Prosecutor Deters delays decision on 2nd Tensing retrial while families, public wait in limbo

Protesters plan 'mass action' for Wednesday

CINCINNATI -- Attorneys, the public and two families are in a holding pattern as they wait to hear whether Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters will continue pursuing a case against former University of Cincinnati police officer Ray Tensing.

Some aren't waiting: Several groups met Monday to plan a "mass action" for Wednesday, likely to include marches across Cincinnati.

 

After 32 hours of deliberations, a jury remained deadlocked on whether to acquit or convict Tensing in the death of Sam DuBose. Hamilton County Common Pleas Judge Leslie Ghiz declared a mistrial Friday. It was the second time a jury couldn't reach a verdict, the first mistrial coming last November.

MUST READ: How did we end up with another hung jury?

Tensing was indicted on charges of murder and voluntary manslaughter for shooting DuBose in the head during a traffic stop in the city's Mount Auburn neighborhood in July 2015. DuBose did not have a gun in the car. Tensing has claimed DuBose tried to flee in the car, leading him to fear for his life.

Deters' office said he'll announce his decision on a retrial sometime during the week of July 10. He has until July 24, which is when Ghiz scheduled the next hearing. One of the largest obstacles in his way is the fact that he cannot, at this point, add lesser charges -- charges on which a skittish juror might be more likely to convict -- to Tensing's docket.

RELATED: DuBose family demands investigation of officer for her testimony

The Countdown to Conviction Coalition, made up of groups including Black Lives Matter Cincinnati and the AMOS Project, is planning Wednesday's protests to put pressure on city officials. To them, nothing short of a murder conviction is a just outcome.

"My goal is to simply get a verdict for someone who is killed by the cops," said Brian Taylor of Black Lives Matter Cincinnati. "That message that's sent by that cop going to jail for a long time will do eons, mountains more than campaigning for legislation."

Mayor John Cranley said Friday the city is ready.

"It's understandable and justified, and our police and everybody will make sure that people can also express their anger about what happened in court," Cranley said.

 

Terina Allen, DuBose's sister, said the family has met all weekend. They'll speak publicly Tuesday afternoon. Tensing's defense attorney, Stew Mathews, said he and the Tensing family had no comment but may speak after Deters announces his decision.

For complete trial coverage, visit wcpo.com/TensingTrial.

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