Very interesting observations. The defense goes first - lays out a detailed version of the facts, prosecutor then says "wait for the evidence'. The reverse of our procedure. - GWC
Oscar Pistorius Trial - TalkLeft: The Politics Of Crime:
by Jeralyn'via Blog this'
I've been watching the Oscar Pistorius trial live on the internet since it began Monday. They are still on the first witness.
The format of the trial is different than in the U.S. In South Africa, the defendant has the right to make a statement addressing the charges at the beginning, before the state gives an opening argument. Oscar's lawyer read a detailed statement, in the first person as if Oscar was speaking, refuting the charges paragraph by paragraph. He went through the facts of what happened, and it was much like what theaffidavit from the bail hearing. (The only difference I could discern was that he said Oscar went to the balcony to bring two fans back. In the bail application, they said there was one fan.)
The prosecutor then read into the record a list of agreed to exhibits (photos from the autopsy, photos from the crime scene, a report showing Oscar had no drugs or steroids in his system, etc.)
Then he said he was calling his first witness, and the Judge, sounding a bit surprised, asked him whether he wanted to make an opening statement. He responded something like, "If you want me to, I will." He proceeded to then give a very short and very weak statement. He said there were no eyewitnesses to the crime and his case was based on circumstantial evidence and inferences. He said from the inferences and circumstances, Oscar's version couldn't be true. That was it. Then he called the first witness.