John Minchillo/AP
July 30, 2015 11:15 AM

Peaceful protests broke out in Cincinnati after a white police officer was indicted for murder in the fatal shooting of a black driver during a traffic stop earlier this month.

Ray Tensing, a University of Cincinnati police officer, turned himself in to authorities on Wednesday for killing 43-year-old Samuel DuBose, whom he pulled over because he was missing his front license plate.

The incident was captured in a graphic body-camera video, which shows Tensing approaching DuBose. The two appear to talk and DuBose seems to hand Tensing a bottle of alcohol.

Sam Dubose

The two struggle as Tensing tries to pull open DuBose’s door, but then Tensing rolls away from the car and pulls his gun on DuBose, shooting him fatally in the head as the man tries to drive away.

On Wednesday afternoon, Mark O’Mara, the DuBose family attorney, urged against any violent protests following the indictment.

“Sam was a peaceful person,” O’Mara said. “We do not want any violence, any anger to come out in a way that denigrates who he was and who he wanted to be remembered as.”

That evening, hundreds gathered for a rally in front of the Hamilton County courthouse, including several of DuBose’s family members, The Washington Post reports. DuBose is a father of 10.

Ray Tensing, pictured in his uniform (left) and his mugshot (right)
Greenhills Police Department/Reuters/Landov; Hamilton County Sheriff's Office/Reuters/Landov

“They shot him in the head,” DuBose’s 9-year-old son, also named Samuel, shouted to the crowd assembled through a megaphone. “It was murder and the officer thought he would get away with it.”

Added DuBose’s sister, Kim Thomas: “I want the officer to spend the rest of his life in jail.”

Earlier in the day, Hamilton County Prosecutor Joseph Deters criticized Tensing’s actions.

“This is the most asinine act I’ve ever seen a police officer make,” he said in a news conference Wednesday. “He should have never been a police officer.”

Deters went on to call the shooting “totally unwarranted.”

“I’m treating him like a murderer,” he said. “He purposefully killed him.”

Tensing pleaded not guilty to the charges against him on Thursday morning.

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