Fullerton must turn over portions of the personnel files of two former officers charged in the death of Kelly Thomas after losing an appeal to keep details of the police department's investigation into the incident private.
The Fourth District Court of Appeal on Tuesday upheld a judge's decision to release the confidential files.
The Orange County district attorney's office filed a motion to view the files for Manual Ramos and Jay Cicinelli to rebut a Fullerton police officer’s testimony that he saw no department violations in the video of the officers' clash with Thomas in 2011.
"The people have a good faith belief that the administrative records will contain evidence of violations of departmental policy," wrote Keith Bogardus, senior deputy district attorney, in a motion.
Ramos is charged with second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter; Cicinelli is charged with involuntary manslaughter and excessive use of force.
Thomas, who was taken off life support, died five days after his struggle with police. After the incident, the Fullerton police chief left the department and three of five city council members were recalled.