Jury Selection Nearing Completion In Tensing Retrial

Jun 6, 2017

Nine more potential jurors were excused Tuesday as prosecution and defense attorneys seek to seat a jury in the retrial of Ray Tensing.

The jurors were excused for several reasons including a white man who works for UC and wasn't sure he could be fair; a white woman who shared a petition on Facebook calling that DuBose's death not be in vain, according to the defense; a white woman who is a member of Black Lives Matter; and a white man who said that although he has a strong opinion about what happened he could be professional and put that aside during the trial.

Though the judge had thought jury selection could wrap up Tuesday, the process ran a bit long and is now slated to be complete Wednesday.

Judge Leslie Ghiz also told jurors to be prepared to visit the site of the shooting Wednesday. Opening statements could then begin Thursday

During his questioning, defense attorney Stew Mathews said Ray Tensing will take the stand in his own defense as he did during the first trial.

"In the perfect world you're not to hold it against a defendant if they don't testify. I'm not sure how many jurors actually follow that instruction when a judge gives it. Everybody wants to hear what the defendant has to say, and in this case, you're going to hear what Ray Tensing has to say about what happened on July 19, 2015."

All the people released Tuesday were "excused for cause." That means each side still has four peremptory challenges where a juror can be excused for any reason. If the current jury make-up were to stay in place, which it likely will not, it would include three African-American women, five white women, one African-American man, and three white men.