South African Para-Olympian Kills Girlfriend Blames Crime Rate

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South African Olympian

Police said a 26-year-old man, who they have not named, was in custody and a case of murder was being investigated.

The precise circumstances surrounding the incident are unclear. Reports say he may have mistaken her for a burglar.

Pistorius, 26, is known as the "blade runner", and was the first double amputee to run in the Olympics.

The news that he may have killed his girlfriend will shock the country as Pistorius is regarded as one of South Africa's national icons, reports the BBC's Peter Biles from Capetown.

The incident is said to have taken place between 04:00 and 05:00 local time (02:00-03:00 GMT).

A police statement said that a 30-year-old woman was "fatally wounded" in the early hours of Thursday morning at a home in the Silverlakes complex in the Boschkop area of the capital.

The woman had been wounded in her head and upper body. Paramedics were at the house when police arrived, but she died at the scene. A 9mm pistol was recovered.

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