- Associated Press - Wednesday, July 29, 2015

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - The fatal shooting of an unarmed motorist by a University of Cincinnati police officer during a traffic stop illustrates the need for strong relationships between police departments and the communities they serve, Ohio’s public safety director said Wednesday.

The work being done by a new statewide police standards board can’t prevent tragedies from happening, but it is meant to ensure that when something bad happens, the community and police are working together, said John Born, director of the Ohio Department of Public Safety.

“This is really a long-term investment of making sure that when something does happen the community and law enforcement are communicating and they’re one, not separate,” Born said. “That it’s not one versus the other.”

Born spoke as the Ohio Collaborative Community-Police Advisory Board met for the second time as it writes rules for law enforcement on the proper use of deadly force. It has a September deadline.

The board grew out of a task force on police and community relations convened by Gov. John Kasich earlier this year, following several encounters in Ohio and nationally involving fatal police shootings of blacks. Kasich announced the new police standards board in April at the conclusion of the task force’s work.

The board is drafting rules not just for using deadly force but ensuring that departments train officers on the standards and take action if they’re violated.

It heard a presentation Wednesday by an official with the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies.

The latest shooting happened July 19 when white University of Cincinnati police officer Ray Tensing shot and killed black motorist Samuel DuBose after stopping him for a missing front license plate. Authorities haven’t indicated whether race was a part of the investigation.

Tensing was indicted Wednesday on a murder charge. Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters called the shooting senseless, saying it never should have happened.


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