Well-Paid Defense Witness For Killer Cops: Kelly Thomas Could Have Died Without Beating

jaycicinellikt.jpg
Media pool photography by The Orange County Register
Hmmmm: Jay "I smashed Kelly Thomas' face" Cicinelli ponders testimony in the murder trial
The defense of two ex-Fullerton Police Department cops charged in the gruesome, unnecessary, 2011 killing of Kelly Thomas rested its case today, but not before introducing the most outrageous assertions of a trial that has garnered international attention.

Pocketing $750 an hour from the defense, a jovial Dr. Steven B. Karch entered Judge William R. Froeberg's Santa Ana courtroom on behalf of defendants Manuel Ramos and Jay Cicinelli to tell jurors a coroner and a UCI Medical Center trauma surgeon (both of whom have firsthand knowledge of the case) were wrong to rule the severe, seven-minute police beating of Thomas caused the death.

Instead, Karch wants jurors to believe Thomas was a member of the walking dead who'd essentially killed himself years earlier by abusing methamphetamine that weakened and enlarged his heart.

He testified that Thomas--unarmed, sober, schizophrenic and 37 years old at the time of the police attack--had been on the verge of dying anyway.

In common parlance, according to Karch, Thomas' heart condition was like "eating one's self."

The defense witness claimed Thomas would have been "lucky" to live into his 40s anyway.

See?

In the magically warped snow dome created by defense lawyers John Barnett and Michael Schwartz, Thomas could have easily died on July 5, 2011, absent the police assault.

"He could have died sitting in a closet by himself," Karch testified.

Despite the half-hour video of the savage killing of the homeless man who'd committed no serious crime, the witness boldly stated that "only God can say" if the police brutality played a role in the death.

Karch, who has already collected more than $20,000 in fees from the defense, also opined that Thomas had been clinically crazy on the night of his death.

"For all I know, [Thomas] could have been seeing a six-headed monster [during his contact with police]," he testified.


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88 comments
subvet
subvet

If this jury can look at the video and then somehow pay any credence to this hired guns foolishness, then God help us all. When it happens to them or a loved one they will have only themselves to blame.

Betsy Short
Betsy Short

This is making me sick & upset... I just need to go back to listening to music right now!

jaRealism
jaRealism

Good article, hope justice is served. Rest in Peace Kelly Thomas

Heather Maves
Heather Maves

No excuse for police brutality & force of any sort! They wear badges not to help people but bully them!

Steve Calderon
Steve Calderon

Ramos and Cicinelli must have enjoyed Karch's snow job because they smiled and joked around with family and friends after the jury left the courtroom for the day.

Rich Ezeikiel
Rich Ezeikiel

Not all cops are bad! It take a whole team of good cops to get the bad cops off the hook for murder!

larrylopez
larrylopez

It became like a shark frenzy when these cops started beating the shit out of Kelly.

The defense can call all the nutcase witnesses they want, they can bring up Kelley's past.  But I tell you this, the video does not LIE.   The cops did their best to cover their tracks, taking the civilians cell phone video and deleting, they however did not realize or did not have access to the parking lot video, thankfully.   I say it won't take the jury more then 6 hours to come up with guilty verdicts.

RAPman
RAPman

I assume that the jury is intelligent enough to see through the tactics of the defense.

BobLoblawsLawBlog
BobLoblawsLawBlog

By law, if I shoot a man and kill him as he's falling from a plane, I am guilty of murder. Regardless if he was on the verge of death. I hope an administrative error puts these guys in gen-pop when they go to prison. I say this not because I do not like cops, I think they're great and have several as friends, but because these guys paint the rest of them with the same shit-covered brush.

"For all I know, [Thomas] could have been seeing a six-headed monster [during his contact with police],"

He did see that and they were wearing FPD uniforms and badges.

Paul Wright
Paul Wright

His past is his past the fact is he was beaten to death

gm0622
gm0622

How can this miserable piece of shit (IMHO), face himself in the mirror every morning and get restful sleep at night?

Travis Mullen
Travis Mullen

Is it just me, or does it look like Cicinelli is missing the eyelashes from his left eye?

