Vigil for Kelly Thomas on 2nd Anniversary of His Death - New York News

Vigil for Kelly Thomas on 2nd Anniversary of His Death

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Candles and flowers now mark the spot where Kelly Thomas was brutally beaten by Fullerton Police officers two years ago.

 "It means a lot to me.  It means a lot to the family that you guys are sticking by our sides.  It means a lot to us," said the victim's mother, Cathy Thomas.

Dozens showed up at the vigil for Kelly Thomas, who was a known schizophrenic and homeless.

"Kelly was just an innocent person, just a citizen walking through a parking lot and for that he was murdered by the police," said the victim's father Ron Thomas.

Though officers were called because of a disturbance, Kelly Thomas was cleared of any wrong doing that night.

"This is probably the biggest nightmare of every parent of a child that has schizophrenia or a serious mental illness," said Nomi Lonky, a member of the

National Alliance of Mental Illness who was at the vigil to show her support.

Witnesses reported officers hit Thomas in the face and head repeatedly and tased him several times even though Thomas was complying with their commands.

The beating was also caught on camera, Kelly Thomas' pleas for help can be heard.  "That's really been eating at me a lot lately. It really hurts my heart to know how he died," said his mom Cathy.

Three officers are facing charges and community pressure has also led to other changes.  "We've done a lot of positive things, got policies and procedures changed here in Fullerton.  Personnel changed…" said Ron Thomas.  But Ron adds, there's still a long way to go in his fight.

One of the former Fullerton police officers facing charges in this case is still in the process of appealing his case. The other two officers charged are scheduled to begin their trial in October.

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