Despite Dismissed Murder Charges, Federal Investigation Begins
An Ohio judge ruled Monday to drop voluntary manslaughter and murder charges against an Ohio police officer who shot and killed an unarmed black motorist in 2015.
The charges against former officer Ray Tensing were dropped with prejudice, meaning they cannot be brought against him again. Tensing went through two hung jury trials for the 2015 shooting of Sam DuBose during a traffic stop near the University of Cincinnati. Despite the dismissal, however, he could still face a federal indictment, the Cincinnati Inquirer reported.
After two hung juries which were declared mistrials, jurors reportedly told Deters that they would never be able to get 12 people to convict a police officer. Judge Leslie Ghiz was confident in her decision to dismiss the charges, going so far as to apologize for “dragging” the parties to court for an unnecessary hearing.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office is now opening a civil rights investigation into Tensing’s actions. The investigation, which can take certain evidence into account that was not allowed in trial, could take years, WKRC reported.
The Daily Caller reports that the court dismissed two pieces of evidence during the trial: the shirt Tensing was wearing at the time of the shooting, which depicted a Confederate flag, as well as the fact that 80 percent of the people Tensing pulled over for traffic stops were black.