Joe Smith
Joe Smith

Why do they lie? Man up and admit what you did was extremely out of line, a betrayal of the community & policing, then work out a deal and civil penalty to his kin? People who become pigs are sick in the head. If I did the same ( which would be incomprehensible to me towards an innocent), I would be facing life or at least 20. Why do they get special treatment? In the words of Jayden from Oakland- "Fuck that motherfucker!"

4gensocal
4gensocal

If the sad truth becomes the acquittal of the Fullerton Police Officers who murdered Kelly Thomas, on the basis of testimony of a clearly biased witness giving erroneous suppositions that Kelly would have died anyway, I know for sure the silver lining to that ugly dark cloud will the unmasking of the Real OCto the entire world, a place of institutionalized and deep seated bigotry and hatred, hidden behind a facade of glamour and glitz. Orange County's so called "Power Elite" and the idiots they get elected will finally have a lot of explaining to do. I believe Kelly Thomas will become an even bigger inspiration and hero to those, not just locally, but all over the world who seek to prevent the innocent slaughter of human beings by mad men with too much power. People all over this country and the world will demand change. Kelly won't die in vain. The Police Officers may walk, but they won't ever be free again.

Brianna Knowlton
Brianna Knowlton

Unfortunately its the money that is making them keep a straight face. Im sure that afterwards they are drinking and probably smoking and laughing their asses off while racking in the money.

Brianna Knowlton
Brianna Knowlton

This case is beyond outrages. I can not believe the defense are doing such low blows to try and get these poor excuse for police officers acquitted. I hope they throw the book at these 2 for perjury as well as for murder. RIP Kelly!

ltpar
ltpar topcommenter

Damn, 20 grand.  Where do you sign up to be a court expert?  Sounds like Karch is  an expert in cardiac pathology and not in field police work.  I disagree with his comment on not paying attention to the complaints of Thomas regarding his breathing difficulty.  Regardless of who the arrestee is, or what crime they have committed, preserving life is first and foremost priority for the on scene Police Officer's agenda.  Granted, Thomas may have been having a psychotic episode, but you always err on the side of caution, get paramedics to check and avoid situations like this one.  That doesn't seem to have been done in this case.      

g.judd1111
g.judd1111

Why is the OC Weekly calling them killer cops and describing the crime as the "killing" of Kelly Thomas.  Legally there is a big difference.  Ramos was charged with second degree murder, not second degree killing.  Manslaughter = killing.  We don't want him to get his hands slapped for the lesser charge. So call it what it is Moxley, MURDER.

Gillie Bob
Gillie Bob

Wow, are you kidding me? To only think of such things and then blatantly believe what Karch is saying to be believable.... Oh my god, we are doomed back to the stone age if the jury actually contemplates on allowing that testimony to be admissible and acceptable is just ludicrous!

Raul Juarez
Raul Juarez

And what the hell is wrong with Stanton?!!! Lol

Raul Juarez
Raul Juarez

I admit, i i didn't follow the case word for word, but everytime i got home from work and turned the tube on, they had everyone on the stand saying how violent he was, including his familia. I'm just sayin'.

Keenan Roberts
Keenan Roberts

Wow!! If you ever wanted to kill someone and get away with it. Become a cop, they're untouchable.

OC Weekly
OC Weekly

If you think the defense presented a strong case, you must also think Stanton is OC's richest city...

g.judd1111
g.judd1111

Maybe this will be Rodney King all the way to the end.

Val Solis
Val Solis

Throw the defense team in jail too.

sslp
sslp

Guilty!!!!!


g.judd1111
g.judd1111

Kelly got high on meth?  Prove it.  He was never busted for drugs in his whole adult life at least not in Orange County.  Besides dabbling with meth doesn't cause someones heart to blow up.  I hope the jurors are smart enough to see through this mob lawyers defense.

Raul Juarez
Raul Juarez

We all know why Thomas is dead. The defense, however, presented a strong case. There will be an aquittal. Will there be a backlash?

fc2479
fc2479

NOT GUILTY!!!!!!!!!!

dickbubkus
dickbubkus

@larrylopez Hey, Larry.  I say you're wrong!  By the way, the cops are fully aware of the parking lot surveillance cameras.  All of them know where they are and what their field of vision is.  So you're assumption that the cops were unaware of this is also wrong.  You didn't see flashlights raining down, kicking, stomping, baton blows, etc., just a few blows to the face with the taser, a piece of plastic weighing about 10 ounces.  No skull fractures, no brain bleeding, just a few cuts along with a broken nose and cheek, none of which would contribute to death.  Moral of the story: don't resist multiple cops for a full 6 minutes and everything will be just fine.  Just put your hands behind your back when ordered to do so and you'll eventually get out of jail.  Maybe even that night!

