South African newspaper sheds doubt on Oscar Pistorius' accidental shooting claim

Oscar Pistorius weeps in court in Pretoria, South Africa, Feb 15, 2013, at his bail hearing in the murder case of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.
AP Photo/Antione de Ras - Independent Newspapers Ltd South Africa

Double-amputee Olympian Oscar Pistorius has claimed he shot and killed his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp accidentally because he thought she was an intruder, but a report in a major South African newspaper casts some doubt on that scenario.

Police recovered a "bloodied cricket bat" at the 26-year-old runner's Pretoria home after the shooting, and it has turned into a central piece of evidence in the case, City Press reports.

The paper also claims Steenkamp's skull had been "crushed," and police are investigating whether the bat was the cause of that injury.

There are allegedly three scenarios police are investigating involving the bat, according to City Press: The first is that Pistorius somehow used it against Steenkamp; the second involves the possibility that Steenkamp used it to defend herself after barricading herself inside a bathroom; the final scenario is that Pistorius used it to break down the bathroom door once she had been barricaded inside.

Police have also allegedly requested a drug test from Pistorius, City Press reports.

A police spokeswoman told The Guardian newspaper she could not explain how the "bloody cricket bat" and drug test claims had emerged in South African newspapers, but did not deny them.

"We are not commenting on anything in the newspapers today as the case is still before the court," she said on Sunday. "They are insinuating they got the information from the police."

Meanwhile, Pistorius' agent told the Associated Press that the double-amputee Olympian has received "overwhelming support" from his fans as he remains in custody in a South African police station.

Peet van Zyl said Sunday outside the Brooklyn police station that "international fans from literally all over the world" have sent their good wishes to Pistorius.