ASU professor in court over controversial arrest

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by Jayson Chesler

Video report by Tanya Mendis

Posted on July 7, 2014 at 4:37 PM

PHOENIX -- 50 people crowded the hallways of Maricopa County Superior Court on Thursday to lend their support in the case of Dr. Ersula Ore, the ASU professor whose controversial arrest video has made its way across the nation.

Ore's case continued as her lawyer presented more evidence to the county attorney, including more of the dash-cam video that the case has become known for. The video shows the escalation of Ore being approached for jaywalking to a scene in the streets, with Ore and a police officer in a struggle.

Among Ore's supporters at the case were personal friends, one of whom said that Ore is not a violent person and that the situation left him in disbelief.

Alane Roby, Ore's attorney, said that the issue in the case is one of respect. While potential racial profiling is being investigated by the FBI, Roby said the case applies to everyone.

"This is not a race issue, this is not a gender issue, this is not a sexual orientation issue," Roby said. "This is a citizen issue."

The ASU police officer involved in the case, Stewart Ferrin, is now on administrative leave, although the university has issued statements supporting him. Ore is accused of kicking Ferrin, but Roby said it was an act of self-defense.

"All she knew was a hand was going toward her backside by a man that had already pushed himself against her," Roby said. "So her one reaction was just to shove him off."

While ASU's preliminary investigation found that Ferrin did not racially profile Ore or use excessive force, the FBI is now investigating and will give its opinion. Ore's attorney said she welcomes the FBI's involvement.

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