Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This


Kelly Thomas Updates: Thomas' Father Moves Towards Lawsuit, Fullerton Officials Consider Independent Investigation

In this photo taken July 12, 2011, one of the posters the Thomas family posted around the Fullerton Transportation Center in the hopes of eliciting information and video of a police beating they believe led to the death of Kelly Thomas is shown in Fullerton, Calif. (AP Photo/Orange County Register, Joshua Sudock
LAist relies on your reader support.
Your tax-deductible gift today powers our reporters and keeps us independent. We rely on you, our reader, not paywalls to stay funded because we believe important news and information should be freely accessible to all.

A few updates this morning in the case of Kelly Thomas, the 37-year-old homeless man who died after a violent beating by police. Ron Thomas, Kelly's father, has take the first steps towards suing the Fullerton Police Department, reports the Huffington Post.

Thomas, a former sheriff's deputy, filed a claim yesterday against the police that alleges "violation of civil rights, negligence and conspiracy against the city, its police department and the officers that Ron Thomas says caused the death of his son," according to the Post.

In addition to potentially netting the family a lot more than the $900,000 offered to them by Fullerton police to drop the case, the lawsuit would make sure that evidence and documentation of the incident is preserved.

The suit comes just as Fullerton officials gather today to decide whether to launch an independent investigation into the incident, reports NBC LA.

Support for LAist comes from

The meeting will take place at 9:00 this morning, and will consider whether to bring on Michael Gennaco, the chief attorney for the Los Angeles County Office of Independent Review, to look into the case. According to NBC:

His investigation into the arrest of Thomas will include an examination of the police department, which has been under pressure since the July 5 altercation involving Thomas -- a 37-year-old homeless man diagnosed with schizophrenia -- and six Fullerton officers at a transit station.

The case is already being reviewed by the FBI and the Orange County District Attorney's Office.