Me and My Nine Iron

September 21, 2011

Case updates


In the fatal officer-involved beating in Fullerton, charges were handed down on Tuesday, resulting in one count each of murder and involuntary manslaughter for Officer Manuel Ramos and one count each of involuntary manslaughter and excessive force for Officer Jay Cicinelli. It was a mixed finding for the obvious beating of homeless man Kelly Thomas, as murder charges are hard to come by even in obvious officer-involved excessive force cases, and a better start than the infamous BART officer who got away with an involuntary manslaughter charge and two years for the fatal shooting of a subdued man in 2009. I wouldn’t go so far as to say you “feel fantastic,” as Thomas’ father did.

Two things bothered me about this case, however. As I watched Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas release the findings at the news conference, he made this interesting statement but didn’t further elaborate, “Police officers have a right to use reasonable force in the performance of a lawful duty but citizens have a right to self-defense, even against the police.”

What could we possibly do to defend ourselves? Is he implying that we trade blows with an armed cop? Whichever avenue you decide to take, the result would seemingly be the same if up against a determined officer as Officer Ramos was – beaten to death.

The other part I question is whether Officer Cicinelli should’ve even been on the force. In 1996, he lost an eye from being shot on duty. First of all, I didn’t know you could serve in law enforcement without an eye. I know the guidelines aren’t as stringent as the military’s, but losing an eye is a pretty big deal. You don’t think he was waiting for a moment to unload on someone? I’m sure he was mentally fucked in the head to want to exact revenge on anyone.

Hopefully, these two get the maximum sentence, which is 15 to life and 4 years, respectively.

I’m all for the death penalty, if it wasn’t so prolonged and expensive. How in the world is killing someone more expensive than life in prison? Give the man a quick trial, and put the poison in him in less than a year. But capital punishment should also be reserved for cases where there’s no doubt in anyone’s mind that the killer did it, like a public mass shooting. They also need to eliminate automatic death for police killers. Especially with the story above, they don’t need to be held in the highest regard as far as the penalty phase goes.

In the case of Troy Davis, there are so many conflicting accounts that to kill the man with so much doubt would be downright stupid. Yes, he could’ve done it, and after my review of the case, he’s likely one of two people who did do it. But you know the police fudged the investigation, willing to take down anyone even if it’s the wrong person, to avenge one of their own. In my mind, it very easily could’ve been Sylvester Coles, who was the owner of the .38 pistol and was at the scene of the crime, but he wasn’t even questioned.

Again, a scary thing to hear the appeals court say was that Davis had not provided a “substantive claim” of innocence and that the recantations were unpersuasive. Yeah, he was already proven guilty in the original trial, but so much for “innocent until proven guilty” and shitty lawyers.

I can’t wait for new evidence to come up years from now that has everyone involved in this man’s death say, “Oh, fuck.”

In response to President Obama‘s proposed “Buffett Rule,” Rep. John Fleming went on the air and proved the disconnect that these rich politicians have with the regular, working class. He complained he only made $600,000 last year, and by the time he feeds his family, he’s only left with $400,000.

If he truly spends $200,000 a year on food, that might be as awesome of a statement as the rest of his nonsense. You can check out his interview here.

BJ

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6 Comments »

  1. A good exception, Ja-Hon, but look at how he received a special request from the FBI director and met the FBI’s standards, something Cicinelli didn’t have to endure. Isn’t it funny an officer carries more weapons?

    Also, a distinguishing factor might be who shot both of them. Norris was shot by a Vietnamese in war while Cicinelli was shot by “one of his own.”

    Comment by Bryan Jeon — September 22, 2011 @ 11:52 am | Reply

    • Actually, Cicinelli did go through the standards and had to pass them via lateral transfer because it is just like applying for any other law enforcement agency in California under Peace Officer Safety Training [POST] regulations. So he did earn his keep in that sense. And I’m actually not sure by what you are referring to when you say “isn’t it funny an officer carries more weapons?”. Could you elaborate for me further, please?

      Also, Norris was contacted directly by the Dir. of the FBI at the time because he had the MOH, already, and it was just that Norris at the point wasn’t just another nobody or even another nameless SEAL among other SpecOps in a huge war. He was and still is a national hero listed in a permanent registry that has a very short list with an even shorter, incrementally small list of surviving recipients.

      Comment by Ja-Hon Suh — September 22, 2011 @ 1:56 pm | Reply

      • Officers carry more weapons [on duty]. i.e. gun, taser, baton, secondary gun, etc.

        What does Rackauckas suggest we do against them in self-defense?

        Comment by Bryan Jeon — September 22, 2011 @ 2:22 pm

  2. “The other part I question is whether Officer Cicinelli should’ve even been on the force. In 1996, he lost an eye from being shot on duty. First of all, I didn’t know you could serve in law enforcement without an eye. I know the guidelines aren’t as stringent as the military’s, but losing an eye is a pretty big deal. You don’t think he was waiting for a moment to unload on someone? I’m sure he was mentally fucked in the head to want to exact revenge on anyone.”

    Losing an eye is a very big deal, but he lateral transferred to Fullerton PD and according to THEIR standards, he made the cut. Did you know that Thomas Norris (wikipedia him), earned the Medal of Honor in Vietnam War as a Navy SEAL and he was shot in the head and also lost an eye. After he was rehabilitated, he joined the FBI after getting a personal waiver from the Director of the FBI at that time as long as he passed the same standards as any other Special Agent, and he did. He went on to become one of the founding operators of the FBI’s cream of the crop Hostage Rescue Team (HRT).

    Comment by Ja-Hon Suh — September 22, 2011 @ 2:56 am | Reply

  3. http://rombachan721.id.st/ Thanks for that awesome posting. It saved MUCH time 🙂

    Comment by cliquer ici — September 22, 2011 @ 12:17 am | Reply

  4. BREAKING: Fullerton Police Officer Manuel Ramos has been charged with murder in the beating death of homeless man Kelly Thomas opFullerton

    Comment by Pavilion N3330 Battery — September 21, 2011 @ 7:29 pm | Reply


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