On July 5th, 2011, a 37-year-old schizophrenic homeless man from Fullerton, California, named Kelly Thomas was beaten to within an inch of his life by several Fullerton Police Department officers.
He passed away five days later, shortly after being taken off life support.
The Orange County Coroner determined that injuries he sustained during the beating, as well as the "mechanical chest compression" which took place during the altercation, were directly responsible for Thomas's demise.
Out of the six officers involved in the incident, only two were charged with crimes: Officer Manuel Ramos (second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter), and Corporal Jay Cicinelli (involuntary manslaughter and excessive force).
Despite allegations that Thomas was uncooperative and combative, surveillance footage shown for the first time at yesterday's preliminary hearing proves these claims are grossly inaccurate (beating starts at 15:20).
Further, paramedics who arrived on the scene stopped first to treat minor scratches and bruises sustained by the officers before turning their attention to an unconscious Thomas who was bleeding — literally — to death on the ground.
According to the testimony of Fullerton Fire Department paramedic Ron Stancyk, this was at the request of the officers.
The hearing to determine if sufficient evidence exists for a trial continues today.
I used to live in Orange County, CA and this is fairly typical of a lot of the mindset there. They'd like nothing more than to sweep this whole thing under the rug. Look no further than the O.C. Register, which refuses to even acknowledge that the cops killed Thomas. Truly frightening, but not unusual.
I grew up in Fullerton, and I happen to be there now. I used to see Kelly Thomas around when he was on his medication or before the downward spiral. I was a nice guy. I also saw him when he was at bottom. It was really sad.
The part of the story that does not get told is that in order for him to get help. He had to be homeless. His parents were forced to kick him out of the house as this was the only way that he would qualify for help in Orange County. Once he was out on the streets, he fell through the cracks. California has got to change the way it handles the mentally ill. You cannot have people spiral out of control in order to get help, nor can you cut off help once they have stabilized. It is about like saying that ones blood sugar is normal so we are cutting of your insulin.
I want ALL 6 of those rogue animals (nominal "Fullerton police officers") to serve HARD TIME in a California super max prison.
Get this -- the California police union is lining up behind these animals because they say through their high-powered $$$$$ attorney that unless officers are shielded from prosecution, no one will sign up "to serve and protect" if they face criminal prosecution in the performance of their duties.
It's beyond disgusting what Fullerton has done to shield and protect these officers.
Here's a website that tells it like it is in Fullerton CA.
**ALL SIX** OFFICERS SHOULD BE PROSECUTED; not just the TWO
that's horrifying. He's screaming out, sounding like he's saying 'DAD! DAD! HELP ME!' and they keep beating him. Aren't there restraints they could use -- like cuffs -- to keep him under control?
I can't even deal. I am in tears and I didn't even watch the video. What can be done about this? Especially for people who don't live in CA? Any ideas?
Send an e-mail to the state governor, the mayor of Fullerton, and the OC REGISTER newspaper.
Tell all that you will not set foot in or spend a dime in California if this is how the police are allowed to behave.
Money talks .. bullshit walks.
These cops murdered a citizen in full public view and they are enlisting a high-powered slimy attorney, the police officers' union, and the city to get them off.
What they did is wrong .. God is watching .. and they should ALL be punished for cold-blooded murder.
[quote]Typical of the kind of people we get as police nowadays.
I agree. You can't trust anyone in law enforcement.
One of the things that gets me is that someone apparently gave false information to the police. Apparently, someone saw Kelly in the parking lot and wanted him removed; so, this person made a false report to the police department that Kelly was breaking car windows. If this is true, the person who made the call should be charged as well.
There was a similar case in Pasadena recently, r16 -- an illegal alien had his backpack taken and called the police for help. Knowing they wouldn't come unless he made the situation look dire, he told the 911 operator that a black guy had robbed him at gunpoint.
It's still not clear if they nabbed the right black guy for the theft, but the cops went into the situation thinking the black guy had a gun, and blasted him just as he turned around.
He didn't have a gun.
The DA is still fretting over whether the charge the illegal alien with anything.
Unfortunately, I sort of understand the problem, and it comes back to the police. A friend owned a restaurant in NYC. The cook was gay bashed as he left the restaurant. It took the police forever to arrive. They were told that the only way to get the police there ASAP was to say that a child was in danger. So, of course, this just encouraged people to lie and say a child is in danger when one isn't.
