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The last thing we need as a nation right now is a cold, hard dose of social injustice, but that didn’t stop an Ohio judge from declaring a mistrial in the case against a white police officer charged with the murder of Sam DuBose.
The 43-year-old Dubose, an African American, was unarmed when 26-year-old University of Cincinnati officer Ray Tensing pulled him over in Mount Auburn for a routine traffic stop. When DuBose proceeded to flee the scene, Tensing shot him in the head, killing him instantly.
Despite the prosecution’s assertion that Tensing’s life was never actually in a danger, a fact proven by his own body camera footage, a jury was deadlocked after 25 hours of deliberation, the Associated Press reports.
Prosecutors now have two weeks to decide whether they want to retry Tensing. According to Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters, the jury came close to acquitting Tensing of the far more serious charge of murder, and convicting him of voluntary manslaughter instead. Despite the progress, the jury remained knotted at 8-4 in favor of conviction.
"It's obvious to me you have made a sincere and conscientious effort," the judge told a jury that consisted of six men, and six women, 10 of whom were white, while only two were black.
The case has sparked outrage in the Ohio community, a fact made evident by the 1000 protesters who marched through the streets of downtown after the mistrial was announced. "Downtown is safe. The city is safe. We are going to get through this," said Mayor John Cranley in a statement. "People are going to be angry, and they have every right to express their First Amendment rights and they will do so peacefully."