Pretoria, SOUTH AFRICA: Double-amputee sprinter Oscar Pistorius is no stranger to controversy. Born with fibular hemimelia (congenital absence of the fibula) in both legs, Pistorius had both of his legs amputated below his knees when he was 11 months old. Instead of succumbing to his handicap, Pistorius, played rugby, tennis, and water polo.
When he, ironically, was sidelined in rugby due to a knee injury, Pistorius took up running, and has been running ever since. Nicknamed “Blade Runner”, Oscar Pistorius was outfitted with J-shaped carbon-fiber prosthetics called the “Flex-Foot Cheetah” and went on to win multiple gold medal in the Paralympic Games. In 2012, Pistorius became the first amputee runner to compete in the Olympic Games after fighting for eligibility and showing that his prosthetic limbs did not give him an advantage over able-bodied runners.
Now Oscar Pistorius is under investigation for the murder of his girlfriend, model Reeva Steenkamp, who was found dead in Pistorius’ Pretoria home. Conflicting reports show the murder weapon to be a 9mm pistol or a cricket bat. While authorities believe the case to be rock-solid against Pistorius, some defense attorneys have begun to speculate how Pistorius may be innocent.
“If used, the ‘cripple defense’ could very well save Oscar Pistorius from any jail-time,” stated defense attorney Robert Stainter Esq. “It’s akin to to the bloody glove defense from the OJ Simpson trial in the 90s, just more skeptical.”
In the ‘cripple defense’, a suspect in a crime is shown that he or she could no possibly have instigated a crime due to being crippled, and unable to carry out the activities of an able-bodied person.
“For Pistorius, the bloodied cricket bat in question would be key in the ‘cripple defense.’ How could a man without full legs get a high enough extension to hit a woman in the head hard enough with a cricket bat? It just doesn’t make sense,” stated Stainter.
The crippled defense has only been used one other time, when Harrison Ford starred in The Fugitive and blamed the murder of his wife on a one-armed man, a ludicrous assumption to all characters in the film and even the audience who knew the truth yet still giggled every time the “one-armed man” was mentioned. The irony became so popular that drinking games were invented based on the movie.
Unfortunately, the ‘cripple defense’ may have been crippled by Pistorius himself. “We’re talking about a para-athlete that fought the odds to be respected as a runner as a whole by competing in able-bodied events,” stated attorney Mary Heinsberg Esq. “It would be assumed that Pistorius would try to kill someone like any able-bodied murderer.”
Oscar Pistorius is currently in custody. Unconfirmed reports speculate that he led South African police and a slow chase through the streets of Pretoria wearing white prosthetic legs inscribed with the word “Bronco.”