The family of Oscar Pistorius , who has been charged in the shooting death of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, is distancing itself from comments made by the Olympic runner's father about guns and crime in South Africa.
In an interview with the U.K.'s Telegraph newspaper, Henke Pistorius said that "some of the guns" his son and other family members own "are for hunting and some are for protection. It speaks to the ANC [African National Congress] government, look at white crime levels, why protection is so poor in this country, it's an aspect of our society."
However, in a statement released on Monday, the Pistorius family says it is "deeply concerned" about Henke's remarks.
"The Pistorius family owns weapons purely for sport and hunting purposes," insisted family spokesperson Arnold Pistorius in the statement. "Henke's interview with the newspaper was unapproved by our media liaison team. The comments do not represent the views of Oscar or the rest of the Pistorius family."
He added, "We are acutely aware of the fact that we are only at the beginning of a long road to prove that what happened to Reeva Steenkamp was a terrible accident and that Oscar never intended to harm her, let alone cause her death.
"As a family, and Oscar in particular, we will never be the same after the tragic events on 14 February this year. We are still in deep mourning, trying to come to terms with what happened. For this reason and out of respect for the Steenkamp family, the Pistorius family will not grant any media interviews at this time."