CINCINNATI -- "Thank god we have a body cam," Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters said Tuesday in his opening statement at the Ray Tensing murder trial.
That body camera footage will start the second day of the trial: Jurors will watch the video of Sam DuBose's shooting death and see it introduced into evidence.
A detailed analysis of the footage will come later in the trial, but Deters said the defense did not plan to call a video expert. Instead, a state expert will break down the video for the jury.
Witness testimony also begins Wednesday morning. Deters said that his first four witnesses will all be police officers, and it’s a solid bet that these will include UC police officers Phil Kidd and David Lindenschmidt, who were first on the scene of Sam Dubose’s death, as well as Lt. Tim Barge and retired UC police officer Rick Haas.
Other law enforcement representatives on the prosecution’s witness list include Hamilton Township Police Chief Scott Hughes, who trains fellow officers, former FBI agent and forensic analyst Grant Fredericks and five members of the Cincinnati Police Department.
Deters and defense attorney Stew Matthews laid out their arguments clearly in their opening statements Tuesday: Over the course of the trial, Matthews will work to prove that Tensing acted out of a reasonable fear for his own safety in shooting Sam DuBose, and Deters will work to prove that Tensing’s actions were "totally contrary to his training, totally contrary to the laws, in this country, regarding a justified shooting."
The stakes are high for both sides, and the public pressure for Detersto secure a guilty verdict is intense. Religious groups and activist organizations like Black Lives Matter have both spoken up in to demand for "justice" for Sam Dubose, a man many view as another unarmed black victim of racially biased policing in the United States.
If the jury convicts Ray Tensing of voluntary manslaughter or murder, he could face anywhere from three years to life in prison.