Six police officers were needed to subdue one apparently unarmed homeless man? This puts the kill in overkill.
Published: Sept. 9, 2011 Updated: 2:47 p.m.
By LOU PONSI / THE ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER
Fullerton police chief extends medical leave
FULLERTON – Police Chief Michael Sellers has extended his medical leave for an additional 30 days, “pending further assessment,” City Manager Joe Felz said Friday.
Sellers, in the wake of the controversial death of Kelly Thomas, was placed on a 30-day medical leave by his physician during the first week of August.
Fullerton Police Chief Michael Sellers has extended his medical leave for another 30 days, City Manager Joe Felz said. Sellers took a medical leave in early August, in the midst of public outrage over the death of a mentally ill homeless man who was involved in a physical confronation with police officers.
LEONARD ORTIZ, THE ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER
MORE PHOTOS (To view a photo slide show on the incident, click here.)
State law prohibits giving details on the chief’s medical condition, Felz said.
Capt. Kevin Hamilton has been the acting chief since Sellers went on leave and will remain in that role, the city manager said.
“At some point, clearly, we will discuss all of our options,” Felz said. “It is too early to speculate on them.”
Thomas was suspected of burglarizing cars in the Fullerton Transportation Center on July 5 when approached by six officers. A physical confrontation ensued and Thomas died five days later at the University of California, Irvine Medical Center.
A lawyer for Ron Thomas, Kelly Thomas’ father, has said that officers administered a barrage of blows to the mentally ill homeless man, causing a broken nose and cheekbone and ultimately leading to brain death. Thomas was removed from life support on July 10.
(To visit a Register Web page devoted to the incident, click here.)
The office of Orange County’s coroner has not yet released toxicology reports or an official cause of death.
Council members Sharon Quirk-Silva and Bruce Whitaker have requested that Sellers resign, saying the chief should have taken a more-public role after the incident. Hundreds have showed up at City Council meetings expressing anger over the incident, with many calling for Sellers to step down.