials said they will not address Hardy’s situation or his future with the team until after the game.
The San Francisco 49ers are aware of the Panthers’ decision to deactivate Hardy but still plan on playing defensive tackle Ray McDonald, who was arrested on suspicion of domestic violence on Aug. 31, against the Bears on Sunday night, a team source told ESPN’s Jim Trotter.
Rivera said Friday the team hadn’t changed its stance on Hardy, who is appealing the verdict with a jury trial tentatively set for Nov. 17. Hardy’s attorney insists the case won’t be heard until 2015 because of the court’s case backload. Under North Carolina law involving defendants convicted of a misdemeanor, the jury trial will take place as if no previous trial took place.
“We are in a process and we’re letting the process play its way out,” Rivera said Friday. “Because of that, we’re following through with the situation, set of circumstances. We’re not trying to do anything below board or way above board. ”
Watch the ESPN “NFL Countdown” crew discuss the situation. Chris Berman says, “I am not really that surprised … they had to do it”. However, the best reaction and commentary to the Greg Hardy situation was from former Denver Bronco great Tom Jackson, ‘How could you allow Greg Hardy to be on the field, due process has played out, he’s convicted, he’s appealing, . We know the facts of the case, their undisputed. And were you going to find it as you took the temperature of public opinion were you going to find that you could put him on the field because he is important to you’re winning and losing.
Atheist Unhappy that Arkansas State Football Team Wore Cross Decal Remembering Deceased Player Markel Owens & Equipment Mgr. Barry Weyer, Jr … University Just Handed Atheists a Major Victory
WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO THE COUNTRY I GREW UP IN?
Let me just say the following, we are not a better country, nor a better people by continually allowing political correctness and Atheist thugs to dictate how we live our lives. The below story will show you just how far as a country we have fallen because every time a secular Atheist troublemaker makes waves, we cower. This has nothing to do with the “establishment clause” of the US Constitution, but instead everything to do with secularism looking to impose their ways on others and the others. If you think things have not changed in this country, and for the worse … think of the following. Think back to Nov. 14, 1970 and the plane crash that took the lives of nearly the entire Marshall football team and devastated a community. Remember the scene in the movie ‘We are Marshall’ where the coaches go to West Virginia and visit then Mountaineer head coach Bobby Bowden? That was a true story, discussed HERE by Bowden, and how so many years later he was brought to emotion. Do you remember the helmets that the University of West Virginia players were wearing, they had what on them? Who thinks back then any Atheist dare tell Bobby Bowden to remove the crosses from those helmets?
That was then, This is Now ... The Arkansas State University football team in Jonesboro Arkansas wore a small cross on the back of their helmets with the initials MO and BW in honor of their fallen team member and equipment manager, Markel Owens and Barry Weyer. Sadly, Weyed died in a car accident in June and Owens was shot to death in January 2014. The players thought it would be a special way to remember and honor both of them by placing a decal featuring their initials on the arms of a cross. According to Barry Weyer Sr., the father of one of the deceased being honored, “the players knew they were both Christians so they decided to use the cross along with their initials. They wanted to carry the spirits of Markel and Barry Don onto the field for one more season.” This is what sports and team work inspires.
But that was not acceptable to some trouble-making atheists who had no connection with the team, the players or those being remembered. An attorney contacted Arkansas State and told them they he was “uncomfortable” with the players wearing a cross decal and wanted it removed. Louis Nisenbaum, an attorney in Jonesboro, Arkansas, saw the team playing on television recently. He is the trouble maker who reached out to the university’s legal counsel to complain about the cross. Sadly, the gutless wonders and the legal department crumbled and allowed themselves to be bullied by atheist terrorists. When the hell are schools actually going to stand up for what is right, instead of acting like a bunch of ball-less wonders in the fact of secularism and Atheists?
Arkansas State University attorney Lucinda McDaniel agreed that the symbol was problematic, recommending that athletic director Terry Mohajir order it removed or alter it. Mohajir says after speaking with the university’s legal counsel they will modify the sticker removing any religious symbols, but keeping the initials. Gutless, just simply gutless.
In a statement released by the university, Mohajir stated:
“I am 100 percent in support of our coaches’ and players’ expression of faith, as well as their choice to honor the two individuals associated with our team who passed away by voluntarily wearing a cross decal on the back of their helmets. Unfortunately, we have received a complaint that use of the cross violates the Constitutional prohibition against separation of church and state.”
“After consulting with University counsel, we have been advised to either modify the decal or remove it completely. Thus, in order to ensure that we are in full compliance with Constitutional law, we will be modifying the decal to still honor the two individuals who are no longer with us.”
HOW IS THIS CROSS WITH INITIALS OF FALLEN TEAMMATES “ESTABLISHING A RELIGION?” It is not. It is honoring individuals who had died, nothing more, nothing less. The players VOLUNTARILY wore the decal on their helmets, THEY WERE NOT FORCED TO!!! The only thing that the player have been forced to do, is not wear the cross decal because of a belligerent, trouble-making and narrow minded atheist.
