Ex-Cops Acquitted In Beating Death Of Homeless Man In California

Ex-cops acquitted in beating death of homeless man in California (CNN, Jan 14, 2014):

A jury has acquitted two former Fullerton, California, police officers on trial in the beating death of Kelly Thomas, a mentally ill and homeless man.

The verdict was read in a Santa Ana courtroom Monday afternoon. Eight women and four men began deliberating the case on Thursday.

“I’m just horrified. They got away with murdering my son,” Cathy Thomas, the victim’s mother, told reporters after the verdict was read.

The victim’s father, Ron Thomas, said that everyone now needs to be afraid.

“This is carte blanche to police officers to do whatever they want,” he told reporters.

The beating of Thomas in a transit parking lot was recorded by security cameras on the night of July 5, 2011. The surveillance camera footage shows Thomas being beaten, clubbed and stunned with a Taser by police. The video sparked a nationwide outcry.

Former officer Manuel Ramos was charged with second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter. A second former Fullerton officer, Jay Cicinelli, was charged with involuntary manslaughter and excessive use of force.

Both were found not guilty on all charges.

“These peace officers were doing their job. They had no malice in their heart,” said John Barnett, an attorney for Ramos.

When asked about the video, he said it’s “not the entire case.”

In closing arguments, Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas told jurors that Ramos bore responsibility for Thomas’s death because he issued a threat to the uncooperative homeless man. Ramos can be seen on the surveillance video putting on gloves and shaking his fist in Thomas’ face.

 

2 thoughts on “Ex-Cops Acquitted In Beating Death Of Homeless Man In California

  1. Police brutality is a reality in today’s America. There is a similar incident now in Sonoma County…..I bet the cops get off.
    About 3 years ago, an entire thoroughfare was shut down by the Santa Rosa, CA police. They had shot and killed a homeless man on his bicycle. The homeless man was known in the area, he was gentle, harmless…….and the cops got away with it.
    Shoot first, ask questions later is now how they do business. On their behalf, I have to point out this has become a very violent society, and people shoot at cops, too.
    Fullerton is a big city with plenty of crime.
    Our society is crumbling, this is one more aspect of the overall deterioration. This society promotes violence. Look at the junk on TV, the popular video games……it is the entire picture.
    A video game called Car Jacking has been in the top five for several years. What does that say about our society?
    The problem isn’t just the police, it is the entire society.

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