02:20 - Source: CNN
CNN Exclusive: Pistorius in prison

Story highlights

Pistorius shot his girlfriend to death on Valentine's Day 2013

He has said he mistook her for an intruder

A judge sentenced him to five years in prison last year

CNN —  

A South African parole board is meeting to decide whether to keep Oscar Pistorius in prison – where he’s been since he was convicted last year in his girlfriend’s fatal shooting.

He had been in prison since October last year, when a judge sentenced him to five years for culpable homicide in the killing of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp.

Pistorius shot the model and law school graduate on Valentine’s Day 2013. He has said he mistook her for an intruder.

Last week a South African parole board said it had approved his placement under house arrest and correctional supervision for four years.

“The parole board considered all submissions, including the offender’s profile report, the directives of the parole review board and the submission of the victim’s family,” the statement said.

“The parole board has also given the offender his correctional supervision conditions,which include the directives of the parole review board,” it said.

Correctional services officials said they will not release details on the conditions of his release.

‘Nothing will bring Reeva back’

After the parole board’s decision last week, a lawyer for the Steenkamp family said they saw it coming.

“Nothing has changed for June and Barry, nothing will bring Reeva back,” Tania Koen said, referring to Steenkamp’s parents. “They are not surprised at all by this announcement. They expected this.”

During Pistorius’ sentencing, his defense team believed he would be eligible to transfer to house arrest on August 21 – 10 months after he was sentenced.

The nation’s correctional services act allows convicted criminals who have served at least one-sixth of their sentence to serve the remainder under house arrest.

In August, the justice ministry made a last-minute intervention, blocking his release and asking a parole review board to look at his case.

The parole review board Monday referred the case back to the broader correctional supervision and parole board for reconsideration.

“The decision … is to refer the (matter) back to the parole board because they believe the decision (to possibly let him out of jail) was made prematurely, Pistorius’ lawyer Brian Webber said.

‘Blade Runner’

News of Steenkamp’s killing stunned the nation, where Pistorius is nicknamed the “Blade Runner” because he ran on special carbon-fiber prostheses.

Despite having both legs amputated below the knee as a toddler, he excelled in sports, representing his country in the Paralympic Games and the 2012 London Olympics.

Steenkamp was found shot to death in Pistorius’ home, and he acknowledged firing the fatal shots through his bathroom door. He said he mistook his girlfriend, who was a model and law school graduate, for an intruder.

Last year, a judge found him “negligent” in Steenkamp’s death. But the judge said he did not commit murder nor did he intend to kill her.

Prosecutors are appealing the verdict, believing Pistorius, who is now 28, should be convicted of murder.

The state’s appeal is set to take place next month.

But the country’s justice minister ordered a review of that decision, on the grounds that the parole ruling may have been made too early.

CNN’s Brent Swails and Susannah Cullinane contributed to this report.