Homeless Man Beaten to Death by PolicemenTuesday, May 08, 2012 By Melody Chen
Kelly Thomas, a 37-year-old homeless man with schizophrenia, was beaten to death by two California police officers on July 5. A graphic video showed Thomas on the ground screaming in pain and begging for help as the two police officers continued to kick and punch him. The officers involved were 10-year veteran Manuel Ramos and Jay Patrick Cicinelli from Fullerton, California. Ramos now faces charges of second degree murder and involuntary manslaughter, while Cicinelli faces charges of involuntary manslaughter and felony use of excessive force. Although both officers have chosen to plead not guilty, the video shows Thomas sitting down shirtless when approached by Ramos. Ramos orders Thomas to put his feet out and put his hands on his knees. When Thomas is slow to cooperate, Ramos tells him, “You see my fists? They’re getting ready to f--- you up.” As Thomas begins to stand up, Cicinelli approaches Ramos before both officers begin repeatedly beating Thomas with their batons and holding him on the ground. Hearing about such immoral and unethical behavior really tore at my heart. To read that a helpless and mentally-ill man was beaten to death by two police officers serves only as an introduction to the unheard corruption that exists all over the United States. It’s important for the public to be aware of this type of wrongdoing so that it can be avoided in the future. Although it’s impossible to fully prevent corruption, it’s imperative that people gain perspective about what is right and wrong so that tragedies such as the death of Kelly Thomas can be avoided.