Kelly Thomas Verdict: A travesty that must be addressed by the DOJ

Kelly Thomas VerdictLIZA on 3ChicsPolitico wrote: What is it going to take for this country to acknowledge its cop problem and demand reforms? It’s not just a few bad cops, it is a systemic problem based on the myths that almost all cops are basically good, they are just doing their jobs, sometimes things get rough because being a cop is a dirty job, and so forth. In fact, these myths just simply allow cops to kill and maim with impunity. These myths are so ingrained that juries are apparently immune to videos and irrefutable facts.

SG2: It’s painful looking at Kelly Thomas’ photo. I can hardly take it. Too brutal. The face looks as if animals attacked him but no, this was done by the hands of those sworn to serve and protect. This unjust verdict cannot stand. It’s outrageous injustice!

Two former officers found not guilty in death of Kelly Thomas

About SouthernGirl2

A Native Texan who adores baby kittens, loves horses, rodeos, pomegranates, & collect Eagles. Enjoys politics, games shows, & dancing to all types of music. Loves discussing and learning about different cultures. A Phi Theta Kappa lifetime member with a passion for Social & Civil Justice.
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42 Responses to Kelly Thomas Verdict: A travesty that must be addressed by the DOJ

  1. rikyrah says:

    they murdered that man in cold blood. they need to be under the jail.

    • Yahtc says:

      Kelly Thomas pleaded for his life.

      Okay sir
      I’m SORRY dude
      I’m SORRY
      I’m SORRY
      Okay Okay Okay Okay
      Okay I’m SORRY
      I’m SORRY dude
      I’m SORRY dude
      I’m SORRY I’m SORRY
      Okay Okay
      Ow I’m SORRY
      Okay I can’t breathe
      Okay I can’t breathe
      Please I can’t breathe
      Okay ooaagh
      Ow I can’t breathe
      Okay please
      aoah! aaaaooo
      I can’t dude
      I’m sorry aaaaaah
      (cries of pain)
      Okay man I can’t breathe
      I can’t breathe sir
      Okay, I can’t fucking breathe
      I can’t please
      Man, I’m sorry man
      aaa okay okay
      Okay I’m sorry
      ow okay okay
      I’m sorry owwww
      I’m sorry dude I’m sorry
      I’m sorry aaaa I’m sorry
      (Repeated cries of pain)
      (cries of pain become more horrible)
      (repeated tasseling)
      Okay pleease
      owwwa aaaaaooowwaawow
      aaaaaah ooo ooooo uuuunnnn oooo aaaagggg

  2. Hey, what’s that sound? Everybody look – what’s going down?


  3. Emotions flow as Calif. police acquitted in death

    SANTA ANA, Calif.—By the time all four verdicts were read clearing two California officers of killing a homeless man, people on both sides of the gallery were sobbing.
    In the audience, the mother of Kelly Thomas wept into a tissue as someone shouted, “No!” A collective gasp went up from the gallery. Former police Cpl. Jay Cicinelli’s attorney pounded twice on the defense table, grabbing his client in a bear hug, as former Officer Manuel Ramos’ family clutched hands and cried.

    Thomas, 37, died five days after a violent confrontation with six officers in July 2011. A surveillance camera at the busy transit center where the incident unfolded captured him screaming for his father again and again and begging for air as the police kneed him, jolted him with an electric stun gun and used the blunt end to strike him around the face and head.

    It was a rare case in which police officers were charged in a death involving actions on duty. Jurors took less than two days to reach their verdicts.

    Ramos, 39, was acquitted of second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter on Monday. Cicinelli, 41, was acquitted of involuntary manslaughter and excessive use of force.

    Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckus, who tried the case himself, said after the verdicts that charges will be dropped against Joseph Wolfe, a third officer awaiting trial.

    The FBI said that it will review the evidence to determine whether federal action is justified.

