FBI testified; says Kelly Thomas had right to defend himself against police *UPDATE 2*Submitted by fonzdrew on Wed, 12/11/2013 - 11:20
Expert witness from FBI: Two Fullerton cops (Jay Cicinelli on left; Manny Ramos on right) acted unprofessionally in killing of homeless man
During yesterday's testimony in the Kelly Thomas murder trial, a retired FBI supervising special agent and tactical police training expert told jurors that the 37-year-old homeless man had a right to use force to defend himself against two Fullerton police officers who'd essentially converted themselves into heavily armed thugs with badges.
John Wilson, who spent 60 hours studying the gruesome, July 2011, police attack on an unarmed Thomas, said that officer Manuel Ramos began the minor encounter unnecessarily by immediately taking out his baton, swinging it in both hands and poking it at the victim, who hadn't been physically threatening.
But, according to Wilson, the most unprofessional moment prior to the killing occurred when Ramos mocked the schizophrenia-addled Thomas as stupid, dramatically put on gloves as he towered over him and said, "Now, you see my fists? They're getting ready to fuck you up."
District Attorney Tony Rackauckas played related portions of a surveillance tape of the brutality and, over Ramos defense lawyer John Barnett's incessant objections, asked Wilson if he considered the cop conduct appropriate under the circumstances.
"Clearly, no," replied the 26-year FBI veteran, who at one point served on the U.S. Attorney General's protection detail in Washington, D.C. "I have problems with everything that happened after Ramos put the gloves on."
I heard on KFI Los Angeles from a reporter who was in the court room at this time that the defense attorney ask the FBI agent that if he thought it would be ok if Kelly Thomas had grabbed one of the officers guns and shot them in self defense. The FBI agent responded "yes, that would be his right because he was being attacked." I have found the audio for it, I just hope the link works. Skip to 4:00 for the beginning: