The family of Oscar Pistorius, who is charged with murdering his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, has distanced itself from his father’s comments that guns are needed because of high crime levels.
Henke Pistorius told the Daily Mirror newspaper that his son needed guns because of the government’s failure to protect white people.
Reeva Steenkamp died after he fired multiple shots into the toilet of his top floor apartment in a gated housing complex in Pretoria.
Records in South Africa showed the Pistorius family owned 56 guns, the Daily Mirror reports.
“Some of the guns are for hunting and some are for protection, the hand guns. It speaks to the ANC government, look at white crime levels [sic], why protection is so poor in this country, it’s an aspect of our society,” it quotes Henke Pistorius as saying.
Henke Pistorius told the Daily Mirror newspaper that his son needed guns because of the government’s failure to protect white people
The family was “deeply concerned” about his comments, the family’s publicist said in a statement, AFP news agency reports.
Family spokesman Arnold Pistorius said “the Pistorius family own weapons purely for sport and hunting purposes”, it reports.
“The comments doesn’t [sic] represent the views of Oscar or the rest of the Pistorius family,” he is quoted as saying.
Critics say the government has not done enough to tackle a surge in violent crime since white minority rule ended in South Africa in 1994.
However, the South African government says crime levels have fallen in recent years.
For the first time in living memory, New York City has spent a day entirely without violent crime.
NYPD’s chief spokesman said that Monday was the most bloodshed-free 24-hour period in recent history.
Not a single murder, shooting, stabbing or other incident of violent crime was reported for a whole day.
Despite a July spike in homicides, the city’s murder rate is on target to hit its lowest point since 1960.
Just a few months ago, residents were living through what one tabloid newspaper called the “summer of blood”.
Despite the fall in homicides, statistics point to a 3% overall rise in crime.
For the first time in living memory, New York City has spent a day entirely without violent crime
There has also been a 9% increase in larceny, which police blame on a surge in smartphone thefts.
But killings are now down 23% compared with last year, which represents a 50-year low.
There have been 366 murders so far this year in New York City, compared with 472 at this time last year.
Experts say such a low number of homicides is highly unusual for a US city of eight million people.
Gang-plagued Chicago, Illinois, has chalked up 462 murders this year, despite having a population of about 2.7 million people.
There have been 301 murders in 2012 in the city of Philadelphia, which has 1.5 million people.
Some experts are praising the New York police department’s aggressive crime-prevention tactics, notably the so-called Stop And Frisk policy, which has rooted out dozens of illegal guns.
But critics argue that it has led to hundreds of thousands of young blacks and Latinos being stopped without cause.