Why did “Oscar Pistorius: Blade Runner Killer” jumble its timeline? Why is it such a god-awful mess?

No doubt about it, “Blade Runner Killer” is a confusing flick. It jumps around unnecessarily…or is there a reason it’s such a muddle? By Nick van der Leek

I’ve spent a few days meticulously analyzing the first film about the Pistorius case, premised on Reeva’s perspective. I’ve taken an interest because the 14 books Lisa and I co-researched and co-wrote between June 2014 and December 2017 follow exactly the same theme – Reeva.  What was her perspective on her murder? What was this crime like for her?  What did it look like from the inside, what did Oscar look like inside his home, and inside the cubicle?

Going through the 83 minute film, it soon became clear the timeline was not only muddled, but incorrect. Starting with the second slide, Reeva is presented in the kitchen, cooking dinner at 17:30. In fact she only arrived home that evening at 18:00, and Pistorius ten minutes later at 18:10.

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To appreciate just how jumbled the plot is, have a look at the following screen-grabs – all of which are taken on the dozen or so occasions when the film time-stamps itself with a caption.

I’ve included the above slide in the timeline again for reasons of completeness.

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In this particular slide, the caption is undated and at the top for the first time. The incident here seems to depict three separate events. Reeva is dressed in black, the same way as she appeared at the Virgin Active Sports Awards on January 7th, 2013. However, Oscar’s jealousy and tantrum seems to be a conflation from at least ten days prior, at Darren Fresco’s engagement party. It was after this party that Reeva wrote her “unhappy and sad” message at 14:17 on Saturday, January 26th, 2013, complaining about being in a “double standard relationship”.  The film also conflates the exit from the awards with the incident where Oscar drove so fast it frightened Reeva, and June ended up chastising him over the phone, while he was driving.

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If it’s still not clear, around half the slides are out of order, inaccurate or both. “Trial Day 1” doesn’t make any sense, because the previous slide, “March 3, 2014,” was the first day of trial, so why say it twice?

Below is a list showing in bold and red what’s out of order, inaccurate or both.

  1. February 13th, 2013, 06:04
  2. February 13th, 2013, 17:30
  3. February 14th, 06:43
  4. February 13th, 2013, 14:16 
  5. 5 months before Reeva’s death [inaccurate]
  6. New Year’s Eve – 6 weeks before Reeva’s death
  7. 1 Week before Reeva’s death
  8. Oscar’s trial, March 14th, 2014
  9. South African Sports Awards Party [undated, caption appears at the top for the first time][Actual Date Virgin Active Sport Industry Awards 2013 held at Emperors Palace on Feb. 7, 2013]
  10. 1 month before Reeva’s death.
  11. February 14th, 2013, 11:26
  12. Oscar’s Trial, March 3, 2014
  13. Trial Day 1 [March 3, 2014 – date not provided, but same as 12] 
  14. Appeal Trial narrative provided [not including November/December 2017]

About half of the narrative, set out in this way, is taken out of the normal chronology.

When one colour-codes the narrative, it becomes even more obvious how out of order the narrative, but also how unnecessarily, out of order it is.

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Yet when rearranged [see above] the plot fits together perfectly. So if you’re going to go to the trouble to set out a timeline, why not have a proper seamless, chronological narrative in the first place? Isn’t that why you have a timeline – to structure and properly explicate your story, especially when it’s a legal drama?

Overall, it seems as though the filmmaker’s went to a lot of effort to get the details right.  Plenty of effort went into the special effects to show South African born Andreas Damm, who plays Oscar, walking on his stumps.

The film narrative also refers to and dramatizes the actual content of WhatsApps.  They even got Reeva’s outfits at the awards ceremonies right, down to her hairstyle, his and her tattoos and even the tippex-like splodges on the back of Oscar’s head.

In the film, a message on Oscar’s phone from “Baby Shoes”, and Reeva intercepting it and confronting him about it, appears to be what triggers the conflagration, leading to Reeva’s murder.

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Accents aside, I thought both actors nailed the emotional dynamic of the relationship for the first time.

So here’s a question. Why would you go to so much effort to get the details right, and then intentionally fuzz up your own film, fudging the chapter details, jumbling the flashbacks within the flashbacks, confusing and irritating your audience?

Why would you go to the trouble to set up a timeline, and then Rubik’s-cube it, effectively shooting yourself and your film in the foot?



Modelling Reeva’s Fall Behind the Door

Here’s the proof! Reeva Steenkamp fell to her left as she was shot, and what it means changes everything…by Nick van der Leek

When an eye doctor asks you to look at a chart, it’s first with one eye covered, then the other eye covered.  This is to make sure your vision is 20/20 in both eyes. The danger in seeing with both eyes at the same time, is that one might fill in details that aren’t actually there, but you think they are.

That’s what happened in this case. The analogy for looking at the chart of letters with both eyes is the crime scene, with Reeva’s blood explicitly dripping all over the toilet.


The message, in scarlet letters is simple and obvious: Reeva died while sitting on the toilet/Reeva was found dead lying slumped over the toilet.

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Reeva Steenkamp [Toni Garrn] after being shot inside the cubicle, as presented in the 2017 film Blade Runner Killer.

In the analysis below, I cover one “eye” of the narrative, and then the other “eye”, before revealing an extraordinary new truth, and one that changes everything.


Channel 7 did the first fully-fledged reconstruction of the entire crime scene when their exclusive documentary premiered on Australian television on Sunday July 6th, 2014. I remember that day because it was the coldest night of the year in South Africa, and I was recording a radio interview on my research into the Pistorius case that Sunday evening with OFM’s Johrne van Huysteen.

