From The Cincinnati Enquirer The Enquirer filed a lawsuit on Friday against Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters seeking the release of video footage that could play a critical role in getting to what really happened when a University of Cincinnati police officer fatally shot an unarmed man last weekend.
The Associated Press and four local television stations joined The Enquirer in the lawsuit, which calls for the public release of footage purported to show Officer Ray Tensing shooting and killing 43-year-old Samuel Dubose during a traffic stop on Sunday night.
Filed by Enquirer attorney Jack Greiner, the lawsuit says Deters' decision to withhold the video is in violation of state open records laws. Deters is refusing to release the video footage, because he says it would compromise his investigation and "taint" the grand jury process.
"I deeply respect Joe Deters and his office, but The Enquirer sharply disagrees with the prosecutor’s stance," said Rick Green, president and publisher of Enquirer Media. "We feel quite strongly this video should be released without further delay. Ohio law indicates the public has a clear and legal right to immediately inspect this video. Many questions have been raised about what happened that evening, and answers only can come from its release. It’s regrettable we have no other action to take but to petition the court for its immediate release.”
Deters said he expects to complete his investigation Wednesday and present findings to a grand jury by July 31. The video footage "will be released at some point – just not right now," Deters said Thursday.
Two key records released Thursday by UC appear to have critical inconsistencies. The police incident report says Tensing was being "dragged" by Dubose's vehicle and "had to fire his weapon.” Tensing also injured his left arm and was transported to a nearby hospital, according to the report.
However, in the recording of Tensing's call to an emergency dispatcher, the officer mentioned nothing about being dragged and said he was not injured.
Tensing said he was almost run over by Dubose's car, according to both the incident report and dispatch call recording. Dubose was shot in the head.