President of NBA Puts Call Out for Court Support in Alesia Thomas Case

We’re not against the police. We’re not against the police department, but we are against police who commit misconduct (and those who help cover it up).


LAPD Officer Mary O’Callaghan


The National Bar Association’s (NBA) incoming President Benjamin Crump has put out a call to those concerned with police abuse, killings and brutality in Los Angeles to join him Thursday, July 23 at 8:30 a.m. at the Los Angeles County Criminal Courts Building for the sentencing of Los Angeles Police Officer Mary O’Callaghan. The NBA is the nation’s oldest and largest national association of predominantly African-American lawyers, judges, educators and law students. Attorney Crump is representing the family in their federal civil rights lawsuit.

O’Callaghan was found guilty of felony assault in the 2012 arrest of Alesia Thomas after a jury reached its verdict after two days of deliberations. She had pleaded not guilty to assault under color of authority.

Officers went to arrest Thomas at her home after she left her two children outside a police station.

A dashboard camera in a police cruiser captured Officer O’Callaghan kicking the handcuffed Thomas in the backseat seven times in the groin, abdomen and upper thigh, prosecutors said. Thomas lost consciousness and was pronounced dead at a hospital.

An autopsy found Thomas had cocaine in her system, but the cause of death was listed as undetermined because the struggle couldn’t be excluded as a contributing factor. There were no internal injuries or bruising.

Officer O’Callaghan’s attorney said she never had a complaint against her upheld during her 19 years on the force and had an exemplary record.

O’Callaghan faces a sentence that could range from probation to up to three years behind bars.

The community is asked to gather at Los Angeles Criminal Courts Building on Thursday, July 23 at 8:30 a.m. to stand in support of Alesia Thomas’ family and to help make a statement that probation isn’t acceptable for Officer O’Callaghan who many feel should have been charged with felony murder. The NBA reminds those coming to court to avoid any unnecessary interactions with the police by making sure to bring as less as possible into the courthouse.

Thursday, July 23, 2015
8:30 a.m. sharp!
Los Angeles County Criminal Courts Building
210 West Temple Street
Downtown Los Angeles
Department 108
Judge Sam Ohta

The Court of Public Opinion

  • OK, if this were not a police officer a cop, but was instead a black or Hispanic teenager, with NO prior criminal history, I GUARANTEE you it would be a prison term of at lest 10 years, as there was a death involved, even if unintentional. I will go on record and state this woman will receive PROBTION plus the max of ONE yea in County, And one year in County is in reality only 6 months due to 4019 credits, BUT LA County is still over crowded and one year in County really means only 3-4 weeks MAX. Mark my words, she ill get a softball sentence of one County year and be out within 3-4 weeks, max.

  • robert peel

    what i find hard to accept is that there were supervisors on scene yet no charges,in other cases like this the capt gets into trouble but not in this case .

  • Police misconduct rarely results in discipline. Unless there is videotape it would never, in a million years, get charges filed.

  • Jasmyne, please post on this blog the second you hear what the sentence on Thursday is for LAPD Officer (former) Mary O’Callaghan . I am going on the record right now saying it will be one year, max, in County. I have a $20 spot, anyone want to take that action?? I’m good for it!

  • I am telling you, if it was a poor black or brown kid it would be 15-life.

  • robert peel

    surf i like your comments but why would a black or brown teenager be kicking a handcuffed female in the back of a car you have to kept everything in context .up to the point of the officer losing her cool everything was legal .weak supervision caused this to happen some supervisors probably felt a bit intimidated by her even prior to this incident.


    This was no shock to anyone who worked Southeast. There’s a culture of corruption there. Why did the media drop the command-condoned destruction of the dash cams, and the evidence that the former captain and deputy chief covered it all up?

  • robert peel

    when did the culture of corruption start because it wasnt like that years ago

  • I did not mean to infer that anyone, including black, brown or anyone else would be more likely to be kicking someone or engaging in criminal conduct. I was just commenting that poor kids, which are mainly minority, would receive a much longer, stiffer sentence than a female cop at LAPD for similar conduct. Poor whites also face this problem, but to a lessor extent. We have a very exposed double standard in our criminal, and civil, justice systems. They are weighted towards those with $$ and connections, and the poor receive disproportionate/unequal treatment, and the poor are for the most part mainly people of color.

  • robert peel

    i understand that but every case has to be looked at seperately.some police brutality are wrong from the outset.this detention was legal until she lost her cool and kicked her however what she did was brutal and deserves prison

  • Just in (and yes, I called it 100%, less than a year in County). From LA Times today;

    “A Los Angeles police officer was sentenced to 36 months in jail Thursday for assaulting a South L.A. woman in an incident that was caught on video by a police cruiser camera.

    Mary O’Callaghan’s sentencing comes amid intense scrutiny and criticism nationwide of police use of force. The last 20 months of her sentence were suspended, meaning she’ll likely spend a little more than a year in county jail.

    So basically 2/3 of her sentence was “suspended”. Of course this only happens to those who are favored, as in connected in, or have $$$$. If these charges are a “serious” or “violent” felony she must serve her time in the state prison system, but I am unsure if her charges carry this classification. Anyone know for sure?
    To be very honest, if this was anyone besides a cop, besides O’Callaghan, it would have been a manslaughter beef all the way.

  • Tricky Ricky

    This and the Lakers wearing “Hands up don’t shoot” shirts are the reasons why I no longer watch NBA Basketball! We watch them for their athletic ability. I don’t give a damn about their screwed up political views!

  • Cameras, not guns

    Bingo! That is why police officers across the county are resisting wearing body cams. (And those that do, turn them off when they use force or lose the tape.)

  • Julia

    This is so heartbreaking. Ms. Thomas realized that she couldn’t take care of her children so she dropped them off at the police station. She was being arrested for child abandonment when they killed her. Coroner should be fired if he/she can’t tell what the cause of death is. I think it’s a cover up.