But Channel 7’s was hardly the only reconstruction. The first reconstruction wasn’t done by Channel 7, who got it from The Evidence Room [hired by Team Pistorius in October 2013].

The first reconstruction was done by the police.


Note the toilet  door has been pieced together with the blood evidence still in place. The window blinds are down and the slats closed in this in situ reconstruction. The toilet cubicle light didn’t work. The lazer scanner is positioned approximately hip height, right beside the entrance wall to the bathroom. From this perspective, with the door open, the angle of the bullet through the door is difficult to appreciate.

In hindsight, we may not think much of it, but if the cops didn’t salvage the door, the planks, the detritus and fragments, if they didn’t confiscate the door and reassemble it, we might never have found out what really happened to Reeva behind the door.

If the cops accepted Oscar’s tears and his bullshit story, if they didn’t suspect Oscar to begin with, [and let’s face it, he was a beloved South African celebrity at the time] the precise mathematics recorded when 4 bullets zipped through those fibres may have been lost forever.

Arguably, the official Dolus Eventualis verdict handed down by the Supreme Court of Appeal in December 2015 confirms that we’re still in the dark not only about what happened and why, but we’re still no closer to knowing how Reeva was shot.


Through various narratives and lines of inquiry I’ve followed, I’ve endeavoured to change that, and I’m satisfied I’ve made progress in terms of providing insight into the why and the what of this case.

For some time, however, I’ve maintained that the Holy Grail in this case was to animate the scene using the precise mathematics – the geometry of angles and trajectories – and matching these to the autopsy evidence, and allowing the science of gravity and falling bodies to colour in the rest.


An authentic, high quality render would reveal the pace of the shots, and precisely how Reeva reacted to them and where she came to rest in the cubicle.

Intuitively I’ve always felt Reeva did not land with her head on the toilet, as per Oscar’s and Mangena’s versions.


“Intuitively” may sound wishy washy, but it’s that same instinctive “gut-feel” that drove the cops to remove the door from its hinges, collect the planks and splinters, and test the evidence against Oscar’s version of events.  They could just as easily have taken Oscar’s word for it, just as Masipa did. So don’t be too quick to dismiss intuition.

Despite my intuitions, and despite sketching the scene, researching the trajectories, and making a few forays into hiring animators, I never finalised my research into this area.  I thought I would deal with it, finally, once Oscar’s sentence was finalised prompting the final narrative [Justice Eventualis]. And I guess that’s ultimately what’s happened.  I have tested these intuitions to completion within the context of the Justice Eventualis story. But I was offered, serendipitously, a new angle on these issues via a completely different trial playing out while the Pistorius case was coming to its end.


It was while sitting in on the Van Breda case in November 2017 that a fresh idea took root. I was watching the 23-year-old triple murder accused modelling his testimony in court, on a man the prosecutor claimed was about the same height as Henri’s phantom.

That’s when the thought occurred to me: why not do the same thing in the Pistorius case?  Why stop at the door and the trajectories when the most important part of the scene – Reeva – isn’t there. Everything about the Pistorius case is about trying to re-envision Reeva, so why not do so in the most critical part of the crime scene – the cubicle?  Why not have a real person, a model of similar height, stand in behind the door for the murdered model? Why not use the cosmos of angles and lines and see how they lined up not only with the impressions on the opposite wall of the cubicle, but the wounds as per the autopsy?

One may say that Mangena already did that. Yes he did, through description. I want to do that through a practical demonstration, much as Galloway did with Henri and her model. The difference is, Galloway wished to discredit Henri’s phantom, whereas I wish to turn Pistorius’ nameless and shapeless burglar back into 29-year-old Reeva Steenkamp. She was, after all, behind the door, and she died, not some burglar.

Besides lining up the trajectories with Reeva’s injuries as they appear in the autopsy photos, I want to probe an area that’s missing from Pistorius’ story, from the state’s case and from the SCA’s judgment. How did Reeva fall, behind the door? What was the kinetics of it? What did the motion look and feel like – to her?

Does it matter? My intuition tells me that Reeva needed to move in order for her wounds to be inflicted where they were. And so, what does that mean?  I’m not sure, but I suspect it means something. Will this exercise dislodge any new insights, will any new secrets stubbornly hidden in the murk be revealed? All I can do is try and see…


Again, taking impetus out of the Van Breda case, I decided to set up the crime scene in my garage. I’d already compiled a scaled blueprint of the crime scene in order to figure out exactly where Oscar was standing. Using measurements provided by police ballistics expert Chris Mangena, and using the Mollett’s research as a reference, I bought a standard door, I traced the dimensions of the cubicle 1.4 metres x 1.3 metres] on the garage floor, and I measured out bullets A, B, C and D on the door.


Wooden door with scaled printout of bullet holes attached.

In order to be as accurate as possible:

  1. I made a colour print out of the most verisimilar photograph of the door, and scaled it up to real size. When I placed this photo over the door, I placed a small piece of wood the size of a pencil through the cubicle size of the door and noted where it punctured on the bathroom side of the door. The holes already drilled into the wood as per crime scene measurements perfectly matched the holes in the image.1-IMG_6282
  2. The angle of the holes through the 4 centimetre wide door had to be accurate as well. These angles were verified using data from the laser scanner used by the state, Oscar height on his stumps while holding a gun and his arms outstretched, and linking the holes in the door to the appropriate muzzle height at a distance of approximately 220 centimetres.
  3. Throughout the setup crime scene images were referenced in order to follow the “spirit” of the crime scene. Beside the downward and obtuse angle of the trajectory, the door is also located at the precise dimensions as it did in the toilet cubicle.

In terms of the 4 bullet holes I used the following data sets.