I wouldn't be surprised if Vladimir Putin applauds this
Why did the parents have to kick him out to get assistance? Would he not qualify for state medical assistance? I am in tears over this. My sister's child is schizophrenic. She is only 12, and a wonderful, beautiful bright child. To think that she could someday be on the streets, raped, abused, killed...it makes me sick to my stomach. What kind of world do we live in?
I can't watch the tape, but from other posters have said it sounds like he was calling for his father? That just breaks my heart.
R20, I will have to ask a friend who is involved with OC mental health. I assume, though, that he had no health insurance and as long as he lived with his parents, they were financially responsible. Just a guess, but I will try to find out the answer.
[quote]The hearing to determine if sufficient evidence exists for a trial continues today.
A video of the beating isn't sufficient? Fucked up.
R22 -- the media also reported he was in the street because he couldn't get along with his step-mom, and didn't seem to have any contact with his mother.
R23, I think all felony charges brought in CA have to go through the prelim process...Not many cases get dismissed at the preliminary hearing, they always go forward.
yes r21, it distinctly sounds like he's calling out for his dad. it is heartbreaking and chilling, you hear those screams, and you see the batons flying. the tenor of his voice is like you hear when an animal is kicked/abused. complete fear and vulnerability.
r9, you said you knew him, was this guy threatening? It's hard to tell from the video what he was doing that warranted an arrest (other than being a wiseass, which is hardly threatening to armed cops). I can't understand why they would go after him so vociferously.
The cops will get away with this murder like they always do.
LA times blog post at link:
"A short time later, Ramos can be seen hitting Thomas with his baton and heard saying, "get on the ground."
Thomas repeatedly apologizes to Ramos and a second officer. "I am sorry, dude. I can't breathe, dude," Thomas says.
One of the officers can be seen kneeing the 37-year-old homeless man. "I cannot breathe, man," Thomas says on the video as Ramos tells him to relax.
Some of the struggle is obscured by a tree, but a Taser can be heard, apparently stunning Thomas, whose legs appear to wiggle. Thomas' voice gets lower and lower as the encounter continues.
"Dad, they're killing me," he says.
R9, I never saw him be threatening. when he was "normal", he was the sort of guy who acknowledged you with a bit of a smile if you happened to make eye contact. I would come into a local off house and I never knew him to cause a problem.
As a street person, he was a bit crackers but he was never threatening in my presence. I have lived for 30 years in NYC; so, street people really do not scare me.
[quote]I would come into a local off house and I never knew him to cause a problem.
Argh! Who is coming off cracker now! "He would come into the coffee house and I never knew him to cause a problem."
Why was there a rabbi in the courtroom? He was in a seat in front and to the side of the defendants.
I think the issue about his father kicking him out of the house had to do with his SSI benefits. I believe that in order for an adult to receive them, s/he has to be living away from the family home. My next door neighbor has a 10 year old with some serious disabilities (pervasive developmental disorder, seizure disorder and autism) and she says that he will not qualify as an adult if he lives in the family home. The family anticipates moving into a duplex type property or a property with a guest home with a separate address in order to be able to keep an eye on him.
Here is a story about Fullerton Officer Manny Ramos' high octane attorney, John Barnett.
I hope this guy loses in court and loses bad.
This is a god damned outrage and should be getting more attention.
I hope this Ramos asshole goes to jail for life.
[quote]Barnett—who helped LAPD officer Theodore Briseno win an acquittal in the infamous Rodney King beating that sparked the 1992 LA riots.
Why am I not surprised?
I think we need to bring back the old name for Police, you know, from the 1960' and 1970's. They're pigs.
But someone once told me, most people don't become police because they are humanitarians.
And it's true. They're bullies.
I will not watch the video for fear I will be unable to sleep. That and the likely mental scarring ....
Jesus, that was awful. Watching that video made me sick to my stomach. The police are supposed to protect us. Who's going to protect us from the police?
I never watch these kinds of videos. I think about them for weeks.
If I had the physical strength, I'd love to beat down both of those goons, mano a mano.
The fat one with the cheesy mustache deposed that he was in the "fight of his life."
Six other officers were helping you, your victim was handcuffed, sat on, and Tased?! You outweighed him by over 100 lbs., and you were in the "fight of your life?!"