Athletics director Terry Mohajir said he wanted to fight the decision because the decal was intended to honor former player Markel Owens and equipment manager Barry Weyer, who both passed away this year. However, Mohajir said he had little choice but to follow advice from the university’s legal counsel to remove or modify the symbol.
“My job is to support our players and our coaches in their expression of any type of grief, and that’s what I was doing,” Mohajir told USA TODAY Sports. “Yes, it is unfortunate, and I am disappointed. However, we’re also going to uphold whatever legal advice we got, and that’s what we did based on the Establishment Clause of the U.S. Constitution. That’s what we were told we needed to do. So that’s what we did.”
Arkansas State, you might want to fire your legal council and get a backbone. At some point someone, some institution is going to have to stand up to these bullies. This cannot continue to happen.
Thanks Arkansas State, all you did by caving to Atheist thugs was to promote secularism and Atheism as seen by Freedom From Religion Foundation attorney Rebecca Markert comments when she told the outlet that the decision to remove the symbol is “great news” and that “putting religious imagery on public school property is unconstitutional.”
Minnesota Vikings’ Adrian Peterson Indictment in Child Injury Case … Warrant Issued for His Arrest (Update: Peterson Booked on Child Abuse Charge, Posts Bond)
AND ANOTHER BLACK EYE FOR THE NFL …
Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson has been indicted in Montgomery County, Texas for reckless or negligent injury to a child. The indictment is in regards to Peterson hitting his 4 year old son this past summer with a branch, referred to as a switch, as a form of punishment. Peterson states that this is how he was punished as a child. A grand jury seated earlier this summer decided not to charge Peterson with a crime. However, that was not the case with the new one. According to accounts, the incident resulted in multiple injuries to the child. The boy lives with his mother in Minnesota but was on a visit to Texas several months ago when Peterson disciplined him with the switch. Peterson was taken into custody at 1 a.m. Saturday in Montgomery County, Texas, and was released on $15,000 bond, according to NFL.com. If convicted, Adrian Peterson could face two years in prison.
Adrian Peterson has been deactivated by the Vikings and will not play this Sunday against the New England Patriots.
According to law-enforcement sources, Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson beat his 4-year-old son with a tree branch as a form of punishment this summer, an incident that allegedly resulted in multiple injuries to the child. According to reports, Peterson has been indicted in Montgomery County, Texas for injury to a child.
The “whooping” – as Peterson put it when interviewed by police – occurred in Spring, Texas, in May. Peterson’s son had pushed another one of Peterson’s children off of a motorbike video game. As punishment, Peterson grabbed a tree branch – which he consistently referred to as a “switch” – removed the leaves and struck the child repeatedly.
The beating allegedly resulted in numerous injuries to the child, including cuts and bruises to the child’s back, buttocks, ankles, legs and scrotum, along with defensive wounds to the child’s hands. Peterson then texted the boy’s mother, saying that one wound in particular would make her “mad at me about his leg. I got kinda good wit the tail end of the switch.”
Adrian Peterson’s lawyer, Rusty Hardin later released the following statement:
Adrian Peterson has been informed that he was indicted by a grand jury in Montgomery County, Texas for Injury to a Child. The charged conduct involves using a switch to spank his son. This indictment follows Adrian’s full cooperation with authorities who have been looking into this matter. Adrian is a loving father who used his judgment as a parent to discipline his son. He used the same kind of discipline with his child that he experienced as a child growing up in east Texas. Adrian has never hidden from what happened. He has cooperated fully with authorities and voluntarily testified before the grand jury for several hours. Adrian will address the charges with the same respect and responsiveness he has brought to this inquiry from its beginning. It is important to remember that Adrian never intended to harm his son and deeply regrets the unintentional injury.
The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office released the following statement on Friday evening:
On Thursday, September 11, 2014, a Montgomery County Grand Jury, “true billed”, Adrian Lewis Peterson on a charge of injury to a child. On today’s date at 2:47 PM, a warrant was issued and entered for the arrest of Adrian Peterson for that charge.
Since the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office has referred the case to the Montgomery County District Attorney’s Office, and the investigation has led to a, “true bill”, on a criminal offense, the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office will not discuss details in reference to the case or investigation.
At the time of this release, Adrian Peterson is not in custody at the Montgomery County Jail and the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office does not have any details in the arrest of Adrian Peterson.
Peterson’s team, the Vikings, released the following statement on Friday evening:
The Vikings are in the process of gathering information regarding the legal situation involving Adrian Peterson. At this time, we will defer further questions to Adrian’s attorney Rusty Hardin.
One of the darkest weeks in NFL history took another disturbing twist Friday when a warrant was issued in Texas for the arrest of Adrian Peterson, the face of the Vikings, over his treatment of one of his children.