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Precise measurements of ballistics through the toilet door. Image courtesy Calvin and Thomas Mollett, Oscar vs The Truth.

A is the lowest of the 4 shots, at 93.5 centimetres from the ground, and 34 cm to the right of the left edge of the door. A hit Reeva in her right hip. A is the only bullet of the 3 that struck Reeva to be completely absorbed by Reeva’s body.

B is the highest of the 4 shots, at 104.3cm from the ground, and 13 cm to the right of A, or 47 centimetres from the left edge of the door. B was the only bullet of the 4 to miss Reeva completely and smash into the tiled wall and ricochet into the opposite wall. The damage to the wall inflicted by bullet B is used as a background image for the cover of Justice Eventualis.

C is lower than B, at 99.4 centimetres from the ground, but slightly higher than A. C is spaced equidistant from B as B is from A [.i.e. 13 centimetres]. C struck Reeva on the front of her right forearm, slightly above the elbow area.

A fragment of C sliced clean through the right side of Reeva’s black shirt yet missed her torso underneath. 3 fragments – presumably from C – were all found in the area of the magazine rack, where the talons separated as they tore through Reeva’s arm.

Given the volcanic opening on the back side of Reeva’s right arm, one would expect an eruption of flesh, a spray of tissue and meat, to paint the rear wall of the cubicle behind her arm. Yet there is no blood spatter directly behind her indicative of this.


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Notice the absence of any blood spatter from the bullet wounds to the arm on the wall above the magazine rack [brown rectangle]. There are only three possibilities to account for this: either the splatter was wiped away, or the arm was in front of the body causing the blood spatter to land on the vest [but still allow the bullet fragment to pass through without penetrating the torso – unlikely, or a combination of both.

D appears to be a minor variation of C, since it is just 5 centimetres to the right [B is to the right of A, C to the right of B and D to the right of C]. D is 97.3 centimetres from the ground, and 16 centimentres from the right edge of the door frame.  Of the 3 bullets, D is the closest bullet in height to A, but still slightly higher. D sliced through Reeva’s left hand, near the index finger, and then penetrated and exited her skull.  A fragment of bullet D remained in Reeva’s skull while another smashed through the other side. No spray of brain fragments – of the volume one would expect – is evident on the ball behind D either.

In effect, after wounding Reeva at A, the lowest shot of the 4, all subsequent shots were higher, starting with B which was too high, and then “modifying” to the more accurate C, and D, which were also both higher than A and both lower than B.  C and D effectively were “averages” of A and B, which implies “modification” or aiming.


Reeva was short for a model at just 1.71 metres. Her gutsy determination got her into the door with Ice Models, a trait we tend to forget in the text of this crime, and the crime scene itself. Reeva not only had plucky resolve, she was physically fit and not afraid of opposition.

After my first-choice – a slim matriculant – cancelled at short notice, citing the death of her grandfather [no joke], I asked my sister to stand-in. She’s 1.74 metres, so 3 centimetres taller than Reeva, but close enough.

I had my sister look at the autopsy images herself and then draw bullet holes on her right thigh, right arm and left hand. I also showed her the idiosyncrasies of the right side of the magazine rack “tower” [facing away from the toilet], and matched it to a bruise with a tail in the autopsy images, evident on Reeva’s right buttock.

Note the idiosyncrasies of the original magazine rack were not precisely duplicated in the model provided in court, in the reconstructed cubicle. This proved to be a costly oversight.

I showed her how the nicks on Reeva’s spine were also inflicted by the flaring of the right side of the magazine rack tower as Reeva fell against the magazine rack.

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Image courtesy Calvin and Thomas Mollett, Oscar vs The Truth.

Reeva’s fall against the magazine rack was the “sound of wood moving” Oscar spoke so often about in court, the sound he claimed was “someone coming out to attack me.”

Since she’s an architecture graduate, my sister is pretty good with angles, measurements and three dimensions. But the head wound is tricky, so I applied a toothpick, which I attached with sellotape over her hair at the appropriate angle and on the top, right side of her head.

To make the hip wound explicit, I gave my sister a piece of double sided tape, with one side of the adhesive exposed while leaving the bright blue surface as a marker. She then attached the marker to the outside of the grey Nike shorts I gave her. She also wore a sleeveless black top, though more figure hugging than the one Reeva wore on the night she died. And like Reeva, she was barefoot.


Once in the demarcated cubicle behind the door, I placed two white buckets inside to represented the toilet. This quickly limited the already limited space, and without telling my sister, she sought to avoid standing or sitting on the upturned buckets. Reeva likely did the same in terms of the toilet.

I handed my sister my phone. When I inserted a rod through Bullet A, it lined up perfectly with the hip wound. I took a photo at this point, showing that Reeva stood no more than a foot from the toilet door.

This was also more than enough space for her to be close to the door while holding up her phone in her right hand.

Bullet B, the only bullet that missed, was a lot more difficult to illustrate than Bullet A.  Although it lined up with the opposite wall, the difficultly lay in freezing Reeva’s movement at the time B flew through the door and smashed into the wall behind her. This difficulty was because Reeva was off-balance when the bullet flew harmlessly over her right shoulder. If Reeva remained in the same position she was in when A hit her, B would have sliced through the mid right section of her abdomen.

In order to have my sister in the right position, I gave her a large, purple Pilates ball to sit on. She needed to move slightly to her right, and back, and sit down on the ball in order to avoid the rod completely.

To reiterate: If she remained in the same position as she was when A struck her, B would have struck her in the middle to right of her abdomen. It may seem a small point, but Reeva was not static after being hit by the first bullet. Besides her movement, bullet B also gives us some indication of a pause between bangs A and B. The rod for B was inserted to its full length until it “hit” the wall behind her, immediately ricocheting against the adjacent wall.

