Trial set for ex-Fullerton cops in homeless beating case

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An October trial date was set Friday for two ex-Fullerton police officers charged in connection with the beating death of a Kelly Thomas, a mentally-ill, homeless man. 

Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas said Manuel Anthony Ramos, 39, and Jay Patrick Cicinelli, 41 will face a jury trial on October 18.  

"Would I like the trial today, yes," said Ron Thomas, Kelly Thomas' father. "But it's going to happen so I'm OK with that."

The two former police officers appeared in court Friday on a severance motion by Cicinelli's attorney. Rackauckas said the motion was denied and the two men will appear next for a pre-trial hearing August 30.

Manuel Ramos previously pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter in the death of Kelly Thomas. Jay Cicinelli also pleaded not guilty to charges of manslaughter and excessive force. Both remain free on bail.

A third former Fullerton police officer charged in the case, Joe Wolfe, faces involuntary manslaughter charges in connection with the beating death of Kelly Thomas.

Orange County District Attorney Rackauckas said he’d like to combine Wolfe's case with the other two officers' charged for one trial. 

Ron Thomas said he wants that to happen too.

"But he [Wolfe] isn't going away, he's going to go to trial too," said Thomas.

Kelly Thomas died five days after a violent confrontation with six officers who were responding to reports of car burglaries at the Fullerton Transportation Center in July 2011.

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