Fullerton police officer involved in beating death of Kelly Thomas identified as Jay Cicinelli

The W.C. Varones Blog has friends who are police officers. Most police officers are faithful civil servants, and many are true heroes.

But when cops go bad, it's important to bring them to justice even more so than ordinary bad guys, because they operate under the color of authority. And the beating death of defenseless, unarmed homeless guy Kelly Thomas appears to be such a case.

It speaks poorly of police unions and police rank-and-file that they tend to rally to the defense of bad cops rather than admit that there are some bad apples and evaluate each case on the facts.

More on the Kelly Thomas beating death here and here. More on Jay Cicinelli here.

The beating was recorded on police security camera video, but the city refuses to release it. An onlooker recorder this video, where you can't see much but can hear public shocked reaction to the overwhelming force as well as the pleas of the dying man, "Dad! Dad! Dad!" The city has not suspended, even pending investigation, any of the officers involved.

Tea Partiers denounce the bad apples among them. Why won't cops do the same? Is there a Blue Code of Silence?


Charlie McDanger said...

Ye reap in your police what ye sow in your soldiers.

Anonymous said...

Sagon Penn had killed a police officer in self defense in the mid 1980s, then was acquitted of all charges, because the defense attorney successfully argued that the San Diego PD was racist. Penn was black.

Anonymous said...

Police are not your friend nor public servant. Get a grip on reality.

SarahB said...

There is a startling lack of insider scuttlebutt going on with this case. Fullerton has clamped down hard, and that is dumb, dumb, dumb. Most cops I talk to know this looks bad and that one or more will go down for this. But with rumors of video that hasn't been made public and lack of a toxicology report, no one is going to say anything...just yet.

I give it a 25% chance Thomas was hopped up on something that helped him resist arrest. Schizophrenics are notorious for 'self medicating'...especially the homeless ones. Generally they are homeless because they refused prescription meds and become too dangerous for family to care for. Thomas wasn't living with the family that is now so outraged by his death. Why weren't they able to care for him if he was so harmless?

But there is also ONE rumor (and I stress the term, rumor) about a particular fullerton cop that will more likely end up being the bad seed in all this. My money is criminal charges against one officer with disciplinary action (or firing) against 2 or 3 for not stopping him. Expect the Chief to resign for mishandling the PR and transparency.

Happy Super Tuesday!