    “With the conclusion of the state court trial, investigators will examine the evidence and testimony to determine whether further investigation is warranted at the federal level,” said Laura Eimiller, the FBI’s spokeswoman in Los Angeles.

    • racerrodig says:

      Oh, Federal Action is justified.

      • Hi Racer! Nice to see you. Happy New Year! The feds need to step in. The poor man pleaded with them and called for his dad 31 times. It’s so heart breaking.

        Anderson Cooper reported Curtis Reeves (a retired police officer) got into it with another movie goer a few weeks before the shooting over texting. The woman claimed Reeves glared at her the entire time and even got up and followed the woman when she went to the restroom. Talk about crazy. He’s dangerous. Why is he tripping about texting? The movie hadn’t even started. I wonder did he get any ideas about texting from Bill O’Reilly? Bill went on a rant about pot and texting a couple of days ago.

  4. The Zimmerman jurors sent a message with their unjust verdict and now it’s catching like wild fire.

    • Liza says:

      These people who come up with these verdicts must feel very certain that nothing terrible like this could happen to them or their loved ones, never in a million years. Their lack of empathy is astonishing.

      Xena made this comment on her blog: “Juries seem to operate from a Gestapo frame of mind; i.e., if the victim is represented as imperfect, then it justifies their murder to remove them from society.”

      • I agree. In the jurors mind being black, poor, homeless, mentally ill, schizophrenic all justifies their lack of worth to live and breath air.

      • Liza says:

        I’d like to know how many of them watch Fox News and/or listen to conservative talk radio. I would safely bet every single one of them. This case was tried in Orange County which is known for its “conservative” population.

  5. This event page is compiling all of the #KellyThomsVerdict actions.

    The people of Fullerton invite you to join them on Saturday at 10:00 AM at the Fullerton Police department to express your outrage at the lack of justice for Kelly Thomas. Fullerton Police Department, West Commonwealth Avenue, Fullerton, CA

    Anonymous will be protesting at the Fullerton PD at 11:00 AM Tuesday January 14 at Fullerton Police Department, West Commonwealth Avenue, Fullerton, CA

    #OpVforKellyThomas invites you to join them at 8 PM on Wednesday at the The Slidebar Rock N Roll Cafe 122 E. Commonwealth Ave., Fullerton more info:

  6. Kelly Thomas Verdict: Support Your Local Police Uber Alles

    Kelly Thomas died as a result of being beaten, tasered, and suffocated by a thugswarm of police on the July 5, 2011. A jury in Orange County, California — an authoritarian conservative community in which the “Support Your Local Police” movement took root and flourished in the mid-1960s — has acquitted the two ringleaders of that police gang, Manuel Ramos and Ken Cincinelli, of all charges arising from that atrocity.

    Manuel Ramos, who harassed, taunted, and terrorized Thomas for nearly a half-hour before the beating began, was charged with second degree murder and involuntary manslaughter, and faced up to 15 years in prison. Cincinelli, charged with criminal assault, confronted a four-year prison term. Both were fired from the Fullerton Police Department following a public outcry.

    “You see these fists?” Ramos grunted at Kelly, a mentally ill homeless man who was sitting peacefully on the curb. “They’re about to f**k you up.” Such language comes easily to Ramos, who in both his private and professional lives is an enthusiast of gang culture. Thomas had done nothing to warrant attention on the part of the police, let alone a violent arrest. He was beaten with fists, batons, and the butt end of a taser; at various times during the assault, all six police officers — nearly three-quarters of a ton of privileged, tax-fattened, costumed suet — piled on top of the 160-pound man, crushing his chest and causing terminal asphyxia. Thomas died crying out for this father, retired Sheriff’s Deputy Ron Thomas.

