Samantha Taylor, an ex-girlfriend of South African Paralympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius, dubbed “the Blade Runner,” has reportedly given police information about the athlete’s history with guns that could result in additional charges.
Pistorius, 26, who is scheduled to return to court on Monday, faces a charge of premeditated murder in the death of his late girlfriend, 29-year-old FHM cover model Reeva Steenkmap. Steenkamp was discovered by police lying in a puddle of her own blood after having been shot four times in Pistorius’ home on Valentine’s Day. Katlego Mogale, a police spokeswoman, said law enforcement officials discovered a 9mm pistol at the crime scene, the Chicago Tribune reported.
According to South Africa’s City Press, Taylor, a marketing student who dated Pistorius last October when she was 18, before he began his relationship with Steenkamp, told police about at least one incident during their relationship in which Pistorius was allegedly reckless with his guns.
Taylor told police that she was driving in a car with him on a highway when he recklessly discharged a gun. “Oscar allegedly stood up and fired shots through the sunroof,” a source told the newspaper.
Taylor’s formal comments to police echo harsh remarks she made about Pistorius after their breakup. Shortly after news of Steenkamp and Pistorius’ relationship became public, Taylor told the City Press, "Oscar has such a way with women. She's probably not the only one he's got."
"Oscar is certainly not what people think he is,” Taylor added. She also told the press that she would reveal “what he made me go through,” but later followed up that comment with a letter from her attorney, saying that she would not comment any further.
Then, one day after Steenkamp’s death, Taylor’s mother, Trish Taylor, wrote a public post on Facebook in which she accused Pistorius of being reckless with his guns and saying she was grateful that her own daughter was out of his “clutches.”
"I am so glad that Sammy is safe and sound and out of the clutches of that man,” Taylor wrote in a Facebook post, according to the Herald Sun. “There were a few occasions where things could have gone wrong with her and his gun during the time they dated. My condolences to the family whose daughter has passed away. My heart breaks for you.”
According to City Press, the new information Taylor gave the police could prompt the state to add two additional counts of reckless and negligent discharge of a firearm to their case against him. Pistorius, who is to appear in court Monday, is already being charged with murder and unlawful possession of ammunition.
Pistorius, who has denied the premeditated murder charge, admitted that she shot Steenkamp four times through a closed door in his Pretoria home, but said that he mistook her for a burglar. He added that he had no intention of killing her. Pistorius claimed that he awoke in the middle of the night to bring a fan inside from the balcony, but heard noises when he returned to his pitch-dark bedroom.
Pistorius received bail in February, but was required to surrender his firearms, passports and not attempt to get a new passport. He was also required to report to a police station every day.
In a statement published on his personal website in June, Pistorius’ team wrote, "Oscar is not contemplating a formal return to athletics and his training is not aimed at preparing for competition.”
"His focus at this time remains entirely on the court case,” the statement continued. “His family, and those close to him, have encouraged him to spend a few hours a week on the track to assist him in finding the necessary mental and emotional equilibrium to process his trauma and prepare for the trial."