Photo by Friends for Fullerton
A photograph of Kelly Thomas in downtown Fullerton, CA.
The father of Kelly Thomas held a press conference this morning to reveal how and why his son died a few days after a police beating in Fullerton. Frustrated by the Orange County District Attorney’s pace in determining the cause of death, Thomas wants to reveal through computer-generated animation a detailed version of the cause of Kelly Thomas’ death. Earlier this week, the D.A. Tony Rackauckas said that his office was more than halfway finished with its investigation into Thomas’s death. But their office is still missing key pieces of evidence, including the cause of death and toxicology reports, which the Orange County Coroner’s office has yet to conclude. Kelly Thomas’ medical records from the hospital where he died show doctors found head trauma to be cause of death. They also believed the taser gun, which officers used repeatedly to shock Thomas, was directed at his heart, according to one of his lawyers, Garo Mardirossian. But since the Orange County coroner’s office has yet to report the official cause of death, an official conclusion can not be made yet. So how did Kelly Thomas die? Did the police use a necessary amount of force against him? Or was it too excessive? Why has the coroner’s office not released the official cause of Thomas’ death?
Corey Moore, KPCC Reporter