    The Department had initially claimed that neither Ramos nor Cincinelli, nor the six other officers who joined in the orgy of officially sanctioned violence, had violated department policy. During the trial, Corporal Stephen Rubio, a training officer at the at the Fullerton PD, insisted that the actions of the officers — including the sadistic threat by Ramos — were compatible with department policy. Defense “expert” witness Stephen Karch, a paid shill who flogs spurious medical theories on behalf of abusive cops, testified that the police beating didn’t kill Thomas, but rather that the mentally troubled man simply chose that time to die from an undiagnosed heart condition.

    John Barnett, the police union attorney who represented the killer cops, insisted that the beating was an appropriate response to Thomas’s pathetic, doomed struggle to save his life. In his closing argument, Orange County DA Tony Rakauckus emphasized that Thomas had the right to resist an unlawful arrest, and to defend himself against the criminal violence initiated by Ramos and Cincincelli.

    The jury validated the argument that the act of resisting such criminal violence is a capital offense worthy of summary execution. Apart from the transparent sophistries offered by Dr. Karch, and the inventive restructuring of the crime by Barnett — who invited the jury to pretend that the unarmed, terrified Thomas posed a threat to a half-dozen armed police officers — the defense had no case. The only way a guilty verdict could be avoided was if the jury, which was drawn from a population deeply tainted (yes, that is the proper word) with Law & Order conservatism, would accept the premise that police have an unqualified license to kill anybody upon whom they focus their malign attention.

    More at the link above.

  7. Liza says:

    Aside from those who have been outright killed, I wonder how many people live with disabilities they sustained from a cop beating or a prison guard beating.

    I guess that no one is counting.

    • Yahtc says:

      I wonder how many people live with disabilities they sustained from a cop beating or a prison guard beating.

      It is scary to think of the huge number.

      Also, I wonder how many brutal beatings are unreported and undocumented because no witnesses were able to videotape them.

      Imagined, too, how horrified the public would have been if the technology had existed to videotape during the summer of 1965 in Los Angeles. What if someone had videotaped what the police did to Frye and the pregnant woman the night of August 11, 1965 and what if people had videotaped brutal beatings by police in the months and years before that?

      • Liza says:

        That is what is so interesting (and incredible) about the video of Rodney King’s police beating. It was 1991, but video cameras were huge. People just weren’t walking around with them. The probability of the police getting caught in the act of using excessive force on video was probably close to zero. But then, there it was.

      • Yahtc says:

        Yes, Liza, what ARE the chances that someone had one of those bulky video cameras and just happened to be where Rodney King was being beating?!

    • racerrodig says:

      I’ll be real honest here. My dad was a cop for nearly 30 years and I can tell you unabashedly that most cops are criminals with guns and badges. Period……end of story.

  8. Liza says:

    Two former officers found not guilty in death of Kelly Thomas
    January 13, 2014, 9:17 p.m.

    Two former Fullerton police officers were found not guilty on all charges Monday afternoon in the death of Kelly Thomas, a schizophrenic man they beat into unconsciousness as he cried out for help on a summer night more than two years ago.

    The Orange County jury’s swift verdict came after just two days of deliberations, ending a case that generated national debate about how police deal with the mentally ill and homeless.

    Orange County Dist. Atty. Tony Rackauckas staked his name on the prosecution, arguing the case himself in court. Rackauckas said the trial was fair.

    “I would do the same thing again,” he said. “I think it’s a matter that a jury had to see.”

    Thomas’ family quietly sobbed as the verdict was read. His mother emerged from the courtroom with red-rimmed eyes. “They murdered my son and they got away with it,” she said.

    Video of the clash at a busy bus depot ignited public outrage. But during the trial, prosecutors and defense attorneys offered wholly different interpretations of the video. Rackauckas said the officers beat a helpless man, while the officers’ attorneys said the lawmen were just doing their job.

    The jury acquitted Manuel Ramos of second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter and Jay Cicinelli of excessive force and involuntary manslaughter.

    As the foreman read the verdict, Cicinelli hugged his attorney, who slammed his hand on the defense table and exulted, “Thank God!”

