The Orange County Sheriff-Coroner’s Office finished the autopsy of mentally ill transient Kelly Thomas and sent a report to District Attorney Tony Rackauckas Tuesday, according to a statement from sheriff’s spokesman Jim Amormino.
Rackauckas has called a news conference for 11 a.m. Wednesday to announce whether he will file any charges in the case.
Thomas, 37, died July 10, five days after a violent confrontation with six police officers at the Fullerton bus station. Medical records released by the family’s lawyer, Garo Mardirossian, showed Thomas had stopped breathing and had to be resuscitated after blood from head injuries entered his lungs.
Thomas is heard on a video made by a bystander screaming, “I can’t breathe. I can’t breathe.”
Mardirossian said the records showed Thomas was declared brain dead July 10 because of the injuries he received. The family has worked to keep the issue before the public. Kelly Thomas’ father, Ron Thomas, has expressed fears that without public pressure, law enforcement authorities won’t prosecute any of the police officers responsible.
“The Orange County Sheriff-Coroner has completed the medical legal investigation into the Kelly Thomas case,” read a statement from Amormino. “The findings have been turned over to the district attorney’s office for review.”
— TRACY WOOD