For Bullet C, I inserted a small black table from my own bathroom, situated opposite my toilet, in the reconstructed toilet. It’s approximately the same height, but obviously it doesn’t hold magazines, and unlike the original magazine rack, this small table allows one to sit on it. In order for C to line up with my sister’s arm, she needed to be in an almost-sitting position on the magazine rack.

Let me explain what I mean by “almost-sitting”. Firstly, she is low enough on the magazine rack to be “sitting” on it, thus dislodging it, but only half of her is actually sitting on it [based on the bruise-impression].

This also suggests that Reeva’s back and head are almost in line with the rear wall of the cubicle as well. This stands to reason – in order for her to be sitting anywhere on the magazine rack, she needed to have fallen all the way back to the rear wall of the cubicle.

This suggests that prior to firing the third bullet, Reeva had already stumbled against the magazine rack, perhaps kicking it with the heel of her left foot as she fell backward, or falling onto it and prompting the wood to screetch and/or judder against the floor, thus alerting Oscar – in the pause after B – to her position.

In addition, Reeva likely screamed in agony after bullet A, and ironically, the scream that saved her [or alerted others to her plight] might have also doomed her, as the shooter was able to track her movement behind the door to the right from just 2 metres away.

Oscar knew his own home just as we know ours. So any sound from the magazine rack would have told him, a practised sharp shooter, exactly where Reeva was.

A final point to note about Bullet C – in order for the bullet to pierce her arm and pierce her shirt yet miss her torso, Reeva had to have turned slightly to her left. In other words, away from the toilet. While my sister’s shirt was skin-tight, Reeva’s was more baggy, and Reeva’s torso also had the classic hourglass shape which allowed a fragment to penetrate the shirt and yet miss her midriff.

Reeva’s motion behind the door now emerges as a rapid downward and [in terms of Reeva behind the door] right to left motion. This motion is in keeping with the width between Bullet A and B, and also Reeva’s ability to “dodge” B.

You will recall the distance at the door from A to B is 13 centimetres, ditto from B to C, making a total of 26 centimentres or ¼ of a metre. Remember the width of the cubicle from toilet wall to the opposite wall is 1.4 metres. [We’ll ignore for the moment that because of the toilet inside, that distance – the distance Reeva had to move from right to her left is actually less than 1 metre].

So the fan-shape of four bullets penetrating the door is 1/5th the width of the cubicle, or ¼ the width Reeva had to move in [taking the toilet space out of the equation].  However on the other side of the door the distance between bullets A and D is greater, closer to half a metre.


This is the view of the bullet trajectories from Reeva’s perspective – i.e. from behind the door. Notice the “fan” shape, indicating a very wide area of impact.

This means – effectively – that after Reeva was hit with the first bullet, she had to move from the point a foot away from the door where she sustained A in the hip, 1 metre backwards and half a metre to her left in order to be wounded on the right side of her head: Bullet D.

Reeva was struck by Bullet D as she was still falling. The impressions on Reeva’s spine are at a slightly off vertical angle, meaning the upper nick is almost in line with Reeva’s vertebra, while the lower nick is to Reeva’s right. If Reeva was falling down against the magazine rack, the lower nick would have inflicted first, followed by the higher. The crucial aspect here is that the higher wound is also slightly to the right, meaning as Reeva approached the ground, she was still moving towards her left [away from the toilet]. Let’s look at that image again, but more carefully and more closely this time.

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Image courtesy Calvin and Thomas Mollett, Oscar vs The Truth.

We can also see the height of the two wounds to her spine correspond to the height of the sharp flaring off the magazine rack, and the type of notches in the skin correspond to the beaked protrusion of the wood flaring.


The Mollett’s were right that these injuries were made from wood, and not as the defense claimed, from bullet fragments bouncing off the wall. However, they weren’t made by the cricket bat but by the magazine rack.

In my experiment, even though my sister is 3 centimentres taller than Reeva, she was still some distance off the ground when Bullet D struck the skull. I had to place a rolled up yoga mat under her in order to achieve the right height. Again, Bullet D and Bullet C were undoubtedly fired AS REEVA STRUCK THE MAGAZINE RACK.

Further, there had to have been a pause after Bullet A in order to allow Reeva to fall backwards, approximately one metre, and for Bullet B [which was well to the right of Bullet A] to miss her.

Since Bullet C was the same distance to the right as Bullet B, the only reason it struck Reeva was because it [and D] was fired quicker after Reeva passed the “starting line” of B’s trajectory, compared to A.  How much quicker?

Gravitational acceleration is 9.80665 m/s.

Reeva’s height is 1.71 metres, and she was shot in the hip at a height of approximately 1 metre. Bullets C and D were fired at a height of roughly 1 metre as well, but with a 5 degree downward trajectory. So how long did it take for Reeva to fall from 1.71 metres in order for her head to align with a bullet below 1 metre?  How long did it take her to fall 800 mm [0.8 metres]?

If she was free-falling, Reeva would have achieved a speed of 3.96 metres per second, and taken 0.4 seconds to fall from a standing position until her buttocks hit the ground.  But she wasn’t freefalling. She fell backwards one metre, and sideways about half a metre, as well as down 0.8 metres.

Falling backwards to the right height would require a [not vertical] distance of 1.2 metres, and taken close to half a second. But if she fell straight down she’d still be out of the trajectory range for Bullet D. To get to D, she also has to fall half a metre to the right.

This suggests that there is something impeding the free fall, besides her left leg which still provides limited heft and mobility.   Obviously, the magazine rack also impeded Reeva’s fall, which is why the bruise appears on her right buttock, and the nicks against her spine.

