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Pistorius' former friend tells of fits of anger

| Tuesday, March 11, 2014, 5:36 p.m.

PRETORIA, South Africa — Oscar Pistorius fired guns in public in the months before he killed his girlfriend — once out of a car sunroof on a road and once in a restaurant, a onetime friend said at the athlete's murder trial on Tuesday.

The account by Darren Fresco portrayed Pistorius as a reckless hothead infatuated with firearms and seemingly drifting down a precarious path before he fatally shot Reeva Steenkamp through a closed toilet door at his home before dawn on Feb. 14, 2013.

Fresco's description of how Pistorius once berated a police officer fit the prosecution's attempts to cast the double-amputee athlete as prone to flashes of anger and blinded by an inflated sense of entitlement at a time when his public image was that of a clean-cut poster boy for overcoming adversity.

“I said to him, are you (expletive) mad?” Fresco testified after, he said, Pistorius fired his gun out of the sunroof of the car later on the same day that he had the dispute with the police officer. “He just laughed.”

Fresco and a former Pistorius girlfriend have testified that the Olympian shot his gun out of the car sunroof later that day. But their stories do not match in parts, a fact highlighted by defense lawyer Barry Roux.

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