    The case was the first in the county’s history in which an officer faced murder charges for actions taken on duty. But jurors agreed with defense attorneys that the officers were trying to subdue an unruly suspect, not beat him to death.

    “They did what they were trained to do,” said John Barnett, Ramos’ attorney.

    Jurors were quickly escorted from the courtroom by bailiffs and left the courthouse without commenting on the widely watched case.

    Ron Thomas, Kelly’s father and a former deputy himself, said he hoped that the U.S. Justice Department would file federal charges against the officers. The FBI had been investigating and monitoring the case.

    “I’ve never seen something so bad happen to a human being, and have it done by on-duty police officers,” Thomas said. “And they can walk away scot-free.”

    Laura Eimiller, a spokeswoman for the FBI’s Los Angeles field office, said the agency opened a civil rights investigation into the case in 2011. Now that the state court trial has concluded, she said, “investigators will examine the evidence and testimony to determine if further investigation is warranted at the federal level.”

    Veteran attorneys said murder cases against police officers are inherently difficult because the law allows them to use deadly force as part of the job. Prosecutors had to prove the officers had the intent to harm Thomas above and beyond responding to his actions.

    “Police officers have the privilege, the right to use force to overcome resistance,” said Ira Salzman, a defense attorney who often represents police officers. “When you have the law allowing use of force, that is a tremendous protection.”

    Michael Rains, who represented Bay Area transit officer Johannes Mehserle in his homicide trial for shooting an unarmed man at an Oakland train station, said courts have decided that officers need to be given “a certain amount of deference” for having to make use-of-force decisions in tense, rapidly unfolding situations.

    “The courts recognize that on occasion, when officers are trying to do the right thing, there will be death,” said Rains, whose firm was involved in Cicinelli’s defense.

    The verdict came after nearly three weeks of testimony from 25 witnesses in a often-packed Santa Ana courtroom. At the heart of the trial was the 33-minute surveillance video, synced with audio from recorders worn by officers. Without it, Rackauckas said he probably would not have filed charges.

    He argued it was an obvious depiction of excessive force and told jurors they were watching a homicide.

    Defense attorneys countered that the footage depicted a violent and uncooperative Thomas who gave officers the fight of their lives.

    The recording begins with Ramos, responding to a report of someone rattling car doors, approaching a disheveled, shirtless Thomas outside a downtown Fullerton bus depot.

    Ramos orders Thomas to sit on the curb with his feet out and hands on his knees. A frustrated, and at times sarcastic, Thomas appears to have a difficult time following his commands.

    About 15 minutes into the video, Ramos puts on latex gloves and puts his fists in front of Thomas’ face. “Now you see my fists?… They’re getting ready to f— you up.”

    “Start punching, dude,” Thomas said.

    Moments later, a relatively calm situation quickly escalates. Ramos grabs his arm; Thomas pushes it and starts to move away from Ramos, who takes out his baton. As Thomas is walking away, another officer is seen swinging his baton at the homeless man’s legs.

    (That officer, Joe Wolfe, was charged with involuntary manslaughter, but Rackauckas said Monday prosecutors would not pursue that case after Monday’s verdict.)

    Soon Thomas is on the ground fighting with six officers.

    “I can’t breathe,” Thomas said. “Dad, help me! Dad, help me!”

    Cicinelli struck Thomas on the face with his Taser at least twice. Defense attorneys said he did it as a last resort when the device failed to work properly and only after Thomas attempted to take it away from him.

    They said the video showed officers who were following their training, not out of control.

    Without the video, “we would’ve heard some screaming and crying, but never have seen what happened,” said Michael Schwartz, Cicinelli’s attorney. “Which was a very measured reaction with police officers trying to control a suspect.”

    As the verdicts were coming down, Schwartz quietly and repeatedly said “Thank God.” Seconds later, when Cicinelli was found not guilty of involuntary manslaughter and excessive force under the color of authority, he tightly embraced him.

