APNewsBreak: CA police officer charged with murder

By GILLIAN FLACCUS | September 21, 2011 | 1:55 PM EDT

SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) — A defense lawyer says a police officer has been charged with murder in the death of a mentally ill homeless man in Southern California.

Attorney John Barnett says his client, Fullerton police Officer Manuel Ramos, surrendered to authorities Wednesday and was being charged with second-degree murder.

The Orange County district attorney's office was set to announce the charge in the death of 37-year-old Kelly Thomas after a violent confrontation on July 5 with Fullerton officers.

Six officers were placed on paid administrative leave after the incident that occurred while police were investigating reported vehicle break-ins at a transit hub.

Thomas suffered severe head and neck injuries and was taken off life support five days later.