Prison will not go well for you, my friend, should you get what you so richly deserve. I pray the OC jury does what is right.
Same goes for Taser Boy. Get this -- he was drawing full salary from LAPD in addition to his Fullerton salary -- over $100K/year. It seems he was on LTD, sent home because his left eye was shot out in the line of duty, and then Fullerton PD hired him as a favor, chief- to-chief.
Here's the big tough cop showing his boo-boo the night Kelly Thomas was beaten -- for evidence that he was was in a terrific fight.
This reminds me of George Zimmerman's 'fight of his life' where he sustained a cut on his head (if that). Fucking liars.
[quote]Same goes for Taser Boy. Get this -- he was drawing full salary from LAPD in addition to his Fullerton salary -- over $100K/year. It seems he was on LTD, sent home because his left eye was shot out in the line of duty, and then Fullerton PD hired him as a favor, chief- to-chief.
I'm sorry, but the citizens of Fullerton are entitled to a one-eyed cop? What use is s/he? Oh, wait, he managed to land the shocks on the prone while on LTD status? I'm a CA taxpayer and I'd like the money returned, please.
LAPD said he wasn't fit to serve with one eye so they gave him LTD pay and sent him home.
He gets himself hired by the chief of the Fullerton PD as a favor to the chief of the LAPD.
He was making more than $100K off the taxpayers of Los Angeles and Orange counties and this is what they got for the money: excessive force against and involuntary manslaughter of a citizen.
And some jack-ass attorney is going to try to sway a GOP-leaning Orange County jury to let these creeps go.
People in California, especially Southern California, need to let their elected officials know that they will not accept for a slap on the wrist for these animals if found guilty and that ALL SIX should be on trial.
NONE OF THEM SHOULD BE ALLOWED TO WEAR A BADGE EVER AGAIN -- UNFIT FOR DUTY
After this case and the serial killings of several homeless people in OC, the people there are tiring of the mistreatment of street people.
I've been following this through Ron Paul's supporters.
Fortunately, since it looks like he's going to win the presidency, shit like this will be punished and cops will learn to respect our civil rights again.
Today's hearing determined there was sufficient evidence for a trial
[quote]since it looks like he's going to win the presidency,
From the report linked below about this week's preliminary hearing:
It is the first time in Orange County history that a police officer has been ordered to stand trial on a murder charge for actions that occurred while on duty and in uniform, the Orange County Register reported.
John Barnett, Ramos' attorney, said he would seek another court's review of Schwarm's ruling and did not expect his client would end up facing a jury trial.
"We're disappointed that they were held to answer but we will seek review in an appropriate manner," he told reporters after the ruling. "He believes, and he is innocent."
[quote]It is the first time in Orange County history that a police officer has been ordered to stand trial on a murder charge for actions that occurred while on duty and in uniform, the Orange County Register reported.
YES YES YES YES!!! Sick, murdering fuckers.
Link to follow local news about this:
If he is convicted of anything it will shock me.
As Ron Paul's supporters have been saying for years, cops are just thugs with badges, and their "brothers" will defend any action, no matter how egregious.
Cops have more respect for the Constitution than congress, and that's saying a lot.
We would [italic]never[/italic] have known any of these things were it not for grace bestowed on us by Ron Paul's supporters. Praise be!!!
The photo of the homeless guy in the hospital is horrifying. The fat ass cop is complaining about his bruise after killing a guy? OMFG!
They truly look like mean, moronic thugs. Read up on Pat McKinley, the former police chief and Councilman who hired them. Fullerton's PD has been rife with corruption, thuggery and impunity for years.
Fullerton police fatally shoot gunman after chase
May 11, 2012 | 5:15 am
Fullerton police shot and killed a man late Thursday who allegedly shot at them after a short chase in a car and then on foot, police said.
The deceased man's name was not immediately available. A passenger in the car was treated for minor injuries, police said. No officers were hurt in the incident.
Officers tried to pull over the car near Euclid Street and Wilshire Avenue for a minor violation about 11:15 p.m. Thursday.
The car sped off, ignoring the patrol car’s lights and sirens, police said. After a little more than a mile, the driver attempted a turn at Gilbert Street and Malvern Avenue and lost control of his car. The car crashed through a fence and into a drainage canal some 20 feet below, police said.