Hitman_Corleone
Hitman_Corleone

Larrylopez, I hope your right! But I have to admit, the defense is playing some tricky games and as we know jurors don't usually get it right! And because it's a murder trial, it has to be a unanimous decision! 12-0!! Again, I'm worried! If they get off, all citizens will be target practice for all cops more so then we are now!! Let's all hope Kelly gets the belated Christmas present he deserves!!! and let's not forget the fact if they get off, they will appeal their termination!! God Help us all!!

18usc241
18usc241 topcommenter

This will end when people around the world are too busy vomiting on this entertainment industrial mafia complex to be bothered attending it. There won't be enough cheese to save your corrupt derrieres.

Hey maybe you can sell tickets claiming this to be a bona fide California ghost town?

dkmomemtp
dkmomemtp

RAUL JAUREZ YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT THE HELL YOU SPEAK OF! SO JUST SHUT THE F UP ALREADY!!! 3 THINGS 1ST. HE HAD MENTAL ILLNESS AND HIS FAMILY WAS AFRAID OF HIM ONLY WHEN HE WASN'T TAKING HIS MEDS! 2ND. HOW DOES ONE GET MEDS INTO SOMEONE WHEN THEY DON'T WANT TO TAKE THEM OLDER THEN 18? 3RD. I LIVE IN THE ANAHEIM PART OF STANTON AND WHAT IS WRONG WITH THE CITY OF STANTON ARE MOST THE PEOPLE AREN'T EVEN SAPOSE TO BE HERE! MY CHILD 1 OF 5 MIXED LOOKING WHITE KID'S! IN THE SCHOOL! MY TAX MONEY GOING TO FING WASTE THAT IS WHAT IS WRONG WITH STATON! ENOUGH ALREADY CLOSE THE BORDERS DEPORT OR START TAXING THE HELL OUT OF THE ILLEGALLS AND ALL THE KID'S THEY HAVE IN CALIFORNIA!!! 

rscottmoxley
rscottmoxley topcommenter

@fc2479 Thanks, fc2479! Your enthusiastic assertion is soooo true. Kelly Thomas was killed by a group of Fullerton cops and was not guilty of any crime. Who kills somebody over nothing? Sadly for the decent Fullerton police officers, the answer in this case is fellow officers.

fc2479
fc2479

Aren't you as a journalist supposed to report both sides???   You are supposed to be impartial....I on the other hand am not a journalist I can voice my opinion.  So, why not do an article on why the cops are what they are....innocent!!!! 

RayG
RayG

The facts seem quite clear. 8 people beat an unarmed man to death. Which facts are you aware of that absolve them of responsibility for this? Even if Thomas had committed a crime there is no way to justify that kind of behavior from the people out there to 'protect us.' If that is the 'tough job' they are out helping us with - well, I can do without, thanks. Even assuming most cops are decent and doing something worthwhile (which I would disagree with), how does that fact translate to absolution for the scum that perpetrated this crime? The question is simple: If these men were not police, would they be guilty of murder? We both know the answer. They are guilty and got away with murder. Had the tables been turned (a cop beaten) would a judge even allow such insulting suppositions in paid testimony ('for all I know' [emphasis there] he was seeing things and was going to die anyway)?

Maybe now that they've been acquitted, these fine examples of policemen can serve and protect you.

jaRealism
jaRealism

@fc2479

God forbid your views on this outcome of this case isn't the same with too many others as well or we're in trouble as a humane society. You have to be joking. Theres been decades of a lot of countless brutal and horrifying deaths of innocent citizens committed by cops, so you may be happy to find you are among a tiny team or at least those with the finances who condone these sinful acts on humanity. They may escape justice, eventually though the Lord will judge cops, then Satan will deal them.

jaRealism
jaRealism

@GustavoArellano @fc2479

Fc 2479 is either in la la land or beyond egregious

BobLoblawsLawBlog
BobLoblawsLawBlog

All fc2479 is trying to tell you is that you should try to imagine a situation where you see a poor, small and innocent man on the street that fills you with such contempt that you and your friends would beat him to death and then use your profession as a shield against any repercussions. Jeez Gus, c'mon!

