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Jury deadlocks in Cincinnati cop trial

Oct. 31, 2001 at 1:37 PM

CINCINNATI, Oct. 31 (UPI) -- Prosecutors on Wednesday said they want to retry a white police officer on involuntary manslaughter charges in the death of a black suspect.

The jury in the trial of Office Robert Jorg, 30, deadlocked on the felony charge Tuesday after acquitting him of a misdemeanor assault charge.

Jorg is the first Cincinnati police officer ever charged with a felony while on duty in the death of a suspect. Jorg allegedly killed Roger Owensby Jr., 29, last Nov. 7 after putting him in a chokehold during a scuffle.

Jurors began their deliberations Monday and continued all day Tuesday before informing Judge Thomas Nurre they were unable to reach a verdict.

"We want to do what's right for the Owensby family," Prosecutor Michael Allen said. "We want to do what's right for everybody in this case.

Jorg's partner, Patrick Caton, is being tried on the assault charge in municipal court.

Jorg has been suspended without pay since January.

Jorg and Caton had stopped Owensby to question him about drug trafficking in a gas station parking lot. Owensby tried to run and the officers wrestled him to the ground. The coroner ruled Owensby was either killed by a chokehold or by the weight of the officers who piled atop the suspect.

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