Former nightclub bouncer Michael Reeves says he heard the phone call that led to Fullerton police confronting Kelly Thomas last July and that the report was bogus.
Reeves said he was working at the Slidebar Rock and Roll Kitchen when he heard the manager call Fullerton police and report that Kelly Thomas was breaking into cars.
Reeves said Thomas was only picking up cigarette butts outside the club. Reeves is suing his former employer for lost wages and emotional distress.
He said he was fired last September for bringing up the phone call and for talking to the Orange County district attorney about it.
Police have said they responded to a report of a man trying to open car doors when they confronted Thomas, a mentally-ill homeless man.
Thomas died of chest and head injuries five days after he was beaten by police.
His father, Ron Thomas, said the officers knew who his son was when they arrived on the scene.
“None of it has anything to do with the way the police officers handled Kelly and what was going on there," said Ron Thomas about the false phone call claim. "The officers were looking for Kelly by name and description."
The Slidebar’s owner confirmed that an employee did call police from the club.
Fullerton Police officers Manuel Ramos and Jay Cicinelli face arraignment June 26 on charges of second degree murder and involuntary manslaughter in connection with Kelly Thomas’ death.
The incident led to the recall of three Fullerton City Council members June 5. The three were criticized for how they responded to the beating of Kelly Thomas.
The June 19 Fullerton City Council meeting has been cancelled because there is no quorum as a result of the recall.
This story has been updated.