This bruise was also noted in the autopsy summary sketch, it just wasn’t sketched very well.

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Notice the autopsy image sketch records the bulb of the bruise to the right buttock, but leaves out the tail to the right, left by the magazine rack.Image courtesy Calvin and Thomas Mollett, Oscar vs The Truth.

Since I’m not a genius in geometry, and since the algorithm has now becomes complex, what we can say is that Reeva’s fall from A to D is interrupted by landing on the magazine rack, which delays her fall but allows the shooter to track her [Bullet C].

Since there are effectively “two falls”, from the door onto the magazine rack, and from the magazine rack off it, we may assume 2 x 0.5 second drops. We’re still left with “only” a second. Except we’ve left out another equation: reaction time.

Reaction time is easy to leave out of the equation, simply because we know all the other metrics except the most important one: Reeva. What was this experience like for her? What would it be like for you? If a bullet struck you, out of the blue, would you immediately know what to do, or instantly move? It may stand to reason, but even the world’s most reactionary people – 100 metre track sprinters – even when primed to respond to a shot, take time to react.

The best Olympians in the world have a reaction time of 0.15 seconds. Since Reeva, I believe, was alarmed and thus “primed” for an emergency, we can assume the first shot triggered an immediate movement. Not just falling back, but to her left, away from Bullet A and B. This is why C and D needed to modify to track her, to the right.

The total time between Bullet A and D is estimated at around 1.5 to 2 seconds. That is an eternity when it comes to firing 4 bullets. It averages out to around two bullets per second, or 1 bullet every half second. But the four bullets weren’t fired in one burst, there was a pause at B, resulting in a miss. In that pause, I believe, lies Dolus Directus; the intent to shoot again after a moment’s reflection and recalibration.  Had the prosecution done the math, and had the judge had an appreciation for mathematics, the entire trial could have been reduced to a time-stamped algorithm.

This could also have been demonstrated via a real-time to-scale geometrically-verisimilar animation.


None of the insights or reconstructions could have been achieved without the autopsy evidence, and obviously, that narrative is excised out of the trial testimony and for that matter, the media coverage.  It is this gaping hole, where one can join the dots through the door to Reeva’s wounds and to the ricochet off the rear wall, that allows one to really understand what it was like for Reeva behind the door.  No wonder Oscar smashed down the door the first chance he had. The door represents a vital link that allows us to reconstitute this crime in a way that few other high-profile crimes do.

In the Channel 7 reconstruction, ditto the Mollett’s, I noticed a plank was easily smashed out almost immediately. With one plank out it’s easy to unlock the door. So why did Oscar go on smashing until the entire door was smithereens?


Well, because there were four bullet holes to get rid of. The holes could not only show where Reeva was standing, and moving as she was shot, but also where Oscar was standing.

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Oscar claimed the key was on the floor, this is why he had to smash the rest of the door down – so he could get to it.  But if you’ve dislodged a plank, what’s easier – to smash down a door or to reach in with the plank and move the key closer.

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Also, shouldn’t the key have fallen onto Reeva, if it fell, and if it did, if it was on the floor, wouldn’t it be covered in blood [it wasn’t].


The main takeout from this experiment wasn’t to try to assess the period between A and D, although that remains a vital piece of data missing from this case.  No, the reconstruction was intended to test the intuition that if Reeva was moving to her left, away from the toilet, and landed on the wrong side of the magazine rack, on the ground, while falling to her left, how could she have changed direction and ended up with her arm and head over the toilet bowl?

Additionally, if she had landed with the centre of her body in line with the far side of the magazine rack, could she still have slumped over onto the toilet? The answer is unquestionably no.

Irrespective of which direction Reeva was falling in, any situation where she was sitting on the floor would have made “slumping” over the toilet impossible. You can try it at home. Sit next to your toilet, and try to press your right ear to the toilet seat, and then when you relax, come to rest in this position. The position only be achieved, temporarily, if one is around 15-20 centimentres from the toilet, with nothing in-between.  But the magazine rack was there!

According to the state Reeva lay over the magazine rack with her head on the toilet seat. Everyone seemed to make the same mistake, assuming the blood evidence on the seat was the finishing line, and thus, trying to get Reeva to that finishing line.

My experiment demonstrates that Reeva fell the other way, so that her head and torso faced towards the wall opposite the toilet [the wall towards which she fell from the commencement of Bullet A].

If Reeva fell to the left, where’s the blood? Why are there planks in this area? And why are there no large splodges of blood behind Reeva, against the wall, where the black talon made scarlet sprays of Reeva’s tissue, both from her head and her arm?

The answer is that some artefacts of this blood evidence do remain on the walls, on this side.

So – how did Reeva’s blood end up on and in the toilet bowl?

The only logical explanation, as I see it, is that when faced with the holocaust inside the cubicle, the accused immediately went to word minimising it.  He had to make it look less bad than it did, and that meant getting rid of red paint on the walls, and on the floor. If he was going to claim Reeva went to the toilet, then she also needed to lay over the toilet, not on the wrong side of it.

How would it look if Reeva’s shot dead, and found like this? It would imply [correctly], that she wasn’t using the toilet, and if she wasn’t using it, how could it be an accident?


The state wrongly assumed that there was an innocent explanation for the light blood spatter on the magazine rack. This blood dripped from Reeva’s hair as she was hoisted over the bowl, and her blood from the wound on the right side of her head, and arm, allowed to drain directly into the bowl. There was also a flush to get rid of it, and perhaps to get rid of some pieces of wood too.

This is why there is barely one Coke can’s worth of blood in the cubicle and just outside of it.

