Manuel Anthony Ramos, a ten-year veteran of the Fullerton Police Department, will be the first Orange County police officer to stand trial on a murder charge for his actions while in uniform. A judge ruled today that enough evidence of a crime was presented at a preliminary hearing for Ramos, 38, to face trial on charges of second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter. He is free on $1 million bail. Cpl. Jay Patrick Cicinelli will go to trial on charges of involuntary manslaughter and excessive force under color of authority, the judge ruled. Cicinelli, 40, is free on $25,000 bail.
Thomas, a 37-year-old homeless man with a history of mental issues who was known to many in Fullerton, died after being confronted by Fullerton police and beaten. A graphic video showing the encounter, with Thomas' pleas for his father to come help him, was played in court.