Kelly Thomas, Fullerton Homeless Man, May Have Been Beaten To Death By Police
New video has emerged of eye witnesses recounting the July 5th beating of homeless man Kelly Thomas in Fullerton, California. Friends of Fullerton obtained security footage of a bus where several people who witnessed the incident discussed what they saw at length.
From the transcript [PDF] (M refers to "man," W2 means "second woman," B refers to "bus driver"):
M: I'm telling you Homeless guy was just chillin', and then the cops came, two cop cars came, two cops, they tried getting him but he just ran off from them, ran away from them, and then they caught him pound his face, pound his face, against the curb, was red, and they beat him up
W2: They can't do that.
M: And two other more cops came, and tazed him six times
M: They beat him up, and then all the cops came and they hog tied him, and he was like, "Please God, please dad!"
B: They killed him?...
W2: There's a huge puddle of blood right there...
B: There's a good pool of blood...
The Huffington Post first wrote about Thomas' beating and death when video surfaced of the incident. While the camera isn't pointed toward the violence, audio of Thomas being tased, screaming, and calling out for his father can be heard in the background.
Fullerton Police were called to the bus depot on July 5 because of reports that someone was breaking into cars. Authorities tried to arrest Thomas, a homeless man who suffered from schizophrenia. When he resisted, six police subdued him with tasers and other means for about six minutes. Thomas then fell into a coma and was treated at the UCI Medical Center. Less than a week later, he died because of his severe injuries (photo here. WARNING: EXTREMELY GRAPHIC).
The Orange County District Attorney's Office and the FBI are now investigating the case, reports CBS Los Angeles.
Ron Thomas, Kelly's father, claims that the the City of Fullerton offered him $900,000 to settle the civil side of the case. He first revealed this on the John and Ken Show KFI 640, but city officials will not confirm this, reports the OC Register. All six officers involved in the incident have been placed on administrative leave for now as the investigation is ongoing, reports CBS Los Angeles.
*This entry has been updated to reflect the status of the officers involved.