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Kelly Thomas' dad moves forward with civil lawsuit

Kelly Thomas' father is still seeking justice after two ex-Fullerton police officers were acquitted in the death of his son.
January 14, 2014 12:00:00 AM PST
Kelly Thomas' father is still seeking justice after two former Fullerton police officers were acquitted in the death of his son.

Thomas, a 37-year-old mentally ill homeless man, died five days after a violent confrontation with six officers in July 2011. The encounter was caught on surveillance video. Prosecutors said it showed officers abusing their authority and using unlawful excessive force. The defense says the officers were doing their jobs and were faced with a combative suspect.

On Monday, a jury found former police officer Jay Cicinelli and former officer Manuel Ramos not guilty on all charges. Ramos was charged with second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter, and Cicinelli was charged with involuntary manslaughter and excessive force.

During a news conference on Tuesday, Thomas' father, Ron, and his attorney, Garo Mardirossian, said they're going ahead with a civil lawsuit to seek justice.

"These officers avoided taking the stand in front of this jury. I've sent out notices, so we'll be deposing them each under oath and then putting them on the stand and having them explain why they did what they did," said Mardirossian.

In 2011, the FBI also opened an investigation into the incident. The FBI says agents will take another look at evidence to determine if Kelly Thomas' civil rights were violated during the altercation with police.

Meantime, Cicinelli is reportedly going to ask for his job back. According to the Orange County Register, he will make his case for reinstatement to an arbitrator.


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