Should Murderers Be Required To Make Restitutions?

Written By: Ishton W. Morton – November 11th, 2016

Experts in the legal arena have defined the law of restitution to be the law of gains-based recovery. It is to be contrasted with the law of compensation, which is the law of loss-based recovery. Obligations to make restitution and obligations to pay compensation are each a type of legal response to events in the real world. When a court orders restitution it orders the defendant to give up his/her gains to the claimant. When a court orders compensation it orders the defendant to pay the claimant for his or her loss.

Hamilton County Prosecutor Joseph T. Deters
Hamilton County Prosecutor Joseph T. Deters

Moreover, according to American Jurisprudence 2d edition observations: The word “restitution” was used in the earlier common law to denote the return or restoration of a specific thing or condition.

Furthermore, in modern legal usage, its meaning has frequently been extended to include not only the restoration or giving back of something to its rightful owner and returning to the status quo but also compensation, reimbursement, indemnification, or reparation for benefits derived from, or for loss or injury caused to, another.In the case of death caused by murder can any compensation, reimbursement, indemnification, or restoration be made? Understandably, we all know the answer to this question.

Seemingly in summary the word “restitution” means the relinquishment of a benefit or the return of money or other property obtained through an improper means to the person from whom the property was taken.

Pursuant to the foregoing presupposition(s) what should be considered death caused by murder?

Ironically, murders are fundamentally acts of robbery, thievery or theft. The commonality of these terms clearly points to the taking of another person’s property without that person’s permission or consent with the intent to permanently deprive the rightful owner of it. In this case it’s the intent to permanently deprive one of one’s lives.

Former University of Cincinnati police officer Raymond (Ray) Tensing
Former University of Cincinnati Police Officer Raymond (Ray) Tensing

There are two (2) ecclesiastical account found in Exodus 20: 6 and 8 of the New King James Version of the Bible. Verse 6 teaches “You shall not (kill) murder” and verse 8 teaches “You shall not steal.” When an act of murder is committed the murderer has taken or stolen from that person that one thing which he and/or she most definitely cannot restore or replaced. Should there be compensation, reimbursement, indemnification, or reparation for benefits? Or should the teachings of the Holman Christian Standard Bible that says, an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, a hand for a hand and a foot for a foot be implemented.

Referencing the murder case of Sam Dubose and data extrapolated from body camera it has become abundantly clear that Ray Tensing committed a murder.

On Friday, November 4th, 2016 Scott Haug testified that Tensing did not act reasonably in his use of force against Sam Dubose. He made a concerted effort to have him exterminated. However, a week later the defense called use of force expert James Scanlon, who testified Tensing shooting of Sam Dubose was justified, reasonable and consistent with police training. Was he saying there is a process within police training that is designed to teach how to kill the people they are paid to protect. Simply put, I totally refused to believe or accept that line of reasoning. 

In my opinion, Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters has it right when he said; “What Tensing did next was not legitimate. It was murder! It was totally contrary to the training he had received. It was totally contrary to rules and regulations of the University of Cincinnati Police Department. It was totally contrary to laws in this country concerning a justified shooting. And it was totally contrary to the oath he had taken as a police officer.”

During opening statements Tuesday in Raymond (Ray) Tensing’s murder trial, Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters said body camera video of the traffic stop shows Tensing reaching for his gun as DuBose restarts the car.

Samuel DuBose
Samuel DuBose

Subsequently, the 12 men and women in the jury were sent to a hotel where they will be sequestered until they reach a decision (or hang) on former University of Cincinnati’s police officer Tensing’s charges for the death of Sam DuBose.

Former University of Cincinnati police officer Ray Tensing faces two (2) charges of one (1) murder and two (2) voluntary manslaughter in the death of the unarmed motorist Sam Dubose in July 19th, 2015.

Ohio murder charges (and aggravated murder charges) are the most serious criminal offenses under which one can be charged.  However, if Ray Tensing is convicted of murder he faces the harshest penalties permissible by law, including the death penalty.

Furthermore, depending on the case, the penalties for murder and/or aggravated murder can include a 15 year to life imprisonment sentence, thirty years in jail, life imprisonment and, finally, death or life imprisonment penalty without the possibility of parole.

However, Ray Tensing can only be convicted for one of the charges. Assistant prosecuting attorney Mark Piepmeier has argued that Tensing is guilty of murder, defined in the indictment as “purposely caus(ing) the death of Sam DuBose.”

Meanwhile in closing argument, Stew Mathews defense attorney for Tensing has argued that Tensing was justified in shooting DuBose because he was in fear for his life. Mathews continued to ask the jury to consider what they will have done in that situation.

Although  Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters  has made an enormously strong case against Raymond (Ray) Tensing for the fatally shooting Samuel DuBose in Cincinnati, Ohio on July 19, 2015, during a traffic stop for a missing front license plate. And although Prosecutors have presented excerpts where Tensing claimed that DuBose had begun to drive off and that he was being dragged because his arm was caught in the car. Despite the facts that Prosecutors have alleged that footage from Tensing’s bodycam showed that he was not dragged and that a grand jury indicted him on charges of murder and voluntary manslaughter. The City of Cincinnati continues to remain particularly tensed in anticipation of the 12 men and women jury’s decision.

At the end of the day Raymond (Ray) Tensing intentionally  and permanently deprived Samuel DuBose of his life. He has stolen from that one thing which he most definitely cannot restored to him. For that however, simple, or however great Tensing should pay!

Author: Ishton W. Morton

Formerly, Ishton W. Morton is an educator and promoter for community advocacy which includes creating programs and services, developing partnerships, and changing public policies, laws, and practices to improve the lifestyle of all people I’m still having an overwhelming desire to provide an Outreach Continuing Education process through this media.