GustavoArellano
GustavoArellano moderator editortopcommenter

@fc2479Oh, I see: you're a PRETEND cop! "IT Security" AHAHAHAHA!

GustavoArellano
GustavoArellano moderator editortopcommenter

@fc2479"Walk in the shoes." You mean killing an unarmed man? Pathetic..

ltpar
ltpar topcommenter

@GustavoArellano @fc2479 Opinions are like ass holes, everybody has one.  Why are your opinions more important that those of fc2479?  In the end, the only opinion that will count in this tragic case is that of the twelve men and women on the jury.  They will have the final say.  

fc2479
fc2479

Ok, here we go, first off lets get it straight here.  I am not a Orange county police Officer or Deputy.  Have never been, do not want to be.  I am too old for that, I work in the boring world of IT security.  Yes in my business and with the company I work for I come in contact with alot of police officers.  I find them to be very nice and courteous people which I have enormous respect for.   I am not lecturing you on journalism, because I am not a journalist.  That said what little I know about journalism and having read many articles in major publications.  I have found that the best writers and reporters are the ones that report the facts as they exist.  Again this is just my humble opinion. They do not attempt to insert their opinions in their reporting.  As far as honest cops I have heard a different opinion from professionals in the field.  I take what you write as your opinion.  Not fact, I also have my opinion.  So I guess we agree to disagree.   As far as sick, twisted cops go, if it is so bad and you are such a crusader, why don't you become a reserve cop and put you money where your mouth is and try to make a change.  Instead of arm quarterbacking the people on the street, with the tough job.  Cause I got news for you cops in our society are not going away.  

rscottmoxley
rscottmoxley topcommenter

@fc2479 It's also sadly humorous that an Orange County police officer/deputy cowardly feels the need to bark from a fake name and thinks he can lecture me on journalism. (Nice try but, I don't think so.) Despite your knee-jerk, content-empty ramblings, the majority of my sources are law enforcement. What do honest cops say about the savage killing of Kelly Thomas? They are disgusted. Will pro-cop BS from highly paid mouthpieces and defense lawyer absurdities sway the jury? Probably. I've covered OC courthouses for nearly two decades and I've watched juries here allow sick, twisted cops get away with outrageous crimes.  

fc2479
fc2479

Maybe as a JOURNALIST, you should try to walk in the shoes of law enforcement.  As unappealing as it might be. See both sides before you publish your hate and one sided stories.  Citizens should be given both sides so they can make their determinations.  Painting all cops as badge carrying thugs is not what a real journalist should do.  Whether or not our society is civilized or not is not yours to decide.  Just do your job and report both sides without your opinion, thank you.   

rscottmoxley
rscottmoxley topcommenter

@fc2479 True, I am a veteran, courthouse journalist and I do thoroughly explore all sides, but I'm not going to mislead or lie to my readers. (Go to the Orange County Register for those mindless reports.) Fullerton cops unnecessarily instigated this killing, savagely pummeled an unarmed Kelly Thomas and now want a jury and the public to believe defense lawyer concoctions that paramedics killed him or he killed himself. I don't know what world you occupy, but in a civilized nation, this man's death should have never happened. If you disagree, I'll live. I cover crime daily. I know the extent of nutty, callous freaks all over Southern California. But I will not suspend reality and common sense for a bunch of punk thugs with badges--even ones whose police unions can afford to pay extraordinary hourly fees to clever criminal defense lawyers known to invent laughable justifications for excessive or lethal government force.

fc2479
fc2479

It's really interesting how you resort to name calling when you don't get your way....kinda like the child you are....

fc2479
fc2479

The truth as you see it and as how you decide to bend things...just cause you write it doesn't mean it's the truth.  Well as a citizen of this great country I a have a right to my opinion and I say NOT GUILTY!!!  If I was on that jury that's what I would vote.  Hopefully at least one of those jurors shares my view. So if you don't like my opinion, deal with it.....

GustavoArellano
GustavoArellano moderator editortopcommenter

@fc2479 As journalists, we're supposed to write the truth and call out dipshit apologists such as yourself—and guess what we just did?

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