Below Is A City News Service Article About The Kelly Thomas Murder Trial And Specifically The Testimony Of One Fullerton Police Department (FPD) Training Officer Steven Rubio With My Comments As Well. By Barry Levinson


(click the image below and go to 4 minutes and 10 seconds into the meeting)
  
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PUBLISHED:  | UPDATED: 

“SANTA ANA — A corporal who trained two officers on trial in the fatal beating of a homeless man in Fullerton testified today that they acted mostly within the city’s policy when they dealt with the suspect.

Cpl. Stephen Rubio testified that ex-Officer Manuel Ramos may have strayed from policy when he used profanity as he spoke with Kelly Thomas prior to the deadly struggle at the Fullerton Transportation Center on July 5, 2011, but otherwise acted properly. 

Rubio added that ex-Cpl. Jay Cicinelli used his stun gun properly, including when he deployed it as an “improvisational tool” for punching the transient in the head.

“In the video, I honestly don’t see anything out of policy there,” Rubio said when discussing Cicinelli striking Thomas with the butt of the gun.

Cicinelli was trained in how to keep a suspect from taking away his weapon, which defense attorneys claim Thomas was trying to do during the struggle, Rubio testified.

It wouldn’t be “practical” for Cicinelli to have discarded the weapon during the struggle if it wasn’t working because Thomas could have retrieved it, Rubio said. The “loud clacking” of the stun gun that can be heard on the video indicates it was not working as it should to subdue the suspect, he said.

When asked if Cicinelli was right to strike Thomas in the head with the stun gun, Rubio testified the police department’s policy “allows for the improvisation of a tool or weapon under certain circumstances.”

As for Ramos putting on latex gloves and then holding up his fists to Thomas before threatening to “(expletive) you up” if he didn’t follow orders, Rubio said the defendant properly used a “conditional threat.”

Rubio added, “The profanity is a little off color, a slight policy violation.”

 

Although the profanity was “unprofessional,” using the threat to avoid a physical fight was OK “for the greater good,” Rubio testified.

Assistant District Attorney Jim Tanizaki got Rubio to acknowledge that “improvised weapons” are OK under the department’s policy when “reasonable,” and that there’s an admonition against head strikes with an impact weapon.

Rubio also testified, under questioning by Tanizaki, that after the first deployment of a stun gun, a suspect must be given time to comply with orders because the immediate reaction to a Taser might be improperly construed as resistance.

When Tanizaki pressed Rubio on whether a suspect should be given more than one chance to comply, the corporal resisted.

Rubio testified that he recalled Cicinelli struck Thomas four to six times with the stun gun. But after he was shown the video in court, he revised his estimate to three times.

“I see his arm moving back in a circular motion, but I can’t tell if that’s a strike or not,” Rubio testified.

Officer Kenton Hampton can be seen on the video jumping away from the struggle, an “indication he got a bit of that Taser discharge,” Rubio testified.

Tanizaki questioned Rubio on whether Ramos’ threat to Thomas could be viewed as a provocative act.

“Do you agree words can foster and create an environment for confrontation?” the prosecutor asked.

“It’s possible,” Rubio responded.

Tanizaki also questioned Rubio about a part of the policy that discourages threats to mentally disabled suspects.

“With respect to individuals who are mentally disabled, aren’t you taught to avoid threats?” Tanizaki asked.

“Once again, it depends,” Rubio replied.

The prosecutor asked Rubio if he trained Ramos to not threaten mentally disabled suspects.

“I taught him to communicate with people effectively whether they were mentally ill or not,” Rubio said. “You try to treat everyone with calming language … That’s what we try to teach.”

Rubio also testified that blows to some parts of the head are less dangerous than others, and that the plastic stun gun would be “not as dangerous” as a police baton, or asp.

Retired FBI use-of-force expert John Wilson Jr. testified for the prosecution last week that Ramos and Cicinelli did not follow proper procedures. Wilson testified that Ramos “aggressively slapped” at Thomas and that he had reason to fear the police and run from them.

“I have problems with everything that happened after” Ramos put on the gloves and held up his fists to the homeless man, Wilson testified.

Wilson also testified that it was “not be good proper police procedure” for Cicinelli to strike Thomas with the butt of a stun gun.

Ramos is charged with second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter and Cicinelli is charged with involuntary manslaughter and excessive force.”

  1. #1 by Roger on February 27, 2018 - 8:17 am

    Thank you Barry. Well said.

  2. #2 by Sheena on February 27, 2018 - 10:54 am

    Kelly Thomas was murdered by the very people that were employed to protect him. It just goes to show you that the police do not protect us and its up to us to protect ourselves from them. That is why we need to keep our guns. I love Dana Loesch. She is so right on and brave.

  3. #3 by Barry Levinson on February 27, 2018 - 2:25 pm

    My hope Roger, Sheena and other followers of this site is that until Rubio and Craig are off the force, the claim that the FPD has been reformed should be laughed at by all Fullerton citizens.

