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Ear to the Ground

UPDATED: Two of Six Officers Charged in Kelly Thomas Death

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Posted on Sep 21, 2011
AP / Nick Ut

Garo Mardirossian, the attorney for the family of Kelly Thomas, shows stun gun projectiles during a news conference on Sept. 7 in Los Angeles.

Two of six Fullerton, Calif., police officers involved in the brutal public beating that resulted in the death of 37-year-old Kelly Thomas, a homeless schizophrenic man, have been charged in connection with the case.

Officer Manuel Ramos, who allegedly donned a pair of latex gloves before the beating and told Thomas, “These fists are ready to [F] you up,” was charged with second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter. Officer Jay Cicinelli was charged with involuntary manslaughter and excessive use of force after he allegedly tasered Thomas four times, kneed him in the head twice and hit him with the taser eight times, Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas said Wednesday.

Cicinelli pleaded not guilty Wednesday afternoon and was released on $25,000 bail. Ramos, who faces more serious charges, had his arraignment continued to Monday, Sept. 26.—BF

Los Angeles Times:

Orange County Dist. Atty. Tony Rackauckas said the “menacing” actions of a Fullerton police officer in the fatal beating of a homeless man strayed so far from acceptable law enforcement practices that he was left with no choice but to charge the policeman with murder, and a second officer with involuntarily manslaughter.

Rackauckas, using blunt street language to describe the events he said led to Kelly Thomas’ death, said Fullerton Officer Manuel Ramos turned a potential routine confrontation with a homeless man into a crime scene.

“We simply cannot accept” the actions of the police officer, Rackauckas said. He said Ramos’ actions were “reckless” and created the situation that led to Thomas’ death.

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By Malik King,RN, December 27, 2011 at 1:38 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

My condolences to the Thomas family. I am truly sorry for
your lost, for I was almost murdered in the same fashion, in
the same Orange County California; just four months prior.

On March 9, 2011 several Police brutally ordered a K-9 to
attack an unarmed, California Registered (RN). The California
Highway Patrol (CHP) in Orange County then attempted to
cover up the incident.

Malik King, a reportedly Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) since
nineteen and RN since twenty three, is said to have initially
attempted to steal a car. Later, it was found he was the owner
of that Mercedes. What ensued next on the part of several
officers goes well beyond the bounds of simply trying to
subdue their suspect.

The several police officers ordered a police K-9 to attack him
while he was still fastened in his seat-belt; tasered multiple
times while the K-9 attacked for over one minute and thirty
seconds, then hand cuffed, slammed to the concrete, hog
tied, beat and kicked in the head until unconscious. He was
then taken to jail, accused of multiple felonies, and had to pay
$50,000 for bail.

Despite witnesses and the clear brutality of the beating,
kicking, tasering, and ordered K-9 attack, California Highway
Patrol allowed several officers to remain active and attempted
a cover-up.
Violations of federal law occur when it can be shown that the
force used was willfully “unreasonable” or “excessive”. By
signing this petition you agree that “unreasonable” or
“excessive force” was used on Malik A. King on March 9, 2011
in Orange County, California.

The beating of Mr. King is sickening and disturbing. The
police involved in the beating and cover up must be brought
to justice. Tell Orange County District Attorney Tony
Rackauckas to thoroughly investigate and prosecute the
officers involved in the brutality of Malik A. King,LVN,RN.

Malik King,LVN,RN

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Egomet Bonmot's avatar

By Egomet Bonmot, September 22, 2011 at 6:49 pm Link to this comment

Here’s a little-known fact the DA and Fullerton cops are trying to bury:  The DA’s word-for-word account of the talk leading up to the murder comes not from bystanders but from the cops themselves, who recorded the murder on their iPhones and thought they could get away with just deleting it (oops, buffer memory).

They wanted a souvenir.

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By berniem, September 22, 2011 at 2:18 pm Link to this comment

Our current police state’s sole concern is to protect and serve wealth, property, and power!

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By murmur55, September 22, 2011 at 8:57 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Restraint asphyxia is a common form of death for
those in police custody and it is almost always
preventable, especially in low level interactions
such as traffic stops and containment of
intoxicated persons. See Walter Haake, David
Woodman, Kenneth Howe, Allen Kephart and
others for examples. It is time for a constitutional
challenge on this lethal form of restraint.

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By kim, September 22, 2011 at 7:33 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I think we ALL should STOP paying all of these
agencies that are supposed to protect us, as NONE of
them do. It is unbelievable what these arrogant slime
balls have done! It sickens me to no end how ass
backwards our country is!

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Gabriel's avatar

By Gabriel, September 22, 2011 at 4:43 am Link to this comment

Very good , we are starting to realize Murder is Murder doesn’t matter who commits it. No ifs or buts about it.

Leadership should be held to the same standard as rest of population. As a matter of fact a Higher standard ... as an example to everyone.

What we have Today is a Super Mafia running the show.

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Samson's avatar

By Samson, September 22, 2011 at 12:17 am Link to this comment

They beat a man to death.  They put on gloves before
hand, knowing that they are about to commit a crime.
They make statements to the victim in advance of the
harm they are going to do to him, but there’s no
charge of 1st degree pre-medidated murder.

There are no charges of felony murder either.  For a
poor man caught by the police, the rule is that if
anyone dies while a crime is being committed, then
its 1st degree murder.  Is it not a crime for police
officers to beat a citizen severely?  Didn’t someone
die while in the commision of this crime?  So, why
isn’t every officer involved in this facing much more
serious charges of felony murder?

Its apparently good to be a cop.  You can get away
with murder.

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Samson's avatar

By Samson, September 22, 2011 at 12:14 am Link to this comment

On the night they killed Troy Davis, take careful
note that none of these people will die for this.

I’m opposed to the idea of a state killing its
people, so I suppose that this is a good thing.  But
its always useful to take note of the deep
inequalities of how ‘justice’ is meeting out in this

The Troy Davis’ of this nation get loaded onto the
execution railroad, and the train proves impossible
to stop.  If this case is like most other police
officers charged with crimes, they’ll likely get off.

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By grokker, September 21, 2011 at 7:33 pm Link to this comment

From the pictures of this poor man taken post beating, it’s obvious to me that more than 2 cops were in on this crime. The FBI is supposedly investigating the Fullerton Police since this seems to be a systemic problem. There is no penalty brutal enough to bring down on these cowardly pigs.

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Gabriel's avatar

By Gabriel, September 21, 2011 at 4:00 pm Link to this comment

It’s about time!
We pay cop’s wages to protect us and they have no right to attack us instead, as paid “policy” officers of corporations.

Any cop not working for us as a Peace Officer should be charged for Treason and treated as such.

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