Local attorneys surprised by change of venue request in Tensing retrial

Local attorney and head of the Black Lawyers Association of Cincinnati, Donyetta Bailey, surprised by change of venue request in Tensing retrial (WKRC)

CINCINNATI (WKRC) - Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters announced plans to retry Ray Tensing on murder and voluntary manslaughter charges on Nov. 22. He said he'd also try to get the trial moved to another part of Ohio. Attorney and analyst Hal Arenstein says that would be very unusual.

Arenstein says it's usually the defense which requests a change in venue. This time, Tensing's attorneys are fighting such a move, especially since they avoided a conviction when the jury came back hung on Nov. 12.

The opportunity for Deters to speak to some of the jury members and get their insight was huge, said Arenstein. "He has doubled down. He is convinced that what he has charged Tensing with is the appropriate charge. I would say, in many respects, he has put his reputation on the line by doing so. And he hasn't done that without some significant consideration. I think he's done that based on his opportunity to the jurors."

The president of the Black Lawyers Association of Cincinnati also found Deters' decision to be unusual. "It's highly unusual for the prosecutor to be the one to request the change of venue, that's usually done by defense counsel," said Donyetta Bailey. "It's also highly unusual for defense counsel to be in opposition to a motion to change venue when this case is getting the attention in Cincinnati that it's getting and everywhere."

The attorneys are planning to meet Judge Megan Shanahan on Monday, Nov. 28, to discuss the retrial and possible move.

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