Ray Tensing, the University of Cincinnati campus officer who fatally shot Sam Dubose during a traffic stop over a missing front license plate, has pleaded not guilty to murder and involuntary manslaughter charges, the Associated Press reports.
During an arraignment on Thursday, Tensing’s bond was set at $1 million. Prosecutors have claimed that the officer “purposely killed” the 43-year-old Dubose during the stop, dismissing Tensing’s claim that he feared for his life and that he was being dragged by Dubose’s vehicle.
According to AP, Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters blasted Tensing, saying that he “should never have been a police officer” and describing the stop as “chicken crap.”
“It was so unnecessary,” Deters said.
“This officer was wrong,” Cincinnati Police Chief Jeffrey Blackwell said, according to AP, insisting that officers “have to be held accountable.”
Tensing, who was fired soon after his indictment on Wednesday, could face up to life in prison if convicted. His attorney, Stewart Mathews, said he was surprised that his client had been indicted on murder, saying that Tensing had no intention of killing Dubose. Tensing, Mathews claimed, “feared for his life.”
"With the political climate in this country with white police officers shooting black individuals, I think they need somebody to make an example of," Mathews said, according to AP.
As AP notes, Tensing had been working for the University of Cincinnati for more than a year but started doing police work in a Cincinnati suburb in 2011. He has a University of Cincinnati degree in criminal justice.
Read more at WABC-TV.