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Mistrial in Killing of Black Man by Ex-Cincinnati Police Officer

Mistrial in Killing of Black Man by Ex-Cincinnati Police Officer

 (AP)

Saturday, 12 November 2016 11:52 AM

An Ohio judge declared a mistrial on Saturday, finding jurors hopelessly deadlocked in the case of a white former University of Cincinnati police officer charged with murder in the shooting death of a black motorist during a traffic stop last year.

The panel of six white men, four white women and two black women began deliberating on Wednesday at the Common Pleas Court in Hamilton County on whether former officer Ray Tensing was guilty of murder or voluntary manslaughter in the fatal shooting of Samuel DuBose.

On Friday, the jurors told Judge Megan Shanahan they had failed to agree on a verdict. She ordered them to redouble their efforts, listen to one another and reexamine their views.

"You are again saying that after a night of sleep and two additional hours of deliberations, you are unable to reach a unanimous verdict," Shanahan said on Saturday morning. "By reason of your inability to reach a verdict, I declare this case a mistrial."

Tensing, who had pleaded not guilty and was free on $1 million bond, drank from a water bottle and made no dramatic reaction as the judge declared the mistrial. No members of DuBose's family were present.

Tensing was fired from the University of Cincinnati Police Department after being indicted in July 2015.

DuBose's killing fueled demonstrations against use of lethal force by white officers against unarmed blacks and other minorities, an issue which has been the focus of nationwide protests and a renewed national debate over racial bias in the criminal justice system.

Body-camera video of the July 2015 incident showed Tensing, 26, shooting Samuel DuBose, 43, in the head after pulling him over for a missing license plate on his vehicle.

During the traffic stop, which took near the southeast edge of the University of Cincinnati's main campus, Tensing asked DuBose to remove his seatbelt and tried to open the car door. DuBose did not comply and closed the door. The vehicle started rolling forward slowly as Tensing pulled his gun and fired once.

 

During closing arguments in the case, the defense maintained that Tensing feared for his life and opened fire in an attempt to prevent being run over by DuBose's car or pinned to a nearby guard rail.

In emotional testimony on Tuesday, Tensing told the court he had no intention of killing DuBose when he opened fire.

The defense countered by arguing that Tensing was never in danger and that he had falsified his account by exaggerating that he was being dragged by DuBose's vehicle.

© 2019 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

   
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An Ohio judge declared a mistrial on Saturday, finding jurors hopelessly deadlocked in the case of a white former University of Cincinnati police officer charged with murder in the shooting death of a black motorist during a traffic stop last year.
mistrial, Cincinnati, police, black, man, killing
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2016-52-12
Saturday, 12 November 2016 11:52 AM
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