CINCINNATI (CN) – The retrial of former University of Cincinnati police officer Ray Tensing on murder charges is set to begin Wednesday after a lengthy jury selection process concluded this morning.
Jury selection took over three full days and included some interesting exchanges between attorneys and prospective jurors.
One excluded juror told prosecutor Seth Tieger on Monday that Tensing “deserved a medal” for shooting and killing unarmed black man Samuel DuBose, and also called DuBose a drug dealer.
Another excluded juror in the retrial criticized the University of Cincinnati police and said they should “never be allowed off campus.”
Two prospective jurors were dismissed on Tuesday for Facebook posts, one of which read “Convict Ray Tensing – Justice for Samuel DuBose.”
The jury consists of seven white women, two white men, one black man, and two black women. The four alternate jurors include two white men, one white woman, and one black woman.
With the jury seated, Hamilton County Common Pleas Court Judge Leslie Ghiz scheduled a visit to the scene of the shooting for later this morning.
The jury’s visit to the site – slated to begin at 11:15 a.m. Eastern – will wrap up proceedings for the day, as Judge Ghiz has elected to have opening remarks start on Thursday morning.
The attorneys will not interact with members of the jury on the visit to Rice and Thill Streets in Cincinnati.
Judge Ghiz reminded jurors that she can only do so much to protect their identities if they choose to leave the bus at the scene of the shooting.
Meanwhile, certain media members are still waiting on a ruling related to a lawsuit filed against Judge Leslie Ghiz.
The suit, filed in Ohio’s First Circuit Court of Appeals, seeks the disclosure of the completed juror questionnaire forms, which are currently being withheld by Judge Ghiz over privacy concerns.
Judge Ghiz joked on Tuesday that she might “get a plaque in the courthouse for being the most sued judge.”
Tensing shot and killed DuBose, an unarmed black man, during a traffic stop in July 2015, but his first trial last year ended in a hung jury and mistrial, despite video evidence of the incident captured on Tensing’s bodycam.
The Hamilton County Prosecutor’s Office brought the same charges in Tensing’s retrial, murder and voluntary manslaughter.
Defense attorney Stew Mathews spoke at length to the jury before the courtroom broke for lunch on Tuesday, and reminded prospective jurors that the bodycam footage is not the only piece of evidence.