    “The video, in my eyes, is what helped the most,” Schwartz said.

    Accounts from witnesses and family photos of Thomas’ pummeled face created an immediate public furor at the time of the incident.

    People crammed Fullerton meetings to reprimand or shout at city leaders. Eventually, officials’ response to the incident led to the ouster of three City Council members and the retirement of Fullerton’s chief of police.

    The coroner who conducted Thomas’ autopsy said he died of brain damage from lack of oxygen caused by chest compressions and injuries he sustained at the hands of police.

    But even that finding was highly contested, and the question of what exactly killed Thomas — a weak heart, chest compressions or an intubation tube — took up a large portion of the case.

    Defense attorneys attempted to cast doubt as to the cause of death, challenging the testimony of the coroner and presenting evidence and witnesses that offered alternative causes of death.

    They brought in Dr. Steven Karch, a forensic pathologist who studies how drugs affect the heart. After viewing slides of Thomas’ heart cells, Karch said his death was caused by an enlarged heart due to previous methamphetamine use.

    Barnett, Ramos’ attorney, also pointed to medical records which he said showed that hospital staff had a difficult time inserting a breathing tube into Thomas’ throat. A mistake, he argued, could have killed Thomas.

    Prosecutors maintained that it was the pressure from cops piling on Thomas and facial injuries from Cicinelli’s Taser that killed Thomas.

    In his closing argument, Rackauckas said Thomas feared for his life and had a right to self-defense after Ramos threatened to punch him.

    Furthermore, the D.A. said, Ramos is responsible for what happened to the homeless man because his threat set off the chain reaction that led to his death.

    He painted Cicinelli as a cop who “needed to win at all costs” and used excessive force by striking Thomas on the face with his Taser.

    Lawyers for Cicinelli and Ramos said prosecuting the two officers forced other cops to unnecessarily watch over their shoulders in fear.

    “Not because they fear the criminal, but because they fear the court,” Barnett said. “That fear costs lives.”

    At a homeless encampment behind the courthouse, Cindy Vann and James Calhoun spoke of fear as well.

    “Just because they wear a uniform and a badge doesn’t give them the right to beat anybody like that,” Vann said.

    “It means that they’re gonna run around and do whatever they want,” Calhoun said.

    Kelly Thomas’ ashes are kept in a box in his mother’s bedroom. Cathy Thomas said she had planned to scatter them when all of Kelly’s family was together, but she couldn’t do it.

    “I just couldn’t get rid of them,” she said. “That’s all I have left of him.”,0,6482344.story#ixzz2pnG3GsPd

  9. Yahtc says:

    I have been so shaken and stunned since hearing the NOT guilty verdict.

    How many times can a JURY turn its head
    And pretend IT just doesn’t see?

    How many times must a JURY look
    Before it can really see the lie?

    Yes, AND how many ears must a JURY have
    Before IT can hear TRAYVON cry?

    Yes, and how many deaths will it take till IT knows
    That too many people have died?

    The answer my friend is blowin’ in the wind
    The answer is blowin’ in the wind.

    Our children need to know the answer….their safe future depends upon it.

  10. Liza,

    Mad props! You rocked this post. I tweeted it to the Department of Justice and PoliticsNation. Lets hope we get some action. Kelly Thomas deserves justice!

  11. Yahtc says:

  12. Yahtc says:

  13. Can you believe these savages hugging each other knowing they got away with murder? God help this country! No one is safe with thugs like these on the police force. Who will protect us from the police?

    • racerrodig says:

      They remind me of seeing video of Hitler and his henchmen at his mountain retreat after lunch cavorting about after they just sealed the fate of millions of innocent people.

      I am beginning to believe that vigilante justice may not be such a bad idea with thugs like that. What more does one need in the way of proof……. !?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

      For years, and years……..and years, we all said “….where’s a camera when you need one” with shit like this. Then came the Rodney King video and countless others. What is wrong here……who paid these jurors ??

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