CINCINNATI -- Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley said he'll spend Saturday having lunch Downtown, perhaps take a ride on the streetcar, and enjoy dinner with his wife in the urban core.
His announcement might not seem unusual on any other day. But after Judge Megan Shanahan declared a mistrial in Ray Tensing's murder case, Cranley was working to end fears that Downtown could be unsafe. Jurors deadlocked on the charges of murder and voluntary manslaughter, failing to reach a unanimous decision after 25 hours of deliberations.
"There's every reason to believe, as has been the case, that the protests, which are justified, will continue to be peaceful as they have been," Cranley said.
The mayor acknowledged many people, himself included, hoped jurors would reach a verdict in the case against Tensing, who killed unarmed motorist Samuel DuBose in July 2015. Cranley said he hoped Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters would retry the case.
"Candidly, there's a lot of reasons for people to be upset," Cranley said.
Black Lives Matter Cincinnati demonstrators gathered at the Hamilton County Courthouse at 12:30 p.m. Saturday.
SERVICE UPDATE: Streetcar service has been suspended along the downtown loop. Service will operate in OTR only.
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"We understand that this is an emotional situation," City Manager Harry Black said. "People will need to be able to express those emotions.
"We are prepared to support that, because it’s all about constitutional right in terms of assembly and expression; however, we also have a responsibility to make it safe for people and property, but so far all of the protests have been very peaceful, very constructive. We expect and anticipate that will continue. But, we are prepared to support that assembly and expression at the same time and making sure this city remains as safe as possible.”
Police Chief Elliot Isaac said the Cincinnati Police Department has extra officers on hand.
“We have a lot of additional staffing, and we’ll continue to monitor as needed to make sure that everyone has the opportunity to express themselves and things continue as safe as possible,” Isaac said.
WCPO will update this story.