Oscar Pistorius murder charge: 'police find steroids'

Police are investigating the possibility that Oscar Pistorius was under the influence of banned steroids when his girlfriend was shot dead last week, according to a report.

The Sun today claimed that, along with a bloodied cricket bat, police found outlawed performance-enhancing drugs at the South African athlete's home in Pretoria.

Pistorius, 26, has been charged with the murder of model Reeva Steenkamp, and police are now considering the possibility that so-called 'roid-rage', a side-effect of the use of steroids in high doses, was a contributing factor.

Blood samples have also been taken for analysis from the Paralympic sprinter, who at London 2012 became the first amputee to compete in an Olympic Games.

The Sun quoted "a source close to the investigation" as saying: “Steroid drugs were found at Pistorius’ home together with evidence of heavy drinking. That’s why police have specifically ordered that he be tested for steroids.”

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The International Paralympic Committee has said Pistorius returned negative samples from two tests that were performed on him prior to and during the Paralympic Games in London last summer.

IPC head of communications Craig Spence told the Telegraph: "It is purely speculation at the moment and it is a police matter involving a criminal case, so we will not be contacting the South African police.

"What we can reveal, however, is that Oscar Pistorius was tested twice in London. Once out of competition on 25 August, and once during competition on 8 September.

"The tests were negative. Otherwise the IPC would have suspended him."

Miss Steenkamp was shot dead at Pistorius' home on Thursday - Valentine's Day. Pistorius remained on remand in a Pretoria police station after a hearing on Friday at which prosecutors said they intended to pursue a case of premeditated murder, an accusation that his family says he vehemently denies.

His arrest prompted rumours that he may have mistaken his girlfriend for an intruder in what could have been a Valentine's Day surprise gone wrong. But police distanced themselves from that suggestion and said there had been previous incidents of a "domestic nature" at Pistorius's property.

Pistorius will appear in court tomorrow for a bail hearing, something police have said they will oppose.

Barry Steenkamp, the father of the victim, has said that his family was trying to come to terms with his daughter's death, but added that, "There is no hatred in our hearts."

"He [Pistorius] must be going through things that we don't know about", Mr Steenkamp told the Mail on Sunday. "We ask the Lord every day to help us find a reason why this should happen to Reeva. She was the most beautiful, kind girl in the world."

Pistorius' management company issued a statement announcing it had "no option" but to cancel all future races the double amputee had been contracted to compete in as Pistorius' "key focus is defending himself against this serious charge".

The statement, made by managing agent Peet van Zyl, said: "I have decided that following these tragic events that we have no option but to cancel all future races that Oscar Pistorius had been contracted to compete in, to allow Oscar to concentrate on the upcoming legal proceedings and to help and support all those involved as they try to come to terms with this very difficult and distressing situation."

Pistorius was contracted to compete in the Manchester City Games on 25 May, following races in Australia on 9 and 16 March, as well as meetings in Rio de Janeiro (31 March) and Iowa (26 April).

The statement continued: "Regarding sponsors and partners, I can confirm that at this point in time, all parties are supportive and their contractual commitments are maintained. They have said they are happy to let the legal process takes its course before making any change in their position."