Authorities have released a body camera video that shows the events leading to the fatal shooting of an unarmed black motorist by a University of Cincinnati police officer.
Officer Ray Tensing was indicted for murder Wednesday in the death of 43-year-old Sam Dubose during a traffic stop.
The city manager and Cincinnati police chief both warned before the video’s release that it was “not a good situation,” and the Hamilton County prosecutor said it showed Tensing “should never have been a police officer.”
Video of the incident shows Tensing approach the car July 19 and ask Dubose for his driver’s license, but the driver does not do so.
Dubose insists he has a license and asks the officer to check his name to confirm, but he does not offer any explanation for why he cannot show his license.
Tensing asks about a bottle he can see inside the vehicle, and Dubose hands him a bottle of gin.
The officer asks him to be honest and admit if his license is suspended, but Dubose insists that his license is valid.
Tensing then asks Dubose to unbuckle his seat belt and step out of the car, and the driver starts to do so.
As he turns to unbuckle the seat belt, he apparently takes his foot off the brake, causing the car to move slightly.
The officer then draws his weapon and fires immediately, killing Dubose.
“He didn’t do anything violent to the officer, he wasn’t dragging him, and he intentionally pulled out his gun and shot him in the head,” said Prosecutor Joe Deters.
The officer told 911 dispatchers immediately after the shooting that he fired one shot, fatally striking Dubose in the head, because he was “almost run over” during the traffic stop. Tensing said in the incident report that he was “dragged” by the vehicle.
“He was making excuses for the purposeful killing of another person,” Deters said. “I’m not saying he’s smart, I’m saying that’s what I think he did.”
A warrant was issued for Tensing’s arrest, and the prosecutor said he was treating the officer as a murderer and repeatedly called for the university’s police department to be disbanded.
“He lost his temper because Mr. Dubose wouldn’t get out of his car,” Deters added. “When you see this you won’t believe how quickly he pulls his gun. Maybe a second — it’s incredible.”
Watch the body cam video here: