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Two more judges remove themselves from Ray Tensing retrial

By Andrew V. Pestano
Ray Tensing, a former University of Cincinnati police officer, is facing a retrial on murder charges for killing 43-year-old Sam DuBose. Two judges who were appointed to the case removed themselves on Tuesday and a new judge was appointed -- the fourth judge to handle the case. Photo courtesy Hamilton County Justice Center
Ray Tensing, a former University of Cincinnati police officer, is facing a retrial on murder charges for killing 43-year-old Sam DuBose. Two judges who were appointed to the case removed themselves on Tuesday and a new judge was appointed -- the fourth judge to handle the case. Photo courtesy Hamilton County Justice Center

CINCINNATI, Nov. 29 (UPI) -- A Hamilton County, Ohio, official said two more judges disqualified themselves from the murder trial of former Cincinnati police Officer Ray Tensing on Tuesday.

A mistrial was declared on Nov. 12 in Tensing's trial over the death of 43-year-old Sam DuBose after jurors could not agree on a verdict. Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters announced a retrial last Tuesday.

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Early Tuesday, Judge Tom Heekin, who was appointed on Monday, removed himself due to a conflict of interest because he served as guardian ad litem for one of DuBose's children during the probate process.

Hamilton County Judge Beth A. Myers then briefly obtained the case on Tuesday, but she filed disqualification papers almost immediately.

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Heekin on Monday said that he has a connection to a son of the victim in the case, having represented him in an unrelated civil case against the University of Cincinnati.

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Heekin replaced the first judge, Megan Shanahan, who removed herself from the retrial -- citing a desire to give the case a "blank slate."

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Dan Blanton, the Hamilton County courthouse's assignment commissioner, said Hamilton County Common Pleas Court Judge Leslie Ghiz, a former Cincinnati city council member, is now assigned to the case.

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Tensing, a former University of Cincinnati officer, shot and killed DuBose in July 2015 during a traffic stop. After being unable to produce a driver's license, DuBose was shot by Tensing when he attempted to drive away. The entire incident was captured on Tensing's body camera.

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