Lawsuit: Fullerton Bar Manager Enticed Police with a Lie Before Officers Beat Kelly Thomas to Death

Kelly Thomas police brutality 88.jpg
Savage police brutality: The last minutes of Thomas' life
A fired security guard at the Slidebar Rock-N-Roll Kitchen in Fullerton has filed a lawsuit accusing Lit guitarist Jeremy Popoff, an owner of the establishment, with enticing police to harass Kelly Thomas on the day officers savagely beat the homeless, schizophrenic man to death in July 2011, and then ordered staff to obstruct justice by lying about their involvement to homicide investigators.

In the 25-page lawsuit filed in Orange County Superior Court, Michael Reeves claims that he was first intimidated by Popoff to participate in the cover up and later fired after he cooperated in District Attorney Tony Rackauckas' probe that resulted in the arrests of two cops.

Reeves claims in the court filing that he had been expected to echo Popoff's "false mantra" that "Slidebar had nothing to do" with Thomas' gruesome demise because "as a former rock star" the Slidebar owner "was obsessed with Slidebar's image."


Prior to Thomas' death, that obsession prompted Popoff to ban all homeless persons from entering Slidebar, according to the lawsuit.

"Popoff's 'no homeless people' policy kept Thomas out of Slidebar but it did not keep Thomas out of sight, as Popoff wanted," Reeves said in the court filing. "So, in June 2011, Popoff called a meeting at Slidebar with all his managers and instructed them to call police whenever they saw Thomas around Slidebar and to do anything necessary to get Thomas away."

Reeves claims the staff initially called police to complain that Thomas, 37, was loitering. Each time, arriving officers merely told him to move. "This response did not satisfy Popoff because the police took too long to respond and Thomas would always return to the area and spoil the image Popoff had for Slidebar and himself," according to the lawsuit.
 
Next, Reeves claims, "Popoff told Slidebar managers to do whatever it takes to keep Thomas away."
 

On the evening of July 5, Reeves was on duty and saw Thomas in a nearby parking lot picking up cigarette butts.


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21 comments
doctordetroitsrudera
doctordetroitsrudera

Story is true.  I was working security that night too, and Mike is telling the truth.Kelly Thomas wasn´t picking up butts quietly though.  He was screaming and occasionally masturbating at the bus station.  Other than that, the story is factual.

Ronrexl
Ronrexl

So Popoff went from being a second-rate, barely-famous "guitarist" to the very worst sort of petty capitalist. Or maybe the trendy tattooed rebel pose was in him what it almost always is: a pose.

Ron
Ron

There is, in Fullerton, a particularly virulent strain of the disease that afflicts the OC.

Xenu
Xenu

This is the FIRST thing i've ever agreed with you on!  The hub and the Reagan years were amazing! Many first dates there ended up with me getting laid - great place and no douches back then :)

Scooby Snacks
Scooby Snacks

ahhh man the Hub and Reagans years....... I miss Koo's though my days volunteering there where some of the best memories. (ya ya I know you think Dennis is a sell out)

Bri K
Bri K

Not sure how I found this story but after reading the comments I'm just shaking my head in wonderment as to how all you little boys survived this far! Name calling and even thinking you're journalists?...LMAO Thats some funny stuff there!

Jn Brown
Jn Brown

but the FPD needs a place to meet drunk college tang.  then if they can't hook up they can just pull them over and rape them later.  win/win for the Sleazebar/FPD

Jn Brown
Jn Brown

come on.   stop in get a glass of water, read the menu for half an hour then go

Jn Brown
Jn Brown

you mean Half Pipe?  he lost more than his eye in that shooting.  that was from " a heavily bearded man". think this gave him "issues" with Kelly?

Jn Brown
Jn Brown

some reports are saying a non emergency number, but the police have said a car burglary report.  we should see it on camera what happened all night on the camera.  where is that part?

Jn Brown
Jn Brown

why wasn't he arrested then?

Jn Brown
Jn Brown

that works but more fun is ordering some food,  send it back six times, get huffy and leave. activism is very satisfying.

Jn Brown
Jn Brown

i don't give a rats patoot if this guy is trying to get over as long as he gives out the info.

mario from ontario
mario from ontario

man is everyone one on a witch hunt out there?? in the good ol OC?? Jeremy had nothing to do with the COPS beating thomas to death.. that was the sole action of the cops themselves.. cops have killed many innocent people and will again.. even if he didnt want any homeless people around.. that is the common view point of "any" business person..  everyone is all so supporting of the victim, but yet if this would not have happened, how many of you would actually have given him even a dollar if he would have asked for one... (90% would not!).., homeless people (as sad as their situation is) is something everyone prefers not to have around their neighborhoods... if you say different, then you are not being honest... this "If, then, therefore" logic is such BS... in that case, if kelly would not have been at the slidebar parking lot, then..etc..etc..  so now is it his fault??.. maybe one of the cops wife didnt have sex with him the night before so now he is frustrated.. and takes it out on kelly thomas..??  so now is it her fault??.. stop fishing for excuses why he was murdered by the cops...... bottom line... the cops beat him to death.. the same logic was used againt rodney king... if he was not driving fast that night he never would have been in the car chase and gotten beaten in the end........ again.. "if, then, therfore" logic isnt the answer....  hopefully some of you narrow minded people can now see the light.... a person is not to blame, the bar is not to blame,.. the cops chose to be overly agressive and that is what killed thomas.. no phone call.. and no other person....

OC Citizen
OC Citizen

Lieberman are you one of those Mexi Jews? Mazel!

S. Gonzalez
S. Gonzalez

Brings back memories of the government cheese.

Nick Ames
Nick Ames

The Whole Thing boils down to.........Locals need to be Involved. County and City governments exist so that The People, all of them, can have the kind of government and Police Force they want and you hire a Chief and police to police they way the community wants. Counties and cities throughout the State, enforce a lot of different things differently. Vote for a D.A. this November, for example. Power to The People!

Nick Ames
Nick Ames

Oh, Our Fearless Leader is now Gustavo, of course.

Nick Ames
Nick Ames

Anon......is pretty smart. Smart enough to request some of what Our Fearless Leader is smoking! Good Move........gine him SOME Credit!

MamaGloc13
MamaGloc13

This happens all the time. The mentally ill are put on the street because lack of insurance,& families that care. Those s.o.b. cops aren't gonna get much time, 6 yrs tops - time off for good behavior their looking at 3 /4 yrs. Plus they'll be in s.n.y. "special needs yard"because. Their police officers, they need to be protected. I say who protected that man? No one. So they should be on their own. Made to fight for survival or become "pookys" b..ch!

JES
JES

why can't anyone answer the question? Reeves asked for money before he took this to the DA isn't that called extortion? why wasn't this mentioned in the article?

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