Dear Madam Mayor & Council Members,
We cannot pretend that Fullerton is serious about reform when those involved in the murder of Kelly Thomas, the illegal arrest and imprisonment of Veth Mam, and the many other documented cases of police misconduct, are still employed by FPD. We contend that you as our representatives at city hall, now being fully aware of the extent of misconduct by certain officers, that it is your duty above all else to protect the citizens of Fullerton, including those that may now feel targeted because of their public involvement in seeking justice for Kelly Thomas. There will be members of the community who will not comply to the orders of Officer Kenton Hampton, Sgt. Kevin Craig and Cpl. James Blatney, as they feel that these officers do not hold any moral authority over them. This reality puts all residents and peace officers in danger, and makes any contact by these men with the general public unwise. The adoption of the attached resolution by you, and the eventually firing of any officer who cannot live up to the ideals of a post Kelly Thomas Fullerton Police Department, will not only benefit all residents of Fullerton, but it shall restore public faith in the department itself. In doing so you will stimulate public trust to the benefit to those other officers who have always conducted themselves professionally. Professional officers with good intentions deserve to work in an environment which is free of the stigma that the continued employment of these accomplices in a taped public execution places on the entire department.
Only by publically setting standards for peace officers which embody excellence in public service and respect for all Fullerton citizens, and by demanding the termination of all those who represent the worst of FPD’s past, can we move forward with confidently that reform and change has resulted from the tragic murder of Fullerton resident Kelly Thomas on July 5th, 2011. The city attorney, while perhaps well intentioned, has an established propensity to filter his advise through the fear that one of these subpar officers may litigate on grounds of wrongful termination. We advise this council to also consider what may result if any of the officers in question, who have now returned to active duty, are again involved the death or injury of one of our citizens. Prudence dictates that they must be removed before they are given another opportunity to harm the public and burden the city with additional million dollar settlements.
Civility and healing will come to Fullerton when our leaders are responsive to the public and we are not required to pry every hint of justice that this case has brought forth over the last 14 month from the clinched fists of a stubborn leadership at city hall, the DA’s office or FPD. Today we present you with yet another opportunity to partner with us in seeking justice. We urge you to take advantage of this opportunity.
Respectfully submitted by
Stephan Baxter, Fullerton CA