Authorities today have released footage from a police body camera that shows the sequence of events that led to the fatal shooting of yet another unarmed black man, and the new video appears to call into question the story given originally by the officer.
Shoot First, Ask Questions Later
The video shows Officer Tensing as he approaches the victim, Sam Dubose’s, car on July 19. He asks Dubose for his driver’s license, but Dubose doesn’t readily present it. He insists he has a license and asks the officer to check his name to confirm that he has one.
He doesn’t, however, offer a reason for why he can’t show his license.
Tensing asks about a particular bottle in the vehicle, and that’s when Dubose hands him a bottle of gin.
When Tensing asks Dubose to be honest and admit if his license is suspended, Dubose nonetheless claims that it’s valid.
Right-wingers take note: What happened next is exactly what you keep insisting people should do to avoid getting shot by the police.
Tensing asks Dubose to take off his seat belt and step out of he car. When Dubose moves to comply, and unbuckles his seat belt, he may have taken his foot off the break, causing the car to move forward.
That’s when Tensing snaps the gun out and kills him.
“Not A Good Situation”
The city manager and Cincinnati mayor both warned, before the release of the video, that it was “not a good situation,” and the Hamilton County prosecutor commented that Tensing “should never have been a police officer.”
Prosecutor Joe Deters said of Dubose that 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.”
During the 911 call to dispatchers, Tensing said that he’d fired the shot that killed Dubose because he was “almost run over” during the traffic stop. Tensing said in the incident report that he was “dragged” by the vehicle.
Deters wasn’t convinced.
“He was making excuses for the purposeful killing of another person. I’m not saying he’s smart, I’m saying that’s what I think he did.”
There was a warrant issued for Tensing’s arrest and the prosecutor said that they were treating the officer as murderer. Deters also called for the disbandment of the university police force.
“He lost his temper because Mr. Dubose wouldn’t get out of his car,” Deters said. “When you see this you won’t believe how quickly he pulls his gun. Maybe a second — it’s incredible.”
Tensing was indicted for murder on Wednesday.
Watch the footage below:[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GRQXmMdIdg0&w=560&h=315]
Feature image via YouTube screen capture