Olympic and Paralympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius is currently standing trial in South Africa after being accused of killing his girlfriend, 29-year-old model Reeva Steenkamp, on Valentine's Day in 2013. His lawyers have said the shooting was a tragic mistake, and Pistorius was acting in self-defense against what he thought was an intruder.
Following are some other athletes involved in high-profile criminal cases:
*Former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez faces scrutiny after the shooting death of a semi-professional football player.
* In December 2012, Kansas City Chiefs starting linebacker Jovan Belcher, 25, shot his girlfriend to death, then drove to the team training facility and killed himself in front of his head coach and general manager.
* Dallas Cowboys defensive tackle Josh Brent was indicted by a Dallas County grand jury on one count of intoxication manslaughter stemming from a December 2012 crash in Irving, Texas, that killed his friend and Cowboys practice squad member Jerry Brown Jr.
* NFL quarterback Michael Vick was arrested in 2007 and spent 18 months in federal prison after pleading guilty to bankrolling an illegal dog-fighting ring. He was allowed back into the league after serving his sentence.
* Cincinnati Bengals defensive back Adam "Pacman" Jones last year was ordered by a Nevada jury to pay $11.6 million to three plaintiffs for his role in a 2007 shooting incident at a Las Vegas strip club that paralyzed one man from the waist down. Minutes after Jones tossed money into the air, a brawl ensued outside the club and an associate of the football player began shooting into a group of people, police said.
* Retired NFL linebacker Ray Lewis was linked to a double murder that occurred outside an Atlanta nightclub after a Super Bowl party in 2000. He was charged with murder but later pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice and was fined $250,000 by the NFL.
* Former NBA star Jayson Williams served 18 months of a five-year sentence for the 2002 accidental shooting death of limousine driver Costas Christofi with a 12-gauge shotgun at Williams' New Jersey mansion. Williams, who had been showing the gun to friends without securing its safety, pleaded guilty to aggravated assault in 2010.
* O.J. Simpson, a star NFL running back turned actor, was acquitted in the 1994 stabbing and slashing murders of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend Ronald Goldman in Los Angeles. Simpson is serving up to 33 years in prison for his 2008 conviction on 12 charges, including kidnapping and armed robbery, for taking thousands of dollars in memorabilia from a pair of sports collectors at gunpoint in a Las Vegas hotel.
* NFL wide receiver Plaxico Burress served 20 months in prison after accidentally shooting himself in 2008 at a nightclub, a season after catching the Super Bowl-winning touchdown for the New York Giants.Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun