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Pistorious Freed On Bail

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Pretoria, South Africa -

A judge has freed South African sprinter Oscar Pistorius from a South African jail, until he goes on trial for murder. Prosecutors said the runner was a flight risk, but the judge disagreed. Former Olympian and murder suspect Oscar Pistorius won his court battle to be released from a South African jail. A judge granted the athlete bail after weighing several days of testimony. Pistorius' lawyers told the judge, the athlete known as the blade runner for his prosthetic racing legs, is too famous to flee bail. They said his artificial legs would not go unnoticed through airport security. But Prosecutors said the Paralympic star, who is a national hero, should not expect special treatment. They argued the runner had the "money, means and motive" to flee. Prosecutors claim Pistorius intended to kill his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, when he pumped four bullets into his bathroom door. Defense lawyers say the former Olympian acted on instinct when he thought an intruder was in his upscale home. An unexpected twist came yesterday. Police dropped the lead detective Hilton Botha from the case - because he himself is facing seven attempted murder charges from a shooting in 2011. The defense accused Botha of sloppy police work - saying he contaminated the crime scene and kept changing his story. A trial is likely still months away but some South Africans have already made up their minds.

The judge asked Pistorius' lawyer if he thought there would be shock if Pistorius was released. The defense said there would be shock if he wasn't.