Alex Mitchley
2 minute read
11 Apr 2014
3:40 pm

Complaint filed with BCCSA over graphic images of Reeva

Alex Mitchley

The Broadcast Complaints Commission of South Africa (BCCSA) has received a complaint about the graphic image of Reeva Steenkamp's injuries that was shown during the Oscar Pistorius trial.

FILE PICTURE: June, Reeva Steenkamp's mother, is comforted by unidentified relative afte her dead daughter's picture was shown on screen during the trial of paralympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius at the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Wednesday, 9 April 2014. Pistorius sobbed in the witness stand on Tuesday as he described how, gripped by fear, he shot dead his girlfriend through a locked toilet door thinking she was an intruder. Picture: Siphiwe Sibeko/Reuters/Pool

The forensic photograph of the graphic headwound the model sustained the night she was killed by the paralympian was shown in court this week and  broadcast live on television.

“We are in receipt of one complaint which concerns the images of the victim as broadcast on Wednesday.  The matter is currently still pending,” the BCCSA said.

Social media was quick to react in horror to the broadcast of the image:



It is not the only complaint that has been filed in regards to the highly publicised trial, the the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) confirming that it had received a complaint about the way State Prosecutor Gerrie Nel has conducted his cross-examination of murder-accused Oscar Pistorius.

SAHRC spokesperson Isaac Mangena confirmed that an email with the intention to lodge a complaint over statements made by Nel in court has been received.

Sapa reported that the complainant Jan Landman, a former commissioner of the Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious, and Linguistic Communities, requested that the SAHRC investigate and rule whether Nel was permitted to refer to Pistorius as a “liar” as he cross-examined him.

In the complaint Landman said it was his opinion that in calling Pistorius a liar, Nel infringed on his right to a fair trial. Furthermore Landman claimed that Nel contravened Pistorius’s right to presumed innocent and his right to freedom of expression.

During court proceedings at the High Court in Pretoria on Friday, Nel was reprimanded by presiding Judge Thokozile Masipa.

“Watch your language Mr Nel. You don’t call the witness a liar, not while he is in the witness box,” she said.