If the idea of sanitising the crime scene seems extreme, consider that in no crime scene photos are there any clear foot or stump prints – in blood – leading to or away from the crime scene.  Why not?

Surely if Oscar beat down the door, picked Reeva up, was covered in her blood [so much so that he washed it off his hands and chest], surely he stepped in her blood at some stage? But he didn’t. Those prints should be there but they aren’t. 

There are no bloody stump prints in the passage of the carpet, in the bathroom, down the stairs, in the fabric of the carpet of Oscar’s bedroom, which he needed to navigate to go downstairs [while carrying Reeva].  So where are those bloody prints?

What happens when we put a real model behind the door?

Where is the remorse in someone who pretends someone is alive when they aren’t, and cleans up a crime scene moments after killing someone?

What happens when the real person re-emerges behind the door is that her murder is no longer trivialised. The opposite of minimising, or intentionally underestimating someone, is highlighting and emphasising who they were, and what happened to them.  Only when we do that is the true nature of the crime made manifest.

The Dark Matter of the Oscar Behind the Great Pretender [White Horse II Review]

WHITE HORSE II: Oscar Pistorius

Review by Melissa Manzella, August 21, 2016

oscar 1

“A brilliant narrative, replete with super sharp observations of both the case and the characters, this narrative brings the truth into ever clearer focus, and does so by having a kind of running theme on the ‘real’ narrative, Oscar knowingly killed Reeva, versus the ‘bogus’ one, Oscar thought he faced an intruder, referencing both often. In doing this, one really sees the flaws in the bogus one.

These two have such a good grasp of the case, having sorted Oscar long ago, and that now applies to their narrative of what happened the night Oscar killed Reeva, and I consider it to be definitive. In this narrative, the reader is brought early on to what may be a fascinating juncture in the case, this involving the rescheduling of sentence date by Judge Masipa, a matter which otherwise might be seen as an ordinary one, except that it was sentencing and the author was in court and caught the face of surprise on Prosecutor Nel, who obviously wasn’t expecting it.

He also noted an awkward looking Masipa, whom he thought looked to be gazing Roux’s way, for some kind of direction. Perhaps guidance on that date? This is what occurred to Van der Leek as he watched this exchange unfold. She changed it from June 17th, to July 6. With this single observation by Van Der Leek, bewildered trial watchers the world over who’d witnessed two vastly different Oscars at the sentencing hearing as opposed to the sentencing, might have just received clarity. We’re talking about collusion here, or more appropriately, the possibility thereof.

Without giving too much of the book away, the author does establish a plausible nexus between the rescheduling of this sentencing date, and a particular activity Oscar was engaged in at the time, outside of the realm of court. Did it happen? Well, Van der Leek doesn’t commit to saying that it did, but does supply the reader with relevant facts that would support it, and leaves readers to draw their own conclusions. Who knows if there was trickery afoot? Who knows that there wasn’t?

Here’s what I like about Van der Leek, and Wilson too, for that matter. They see something that looks wrong, and aren’t afraid to say it. They’ve always called a spade a spade, and have gone where the evidence has led them. Nick also talks about where he thinks this case went wrong, and it’s his belief that Masipa might have had her limitations, with that said, might simply have been overwhelmed with so much evidence. He thinks the case could have benefitted from a narrative, something that might have served to help her focus. He wishes Nel might have employed such. I tend to agree with him. He mentions that as a legal matter, and especially before a judge, showing motive certainly isn’t required but in this case might have been helpful.

Oscar being the scoundrel that he is, did an interview for ITV weeks before his sentence, looked well as he lied and cried his way through it, and then wouldn’t bother to take the stand in court. Van der Leek considers Mark Williams-Thomas the king of the soft ball questions, noting his bias. This narrative also saw new evidence emerge to do with the blood, and the authors made a crucial find here to do with Reeva that is a real game changer! Wow. I’ve not seen what they found documented anywhere else, so leads me to believe they were first in this finding! Impressive.

Both lament the fact that the bogus narrative is now the legal one, and Nick was incensed at Masipa’s doubling down at sentencing, memorializing this joke of a conviction. I’m hearing now however, that there’s a chance for a counter that may be coming down the pike in White Horse III, and I definitely say cheers to that! Looking forward to that read.”

WHITE HORSE II is Available on Amazon

WH2 Cover


Shakedown Reviews Blade Runner Killer, Oscar Pistorius – Part 2

Listen to clips from the film and hear our views on the relationship between Reeva and Oscar…

Reeva’s Twitter timeline from January – February 2013…

The BEST mommy in the world  #flu #moms #love http://instagr.am/p/USx-pxwPZN/

3:38 AM – 10 Jan 2013

View this post on Instagram

The BEST mommy in the world ☺ #flu #moms #love

A post shared by Reeva Steenkamp (@reevasteenkamp) on

Yaaaaawn!!!! Let me know when you’re done wasting your time trying to wear me down *files my nails*

5:42 PM – 11 Jan 2013

Finally feeling better today! Time to get back into  #brandnewme #2013

12:05 AM – 14 Jan 2013

My favourite sketch at the moment #art #expression #thought #beautiful http://instagr.am/p/UjRot1wPdj/

1:23 PM – 16 Jan 2013

Out of every misery, you WILL find your rainbow. A lesson. A truth. Nothing is a wasted experience if you look with willing eyes!

4:38 AM – 16 Jan 2013

Still can’t believe I went to the movies last night! First time in years!!! It was fun but I prefer DVDs at home. What have u seen lately?

12:00 PM – 16 Jan 2013

” You built your walls so high, no one could climb it. But I’m gonna try boy … Would you let me see beneath your beautiful … ”

18 Jan 2013

My new apartment will have one of these guys in it ….  http://instagr.am/p/UrK8zewPbw/

2:58 PM – 19 Jan 2013

OK blocked and reported times 5. Seriously, if I am that distasteful and repulsive to you then please don’t follow what I am doing. Thanks.