Peterson faces an indictment accusing him of reckless or negligent injury to a child stemming from Peterson’s decision earlier this year to discipline his 4-year-old son by beating him with a ‘‘switch.’’
The Vikings responded by quickly deactivating Peterson for Sunday’s home opener against New England at TCF Bank Stadium. Peterson will surrender to Houston police, his attorney said.
Minnesota Vikings star running back Adrian Peterson turned himself in to Montgomery County, Texas, authorities early Saturday morning.
He was booked into the Montgomery County jail at 1:06 a.m. CT and released at 1:35 a.m. CT after posting the $15,000 bond.
Judge Thokozile Masipa Rules Blade Runner Oscar Pistorius Not Guilty of Premeditated Murder in the Death of Girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp … Still Faces “Culpable Homicide”(Update: Pistorius Found Guilty of Culpable Homicide)
Oscar Pistorius Found Not Guilty of Murder in Death of Reeva Steenkamp … Say hello to South Africa’s O.J. Simpson.
This morning Judge Thokozile Masipa ruled the Blade Runner, Oscar Pistorius, was not guilty of premeditated murder in the shooting death of his girl friend Reeva Steenkamp. The shooting took place on Valentine’s Day 2013. The judge ruled that the prosecution’s evidence to support a charge of premeditated murder was “purely circumstantial.” and “the state clearly has not proved beyond reasonable doubt that the accused is guilty of premeditated murder.” The judge went on to say that “there are not enough facts.” However, Pistorius is hardly out of trouble as he only has been found “not guilty” of the most serious murder charge. He still faces the lesser charges of “culpable homicide” in the shooting death of his girlfriend.
The judge presiding over the trial of Oscar Pistorius, the Paralympic athlete, cleared him of the two most serious murder charges against him on Thursday, almost certainly sparing him a long prison sentence. But then, after appearing to be on the verge of declaring Mr. Pistorius guilty of a lesser crime, culpable homicide, in the shooting death of his girlfriend, the judge abruptly suspended court proceedings for the rest of the day.
“We’ll have to stop here and resume tomorrow morning,” the judge, Thokozile Matilda Masipa, said less than half an hour after the session had resumed after a lunch break. She did not explain the adjournment.
Judge Masipa then turned to the lesser charge of culpable homicide, which is comparable to involuntary manslaughter, and said Mr. Pistorius had failed three tests to be exonerated of the charge. One considers what a “reasonable” person would have done under the same circumstances.
Reuters – Africa: Pistorius cleared of murder, culpable homicide verdict to come.
“I am of the view that the accused acted too hastily and used excessive force. It is clear that his conduct was negligent,” she told the packed courtroom before adjourning until Friday. She also said he had not acted “reasonably”.
Earlier, Masipa ruled that prosecutors, led by the combative Gerrie Nel, had failed to prove the 27-year-old intended to kill Steenkamp after an argument.
The defence said Pistorius shot Steenkamp as a result of a tragic accident after mistaking her for an intruder hiding behind a locked toilet door.
As Masipa delivered her not-guilty decision on the primary charge of premeditated murder, Pistorius, who would have faced at least 25 years behind bars if convicted, sat sobbing in the dock, tears streaming down his cheeks.
Culpable homicide – the South African equivalent of Britain’s manslaughter – carries up to 15 years in prison but has no minimum sentence.
Although Masipa described Pistorius as a “very poor” and “evasive” witness, she said it did not mean he was necessarily guilty in a case heavily reliant on circumstantial evidence
ABC News: Judge Masipa called Pistorius a “very poor witness” during the murder trial and found he was at times vague and avoided answering some of the prosecution’s questions. Despite that, she says this does not necessarily indicate his guilt. From the wording of the judge’s decision in the not guilty verdict of murder and premeditated murder,m it seems almost a certainty that she will find him guilty of culpable homicide.
A verdict on the charge of culpable homicide, similar to manslaughter in the United States, still remains. Pistorius also faces two counts of discharging a gun in a public area, as well as illegal possession of ammunition.
If he is found guilty of murder without premeditation, or culpable homicide, he could receive a 15-year sentence as a first time offender. Mitigating factors, such as his emotional state, anxiety levels and disability could result in a lesser sentence.
The Guardian: LIVE updated coverage of the trial of Oscar Pistorius.
Olympic and Paralympic track star Oscar Pistorius was convicted of culpable homicide on Friday, escaping the more serious charge of murder for the killing of his girlfriend, and will now battle to avoid going to prison.
The 27-year-old double amputee, who became one of the biggest names in world athletics, stood impassively in the dock, his hands folded in front of him, as Judge Thokozila Masipa delivered her verdict.
Pistorius was also convicted of firing a pistol under the table of a packed Johannesburg restaurant but cleared of two other firearms charges – illegal possession of ammunition and firing a pistol out of the sun-roof of a car.