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Additional Viewing Space Available For Tensing Trial

Tana Weingartner

Hamilton County is opening Courtroom B in the Justice Center as a public viewing site for the upcoming trial of former UC police officer Ray Tensing.

Major Charmaine McGuffey with the Sheriff's Department says seating for the public is limited in the main trial courtroom.

"Probably, I would say, 20 spectators/general public will have room for. That's why we have offered up the viewing room here at the Hamilton County Justice Center," says McGuffey.

Sheriff Jim Neil says the number of seats available will depend on security staffing.

"Based on the security that I have available, it can fluctuate between 60 maybe up to 100," he says.

Local TV will be live-streaming the trial. The Sheriff's Department is encouraging people to watch at home or gather in congregations.

McGuffey says protestors will be allowed outside the courthouse but not inside.

"We support the right for peaceful protests, for lawful gatherings of people who want to have their voices heard," she says. "We cannot interrupt court proceedings. I'd like to make sure everyone's aware of that. There are lots of other court proceedings that are going on in the courthouse that day."

McGuffey says the Sheriff's Department regularly meets with community and faith leaders and has discussed the trial with them. However, the department has not met with Cincinnati Black Lives Matter but "that's not off the table."