1:45 PM – 21 Jan 2013

This week has taught me that people will say what they like about you regardless&others will believe them.Carry on anyway.Be brave.Be you.

2:17 PM – 27 Jan 2013

28 Jan 2013

Sometimes your blessings lay beneath a mountain of tribulations. Be patient and see them through. You will appreciate them far more!

Some days you just want to stay in bed and nap and think and watch tv and drink tea. It’s those “I need my mommy” days.

8:39 AM – 29 Jan 2013

#FF The most amazing PR company in SA @CapacityR Thank you for always looking after me at events. World class! Cc @CandyGoldring

5:32 AM – 1 Feb 2013

He certainly doesn’t need more followers but he’s beautiful to look at & says some smart stuff too 😉 @OscarPistorius

Fun at the Vaal  http://instagr.am/p/VRiyRowPbb/

12:37 PM – 3 Feb 2013

Thinking of Valentine’s Day well ahead of time – in love with love as Gina Myers put it


Grab a copy of the latest @People_SA I’m wearing a few numbers to inspire those ladies looking to spoil their men on Valentines Day 🙂 #Love

10:11 AM – 4 Feb 2013

The queue … Is queueish … At home affairs …. It’s all wrap around and stuff. Fml.

4:25 AM – 4 Feb 2013

Preparing to go overseas?



Yes, push into the queue that we’ve all been patiently waiting in AND don’t say thank you.

11:55 AM – 6 Feb 2013

New rules:


8 Feb 2013

Lying on a blanky in the garden with my @gi_myers breathing in some fresh air and chatting about life. http://instagr.am/p/VeRGH5QPZm/



Let the hate motivate.

5:12 AM – 6 Feb 2013



Before you lift a pen or raise your voice to criticise, acknowledge people’s circumstances. You don’t know their struggles. Their journey.

1:54 AM – 8 Feb 2013


When it takes you an entire day to try and compose a fitting response, a lacking one at that, rather leave it. It’s just substandard.

7:48 PM – 7 Feb 2013

: Funeral begins for Anene Booysen: ” RIP princess!

Winter Throwback. Myself and at a track day with .



Excited for a chilled Saturday evening in with good food, movies, popcorn, frozen yoghurt & my boo. #happiness #love #chilling #weekend

6:56 AM – 9 Feb 2013

It’s the last supper with 😦 I think and I will kidnap you forever!!!!

(Martin Rooney leaves 10th of Feb. Murder happens 4 nights later.)

I woke up in a happy safe home this morning. Not everyone did. Speak out against the rape of individuals… http://instagr.am/p/Viq8nNwPRy/

11:17 PM – 9 Feb, 2013


When you fall in love with someone’s personality everything about them becomes beautiful.

12:15AM – 9 Feb, 2013

Check out The Link tonight 4 a sneak peek of “Tropika Islands of Treasure” , ,

It’s a beautiful day!Make things happen.Starting my day off with a yummy healthy shake from my boo 🙂

 What do you have up your sleeve for your love tomorrow???

3:37 AM – 13 Feb 2013


4:34 AM – 13 Feb 2013





Shakedown Reviews Blade Runner Killer, Oscar Pistorius – Part 1


Listen to clips, and hear #Shakedown’s review of the film…


Reeva’s Twitter Timeline from 2007 – January 2013…

July 31, 2007

keeping a secret…

July 31, 2007

excited to see the King again xxxx.

But in August, whilst auditioning for a spot on Top Billing, and signing up with ice Models, Reeva hints at some financial difficulties in her early days in Johannesburg. She also reveals a protracted struggle to find the right man, losing her phone, the trials and tribulations of the nightclubbing scene, and her innermost feelings of conflict and frustration – did she make the right choice to pursue modelling?  A close friend passes away in the same month and Reeva is missing her parents.

After dropping a few hints, Reeva first mentions Warren on Facebook on October 11, 2007, nearly 4 months after their first meeting.

October 11, 2007

at home doing work…it’s nice having Warren here to keep me company…

But 2008 proves to be a year Reeva would prefer to forget.  On April 7 Reeva posts:

‘[I stand] corrected. You do not get over the past. The past decides when to let go of you.’

On May 8, 2008, Reeva changes her relationship status on Facebook to ‘In a relationship’ although Warren and Reeva have been an item since January.

(They spend Christmas and New Years apart)

Going to miss some of my best people tonight @OscarPistorius @gi_myers @Iamfomo Have the most amazing night crazies! Send piccies 🙂

1:33 PM – 31 Dec 2012

No reply from Oscar or deleted.

I’ve learnt many valuable lessons this year. Thank you 2012 for the education! Above all, “trust your inner voice” stands out for me. #2013

12:52 AM – 31 Dec 2012

Flies to Cape Town on New Years Day

The chauffeurs in Cape Town hey. Nice! http://instagr.am/p/UBZZG0wPV5/

4:38 AM – 3 Jan 2013

Home time! Back to work. Thank you Cape Town & all the special people who made this break memorable! #friends #family #ocean #sunshine

3:40 AM – 7 Jan 2013

Visiting my boo on set. He shoots more than me! I need to up my game!!! #manonfire

3:47 AM – 10 Jan 2013

1506863434 (1)april-screams-in-the-night-oscar-cp











2016 was good to us

#Shakedown will continue working hard to unravel some of the highest-profile crimes in the world in 2017.

Nick and I started this venture into true crime writing in 2014 as two curious people on opposite ends of the planet trying to figure out who the other Oscar Pistorius was; not the one burbling in court, the other one.

