September 21, 2011 | 12:03am
On the eve of the district attorney's announcement of its findings in the Kelly Thomas case, peopled packed Fullerton City Hall to let the council know, once again, their thoughts on Thomas' death, the police department and the city, in general.
Several people voiced their desires to recall Mayor Richard Jones, Mayor Pro Tem Don Bankhead and Councilman Pat McKinley, saying that the men's leadership in the wake of Thomas' death was insufficient. "It's time for you guys to be heros instead of zeros. You guys could say this thing is out of hand and step down," said Wiley Drake, a pastor from Buena Park, who spoke during the public comment time.
Fullerton resident Laura Stephens
said she was "totally against" the recall until tonight, when she heard what she described as the councilmen's "total disdain" for the citizens."Now, I can't sign those recall papers fast enough," Stephens said.
The recall table outside of the council meeting
Marisa Gerber/ OCweekly
Chris Thompson, one of the recall leaders, said he thinks Jones, Bankhead and McKinley are only days away from having their names on a ballot for a recall election. A recently launched website, however, opposes the recall. The site, which encourages people to vote no on the recall, spends a lot of time talking about Tony Bushala, who they describe as a "bully."
Like Drake, several people expressed frustration at the city's now-tainted reputation."I'm scared for this community. We need to heal," said Gudalupe Aparicio.
The crowd was abuzz over the D.A.'s upcoming announcement. A few minutes into the public comment segment, City Attorney Richard Jones explained to the audience that the D.A. would announce its findings tomorrow at a press conference.
Matthew Rowe, a Fullerton resident, turned to the television cameras and said, "I wanna address the D.A. We want to know that justice will be done. That justice in America is blind." During the meeting, Mayor Jones asked Thomas if he wanted to meet Wednesday to chat, but Thomas reminded him that he'd be tied up all day with the press conference. The two men agreed to meet Thursday morning, Thomas said, and they plan to discuss the severity of Kelly's injuries.