TODAY

TODAY   |  February 20, 2013

Pistorius recounts details of girlfriend’s shooting

In the second day of Oscar Pistorius’ bond hearing regarding the death of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, the Olympian described in detail what happened the night of her shooting. NBC’s Michelle Kosinski reports and former prosecutor Star Jones discusses the case.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> let us start with what has been a dramatic morning in court at oscar pistorius ' bail hearing . michelle kosinski just left the courtroom. good morning to you.

>> reporter: hi, savannah. we did not expect to hear this level of detail today. debate over whether or not steroids were found inside pistorius ' home. still unclear. neighbors who claim they heard fighting, gunshots, screaming, more gun shots while prosecutors poke what they believe are big holes in pistorius ' story. oscar pistorius covers his face in public now, arriving for a second day of his bond hearing. today comes stunning detail. the chief police investigator says they have witness statements from a woman who says she heard what sounded like fighting coming from the home for a full hour between 2:00 and 3:00 that morning, then heard gun shots. the defense pointed out she was nearly 2,000 feet away . and another witness who claims he heard gun shots, looked out his window to see lights on at pistorius ' home, then heard a woman scream two or three times, he says, followed by another few gun shots. police also say they found steroids, testosterone with needles for injection in pistorius ' bedroom. the defense quickly countered that was merely an herbal remedy , forcing police to concede it might not have been testosterone. pistorius would have had to have walked down a 23-foot hallway, gone down to the bathroom and shoot from an angle from a distance of five feet away and he would have had his prosthetics legs on because the bullets were high, with a downward trajectory. pistorius has said his legs were off. he woke to get a fan from his balcony, he said, when he heard a noise in the bathroom. i felt a sense of terror rushing over me. felt extremely vulnerable. i knew i had to protect reeva and myself. i grabbed my 9 millimeter pistol from underneath my bed, screamed words to the effect of getting him out of the house. prosecutors say they don't buy it. why would a burglar lock himself in the toilet? there are other questions. why wouldn't he first assume a noise in the bathroom might be his girlfriend? if he's then screaming, yelling for reeva to call police , wouldn't she have answered from that bathroom? when he fired the first shot, wouldn't he have heard something from her? police calling his version of that morning highly unlikely. while pistorius continued to sob, his defense successfully hit police on a number of points. if your partner was screaming that there was an intruder in the house, wouldn't you lock yourself in the bathroom and keep quiet, too? some of what we're hearing would not be admissible at a trial. this is, after all, only a bond hearing and we still don't know if pistorius will be released. savannah?

>> is there still an open question as to whether the substance found inside his home is stroisd or not, or have police basically conceded that they misread the label?

>> reporter: in no uncertain terms they said we found steroids, with tesss to troens with needles for injection. it was only when they're done with their testimony that the defense said wasn't it testo -- an herbal remedy . they said, okay, i just saw the first word assumed it was testosterone. so now it's 100% in question, savannah.

>> one of the reasons we'll wait to see what happens inside the courtroom when there's a trial. we bring in star jones , who is a legal contributor. as you know, this is a case that will turn on the facts. we've heard a lot of facts inside this courtroom today. do you think there's been significant damage done to oscar pistorius ' story?

>> circumstantial, yes, indeed. when you put together a homicide case you try to match the story or the statement of the defendant with the forensic evidence . there's a tremendous amount of forensic evidence . they'll put together a scenario of what likely happened in the house that morning. if the story does not match up, oscar pistorius is in trouble.

>> you hear about some of these facts, a detective that says the trajectory of the bullets was downward and pistorius claims he was on his stump, he wasn't wearing his prosthetic legs. there's testimony that reeva steenkamp was trdressed in the bathroom that would undermine his story that she was in bed before this.

>> first look to your right and ask your sleeping partner , did you hear that also? they'll be matching logical common sense . we're not dealing with a jury this time. we will deal with a judge.

>> that was my last question. oscar pistorius is somebody who, prior to valentine's day, had an enormous amount of goodwill, beloved figure in south africa , sympathetic figure in court. apparently he has been sobbing uncontrollably. because this is never going to be a jury trial in south africa , does any of that matter?

>> you remove the histrionics that happen in a traditional courtroom in the united states . they can't play to a jury or emotion. it will come down to a logical determination of what's reasonable and whether or not this was premeditated murder.

>> this is a bail hearing . unusual. in our country, a bail hearing generally speaking wouldn't be this lengthy. you would not see this amount of evidence.

>> no, you would not. however, if i were the prosecutor looking to keep someone in -- excuse me, to deny bail, i would present my strongest case. but it's being undermined by some of the facts. the cops are not ready yet. they don't have all the information.

>> always good to get your perspective. thank you. now here's