In three years we’ve written thirteen books to that end, eight covering the trial as it unfolded, two covering the appeal [which we both attended] and three covering the sentencing [which Nick attended]. Did we succeed in exposing the Other Oscar?

In 2017 Nick will appear in a documentary that covers the unanswered questions that still linger in that case.  Unanswered questions are our specialty.  We believe with enough resolve, all can be brought to light.

What has surprised us as authors is just how much information is buried in plain sight, and further, how much more can be found when one scratches just below the surface.

We believe we’ve found a golden thread where many other narratives either simply rehash news stories or get lost in minutiae, or simply go off track following a tangent to its illogical conclusion.

“There is nothing worse for the lying soul, than the mirror of reality”..Steve Maraboli… The White Horse trilogy, (written with penetrating insight by Nick and Lisa) explodes into our consciousness revealing the reality of the tangled web of lies that remained after the trial of Oscar Pistorius … This tragedy is truly a mirror, blinding in its fractured and splintered reflections revealing the emptiness behind a mask… Brilliant!

In an incredibly short span of time, people from around the world have found value in our deep drilling interrogations.  Our aim has been to create authentic narratives, and to go further than the definitive accounts do in uncovering powerful insights and exposing the clear psychological patterns driving these cases.

Where others concede defeat, do we come up with brand new explanations that integrate all the data in a credible fashion?  Our readers have quickly become just as obsessed as we are with our thorough interrogations, and as a result, our work has been all consuming. It consumes our energies and our readers quickly become addicted to the “no holds barred” quality of it.

Our 20 highlights from 2016:

  1. #Shakedown published 18 books this year covering the cases of:  Steven Avery, OJ Simpson, Oscar Pistorius and JonBenét Ramsey.
  2. Nick added three more books to his popular series of mountain narratives with the release of Neverest II and III, as well as his narrative focusing on the tragedy at K I I.
  3. By March, our books regularly started making the bestsellers list.
  4. Juice, published on March 6, was a #1 bestseller consistently for more than 4 weeks straight.
  5. Ten of our books would go on to be #1 bestsellers by the end of 2016.
  6. On May 20, #Shakedown launched its website.
  7. On June 17, only one month later, we got 41,334 hits in a single day.   The story that inspired so many people to visit our site was the publishing of Reeva Steenkamp’s crime scene photos.  On June 16, Barry Steenkamp, Reeva’s father, pleaded with Judge Masipa to let the world see what Oscar had done to her.  He asked, we answered, and the world responded.
  8. Nick spent three days at the High Court in Pretoria for Oscar’s sentencing.  While there, Nick met privately with Gerrie Nel and Andrea Johnson to provide a tip. He also had a chance to briefly reunite with Barry and June.   From that experience, three additional Oscar narratives titled White Horse were conceived.
  9. Also in June, we collaborated with Beth Karas regarding Oscar’s manipulation of the crime scene.  That interview achieved over 1,000 views in just a few short days.
  10. Beth would join us again in the fall for a discussion about JonBenét Ramsey.
  11. Additional interviews and podcasts included discussions with Leonard Carr, Dr. Lillian Glass and the Mollett brothers.
  12. After months of research, on September 13, we published our first book on JonBenét titled The Craven Silence.
  13. Three weeks later, on October 5, the top news site in Australia interviewed us about our work on the JonBenét case.  Their article was then picked up by numerous other sites not only in Australia but also in New Zealand and parts of Europe.
  14. Since that time, we’ve published two complete trilogies on America’s most famous unsolved case – a total of six books with three more in the pipeline.   For both Nick and I, this case has been by far the most challenging, most emotionally draining, and rewarding thus far  In 2017, we’ll be visiting Boulder to bring you more on this story.
  15. Smack dab in the middle of our JonBenét work, Nick was approached by a producer he’d met in Pretoria back in June.  That producer will soon be completing a documentary about Oscar.
  16. Of the eighteen books published this year, two I haven’t mentioned yet are Nick’s solo works:  Hot Water, the story of Michael Phelps, and White Privilege, a fascinating and scathing interrogation of race in South Africa.
  17. To date, our most reviewed books are Deceit [67], Neverest [45], Audacity [44], Dark Matter [28], Fool’s Paradise [18] and The Craven Silence [18].  Recidivist Acts, which was an assemblage of both published and unpublished investigative magazine and newspaper articles covering Oscar Pistorius, has the highest average review rating of 4.8/5.
  18. On December 18th we reached a new milestone in Kindle pages read in a single day – 9964 pages read over a 24 hour period.
  19. Nick also signed an exclusive publishing contract for his Bloodline fantasy fiction in November 2016 with an American publisher.
  20. I’ll leave you with one more statistic.  I’m sure our loyal readers will appreciate this one.  The book that wins the award for most F-bombs goes to Juice.  Nick and I tore it up with a whopping 47!

We have a lot of really exciting stuff planned for you in 2017.  In addition to our continued narratives on JonBenét, Oscar and OJ, we’ll be tackling the upcoming murder trial of Robert Durst. robert-durst

Durst will be in court in Los Angeles early in the year, while CBS slugs it out in an epic $750 million lawsuit against Burke Ramsey.  The cases of Oscar Pistorius and Steven Avery are still ongoing.  And what is Jodi Arias up to?

If there are books you want to read that we haven’t written yet, leave a comment and perhaps we’ll bump some up or down the schedule based on your feedback.

A good year starts with a commitment from all of us to simply be better. Things change gradually and along a prescribed continuum.

Goodness –> Greatness –> Great Balls of Fire!

We hope our work continues to inspire you wherever you are on your road to greatness.