The three-week trial ended quickly and decisively Monday with jurors rejecting second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter charges against Manuel Ramos and involuntary manslaughter and excessive force charges against Jay Cicinelli.
Both former officers lowered their heads and Cicinelli’s attorney, Mark Schwartz, pounded his fist on the table before hugging his client. Thomas’ family wept softly.
Cicinelli was ecstatic, Schwartz said.
‘He was relieved, after 21/2 years of having this over your head,’ Schwartz said. ‘We’re just going to have to take a deep breath and enjoy the moment.’
Update 2: From the LA Times:
Ramos, Cicinelli and their families were swiftly escorted out of the courtroom.
Ron Thomas, Kelly Thomas’ father, said he was stunned by the verdict, saying he’d never seen such a miscarriage of justice.
Thomas also suggested that federal authorities should look into the case.
Ramos’ attorney, John Barnett, told reporters: ‘These peace officers were doing their jobs…they did what they were trained to do.’
Orange County Dist. Atty. Tony Rackauckas said prosecutors would not pursue charges against a third Fullerton officer accused in the Thomas case. That officer’s trial was pending.
‘I don’t intend to proceed with another trial when the two officers here were acquitted,’ he told reporters.
The jury took less than a full day of deliberation to reach the not-guilty verdicts.
Update 1: just found this livestream video.
A friend just alerted me to the fact that the verdicts were coming in on the Kelly Thomas trial and I turned on KFI just in time to hear them. My stomach is turning. Both Ramos and Cicinelli are not guilty of all charges. Unfuckingbelievable.
I wrote about this case quite some time ago and others have posted more recently.
More links and info to come.