    While the FPD and other Fullerton leaders on the dais claim that the FPD has been reformed, this happened to me just yesterday.

    I called the main number of the FPD. An officer or cadet by the name of Green answered the phone.

    I said I would like to know the name of the current FPD Trainer. He responded that there are several trainers.

    Okay I said then give me the name of all the current FPD trainers. After a long pause he said that he did not know if he was authorized to give out that information. I said should not the public have the right to know the name(s) of Fullerton police officers. Again a long pause…and then he said that it was a safely issue. I then startled Officer Green with my followup comment, which was the following. So Officer Green do you feel your safety is now in jeopardy since you gave me your name? Another pause, he did not answer my very simple and direct question but instead he said he would connect me to another station. An officer answered the phone who freely gave me his name as Joe Torres. I then asked Joe Torres who was the FPD trainer. Before he would answer my very simple and straight forward question, he asked me to identify myself. I then gave him my name, which I had no problem doing so. He then said that he was the FPD trainer. I said that Officer Green at the front desk told me there were several trainers which he reiterated that he was the only trainer for the FPD.

    So the next time anyone from the FPD or from the City Council states how transparent the FPD is, remember how difficult it is to get an answer to a very simple question such as who is the FPD trainer.

    Please note that I also went to the FPD website and clicked on their directory. The directory does not give the name of any FPD officers or other FPD employees, just phone numbers for different purposes. In fact the only FPD employees that are identified on the City of Fullerton website are the names of the Police Chief and the two Police Captains. Apparently, the FPD is so transparent, so open with nothing to hide that the other 200 plus FPD employees remain a secret from the public on their website.

  4. #4 by Danny and Pat on March 2, 2018 - 11:34 am

    You have to admit that Danny and Pat would have probably made great Nazi SS officers. For just like the SS elites, they too were proud of the men under them that murdered the innocent.

  5. #5 by Fullerton - The Most Corrupt City In California on March 3, 2018 - 10:38 am

    For Rubio as Training Officer to testify that the horrific beating of an innocent man that from start to finish the police were the physical and verbal aggressors was totally justified makes FPD Officer Steven Rubio a monster of epic proportions.

    Steven Rubio’s testimony at the Kelly Thomas trial should go down as one of the most corrupt and despicable court room behaviors by any law enforcement personnel giving sworn testimony as both a police officer in good standing and a police expert in the subject.

    His testimony should have resulted in perjury charges being filed by OCDA, Tony Rackauckas. He then should have been fired by the FPD Police Chief Danny Hughes. Neither of those two very proper acts ever happened.

    Danny Hughes a question for you sir. Since you came before the Fullerton City Council and proclaimed officially to all that Kelly Thomas was an innocent man the night of July 5, 2011; how could you not take any disciplinary action against your training officer, Corporal Steven Rubio after he claimed under oath before God that Cincinelli’s and Rubio’s actions followed FPD policies and procedures?

    By not taking any action, you are sending out the message to the good people of Fullerton and your personnel that gang beating an innocent man to death by your officers is totally within FPD Policies and Procedures and that sir makes you a monster as well.

    Shame on Tony Rackauckas and Danny Hughes for failing to do their jobs properly. Criminal behavior by law enforcement should not and can not be tolerated in a free society. In Orange County, The DA’s office time and time again in my opinion and many others has failed to apply the same standards to law enforcement personnel that they routinely apply to you and me. The justice system in America is broken. Let me repeat…. the justice system in America is broken because justice too often is not blind. If you are part of the system you get away with criminal behavior all the way up to murder and if you are not liked by the government establishment you can expect that establishment to try to mess with you up to and including framing you.

  6. #6 by Barry Levinson on March 3, 2018 - 1:28 pm

    Unfortunately, as long as we have corrupt Police Departments and corrupt DA’s, justice will only be something you read about in a fairytale.

    Did you read about the DROP Program in the City of LA. It was something approved many years ago to supposedly help retain both Police And Fireman. At the time there was absolutely no problem retaining firemen but whats good for goose is good fro the gander. The program allowed senior people to collect their pensions and still work and get paid full-time as well. In early 2016 the Mayor received a report that stated that at least 1,200 people on the program have stopped working altogether claiming bad backs and sore knees while not only collecting their regular pay but also their pensions. What a bunch of great civil servants! “To Serve and Protect Ourselves” should be written on every police car and fire truck in the City of LA. They get double pay and they thank the taxpayers by committed theft and fraud. 1,200 of them decide to do the false disability tango and get paid double for nothing. And guess what the LA Times has just reported that the Mayor and others in the City Government after reviewing this very troubling report of theft and fraud almost two years ago have done absolutely nothing, keeping it until now under complete wraps. I guess pretty soon Garcetti will be wanting a promotion to Governor or Senator. What a guy?

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