|For Immediate Release
September 21, 2011
|Susan Kang Schroeder
Chief of Staff
OCDA CHARGES TWO FULLERTON POLICE OFFICERS FOR THE BEATING-DEATH OF 37-YEAR-OLD HOMELESS MAN
SANTA ANA – Orange County District Attorney (OCDA) Tony Rackauckas filed charges this morning against two police officers from the Fullerton Police Department (FPD) for their criminal participation in the beating-death of a homeless man, 37-year-old Kelly Thomas.
Officer Manuel Ramos is charged with one felony count of second degree murder and one felony count of involuntary manslaughter. He faces a maximum sentence of 15 years to life in state prison if convicted. Corporal Jay Cicinelli is charged with one felony count of involuntary manslaughter and one felony count of the use of excessive force. He faces a maximum sentence of four years in state prison if convicted.
The defendants surrendered this morning to OCDA Investigators and will be arraigned today, Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2011, at 2:00 p.m. in Department C-55, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana. Per the statutory bail amounts, the People will request $1 million bail for Ramos and $25,000 bail for Cicinelli.
Due to a lack of evidence, as described below, criminal charges were not filed against the remaining four officers involved in the incident including Officer Joseph Wolfe, Officer Kenton Hampton, Sergeant Kevin Craig, and Corporal James Blatney.
The decision regarding the filing of criminal charges was made by District Attorney Rackauckas following an extensive investigation and thorough legal review by the OCDA. The District Attorney will be announcing the trial team at a later date.