Jury Hangs In The Retrial of Ray Tensing

Ray Tensing, the former University of Cincinnati police officer who fatally shot 43-year-old Sam DuBose in July 15, 2015, first went to trial for voluntary manslaughter and murder in 2016. That jury hung.  We followed that trial and you can read it here and here.

Tensing’s retrial began June 8, 2017.   The jury deliberated for more than 25 hours.  Today, the judge declared a mistrial.

Joe Deters, Hamilton County Prosecutor, said he will not comment until next week.

Jurors had questions during deliberations.  I am looking for those questions and if I locate them, I’ll post them in the comment section.


The DuBose family said in a statement through an attorney, “We are outraged that a second jury has now failed to convict Ray Tensing for the murder of our beloved Sam DuBose.” The family is demanding another retrial, the statement said.

The family of Sam Dubose was represented in a civil case by attorney Mark O’Mara.  You might remember his name as one of the defense attorneys for George Zimmerman who killed 17-year old, unarmed Trayvon Martin.  In January 2016, O’Mara announced the settlement in the civil case for DuBose’s family, and he stated;

“Tensing, a white officer, wrote 81% of his traffic tickets to African Americans, who make up 45% of the Cincinnati population.”

“But when a reporter asked me if the family was happy with the settlement, I said “no.” The family is not and should not be happy with a settlement — not at $5 million, and not at $50 million. There is no happy ending here, as no sum can bring back Sam.”

“At this point, it’s not about being happy; it is about using Sam’s legacy to make sure this type of violence doesn’t happen to someone else. It is about sending a message that institutions that permit racial bias to infect their ranks do so at great financial risk. From that perspective, this settlement is an important victory.”

“Nonetheless, there is more work to do.”

“As a criminal defense attorney, over the last 30-plus years, I’ve seen the criminal justice system work disproportionately against Black defendants. In the last few years, due to cell phone videos and body cam videos, it has become increasingly clear to all of us that the bias in the justice system is the same bias that is still deeply rooted in our entire society. I hope the silver lining of all of these tragedies is that we are finally forced to address the problems, rather than ignore them.”

“I’ve been honored that the families of Sam DuBose, Mathew Ajibade, and Sean Grant have come to me to take on their fight. When I started my career as criminal defense attorney, I had no idea that it would lead to the opportunity to be a civil rights lawyer as well. But now that it has happened, it seems like it is what I’ve always been meant to do.”


Posted on 06/23/2017, in Sam DuBose, Trial Videos and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.

  1. It appears that the majority of the jurors deliberating on cases of this nature don’t want to hold police officers accountable when they kill civilians, especially when that civilian was a black male.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Warner, yes. I think the juries are judging the victims and finding them unworthy of life. It is not only based on race. The jury in the trial of former Milwaukee police officer Dominique Heaggan-Brown found him not guilty for killing Sylville Smith. Both Heaggan-Brown and Smith are Black.

      The first officer who went to trial for the death of Freddie Gray is Black, and the jury hung.

      It is not a far stretch to say that some jurors are afraid of repercussions if they find officers or former officers guilty. Their personal information is provided to the attorneys, including defense attorneys, and they are afraid of being harassed and maybe even wrongfully accused of a crime because they decided on a guilty verdict.

      Until legislatures give trial juries the same protections as grand juries, their personal fears will always frame the decision they make.

      Liked by 5 people

      • You are correct. However, in today’s world I would think the jurors would fear repercussions from the public as much as law enforcement. People are fed up with jurors constantly acquitting police officers.

        Liked by 2 people

        • Warner,
          True, but the public does not have authority to stop and ticket for any reason and to put people behind bars.

          This is not to use a broad brush, because fear is only one aspect for why some jurors decide the way they do.

          Liked by 3 people

  2. Mr. Militant Negro

    Reblogged this on The Militant Negro™.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. yahtzeebutterfly

    This rose display was created in August 2015 at the University of Cincinnati by family, friends, and others in honor of Samuel Dubose.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. What’s it going to take to find these officers guilty?? I am floored.


    • Hi Mindyme. I wish I had the answer to that. Off the top of my head, it is going to take unbiased jurors. It is going to take prosecutors to argue abuse of authority rather than how officers are trained to “eliminate” human beings as if they are objects.

      If officers testify on their own behalf, on cross, they should be asked why they wanted a job in a community where they do not live, where the residents do not look like them, and where they do not participate in programs to prevent crime.

      It’s going to take jurors who are unafraid of harmful repercussions and retaliation if finding guilt. In the alternative, state legislatures need to pass law to protect the personal information of jurors the same as they do for grand juries

      Liked by 2 people

  5. yahtzeebutterfly

    I transcribed Rev. Al Sharpton’s words from today. For me, it is a pep talk:

    “…Joe Lowery, Martin Luther King, and Wyatt T. Walker could keep fighting when their homes were bombed; keep fighting when, for nine years between the one government bus boycott, before they finally got a Civil Rights Act, nine years where different people were questioning them, and they were attacked by the Right and attacked even in their community. There was always a difference of opinion. Rev. Martin, then there was a Malcolm, and then there was the young members of SNCC disagreed. But, then you had Julian Bond and Jesse Jackson that did agree.

    “There was always tension, always friction, yet they kept going. You are not judged by your victories. You are judged by if you keep fighting in the face of defeat; if you keep fighting in the face of criticism; if you keep even when those on your side turn on you. That’s when we see who are the real activists, real patriots, the real ( ?) in reform is.

    “Yes, it’s been a tough week for those of us that believe in reform. That means only the tough will get off the mat and keep fighting. The rest will lay on the mat and start the blame game and start making excuses.”
    ~Rev. Al Sharpton

    Liked by 2 people

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