One occupant of the vehicle ran off and hid in a drainage tunnel, police said. As officers searched for him, he reappeared, armed with a gun and allegedly fired at the officers. They returned gunfire, striking him.
Paramedics tried to revive him, but he died at the scene, police said. A gun was recovered at the scene.
As is usual with officer-involved shootings, the case was referred to the Orange County district attorney’s office, which will investigate.
The shooting comes after two Fullerton police officers were ordered earlier this week to stand trial for murder in the beating death of Kelly Thomas, a transient, in July.
this is the footage that was released; Dear God...what do the cameras NOT catch?
[quote]cops are just thugs with badges, and their "brothers" will defend any action, no matter how egregious.
Even killing a mentally ill person? I know police brutality is nothing new, but i can't recall a case quite this bad. With video evidence.
These were NOT cops, they were GOONS! The poor guy was begging for his life. All they had to do was handcuff him, and that's it! No, they had to beat him up to a bloody pulp.
We do have some great cops, but these were BAD cops of the evil kind. The evil fatass cop was probably bored, and decided to beat up the poor guy for kicks.
I don't recall.
Jeepers, what is happening to my home town? It used to be that the most excitement in Fullerton was the ostrich races down Harbor.
Who Watches The Watchmen? If you record them committing a crime, they can steal your property and throw you in jail. Thugs.
The ACLU has sued the District of Columbia and two police officers for allegedly seizing the cellphone of a man who photographed a police officer allegedly mistreating a citizen, and for then stealing his memory card.
The suit, filed in federal court (.pdf) in Washington, D.C., alleges that the police officer violated Earl Staley, Jr.’s First Amendment and Fourth Amendment rights by improperly searching and seizing his property while he was exercising his right to photograph the police performing their duty.
The incident occurred July 20 when Staley, on his way to a bus stop with a friend, pulled out his phone to record police after he saw an officer hit a man on a motorbike. Two police officers then allegedly punched the man on the ground as he bled.
Staley pulled out his phone to take photos when police also allegedly began “chest bumping” bystanders who would not leave the scene.
Officer James O’Bannon seized Staley’s smartphone from his hand when he saw Staley take a photo of another officer and told Staley that he had broken the law in photographing the officer, according to the complaint. O’Bannon told Staley he was seizing the phone as evidence and threatened to arrest Staley if he didn’t leave the scene.
When Staley was later given back his phone by police, his memory card was missing. The police have still not returned the card, which Staley says contained several years’ worth of personal data, including family photos, passwords, financial account data and music files.
“That memory card had a lot of my life on it,” Staley said in a statement. “I can never replace those photos of my daughter’s first years. The police had no right to steal it. They’re supposed to enforce the law, not break it.”
The incident occurred a day after the D.C.’s Metropolitan Police Department issued a General Order informing officers that the public has a First Amendment right to photograph or record police officers performing their duties in public. That’s also the legal opinion of the U.S. Justice Department.
Per the D.C. order, police cannot “[i]n any way threaten, intimidate or otherwise discourage an individual from recording members’ enforcement activities,” and prohibits officers from seizing cameras unless an “official with supervisory authority” is present at the scene.
“Officers must learn that people have a right to photograph them in public places, and that trying to cover up police misconduct is worse than the initial misconduct,” said Arthur B. Spitzer, Legal Director of the ACLU’s D.C. chapter, said in a statement. “The officer’s actions here will have consequences.”
R49 = one of the GOP insiders who "creatively counted" the primary ballots
If only, R65.
The GOP knew Paul was a bigger threat to them than Obama.
Imagine a prez that pulled ALL the troops from around the world, slashed the defense budget by 80%, stopped the war on drugs, eliminated the TSA, IRS, DHS, FDA, and returned most of the powers back to the states.
It would have bankrupted the military industrial powers that exist purely on tax dollars. It would have crippled the big pharmaceutical companies that require DC to survive.
But, it would have cut taxes for the poor, made health care better, spurred the creation of new jobs, and unleashed a system of innovation unlike any we've seen.
Fucking pigs. This makes me so angry I'm trembling. I can't believe this kind of shit is acceptable and we feel we have a right to look down on other countries.
It's because we've allowed the morons in DC to control out country.
Devolve power back to the county level, make them fight for residents, and this will stop. Now cops have unlimited power. The supreme court has given them carte blanche.