More than a dozen people were arrested Saturday protesting the acquittal of police officers accused of beating a homeless man to death.
Hundreds of people took to the streets in Fullerton, California to protest the not guilty verdict but things took a turn for the worse after a local television crew was assaulted – that’s when police busted up the demonstration by arresting 13 people.
Fullerton Police, the target of the protests, moved in donning riot gear and ordered the crowd to disperse. Those who didn’t were taken away by force.
The 10 people who failed to comply were arrested, as well as the woman who assaulted the camera crew and two others for scrawling obscenities and anarchist graffiti on police property.
The FBI is now investigating the evidence in the case to see if any federal laws were broken, according to KTLA.
The demonstrators were incensed by the acquittals of Manuel Ramos and Jay Cicinelli, who were charged with the 2011 death of 37-year-old Kelly Thomas, a homeless man who died at a hospital five days after a violent struggle with police that was captured on videotape.
The acquittals came despite what appeared to be damning footage of the officers continuing to beat Thomas as he screamed out for his father 30 times, begged for air and apologized.
Ramos was the first officer in Orange County ever charged with murder while on duty.
Former Fullerton police officer Manuel Ramos was acquitted of second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter. Former Cpl. Jay Cicinelli was acquitted of involuntary manslaughter and excessive use of force.
Thomas, 37, had a history of run-ins with police before the July 2011 confrontation.
His father, Ron Thomas, said his son suffered from schizophrenia and didn’t understand the orders from police.
Prosecutors relied on grainy surveillance video at trial to show Thomas being struck, shocked by stun guns and restrained by officers.
The 33-minute video showed six officers striking Thomas with their fists and knees, and shocking him with a Taser as he cried out for his father.
A county pathologist concluded that Thomas died, in part, from a lack of oxygen to the brain caused by injuries received during the confrontation.
Outside court, Thomas’s parents condemned the verdict.
‘Just horrified,’ Cathy Thomas said. ‘He got away with murdering my son. It’s just not fair. So I guess it’s legal to go out and kill now. He was so innocent. It just isn’t fair at all.’