Antonio Thomas, a 39 year old Black Man from Citrus Heights was arrested on the 7th or 8th of December.
This information is still unclear because the family has not been provided the original reason for arrest by Citrus Heights Police, and detention by the Sacramento Sheriff's Department.
The mother of Antonio Thomas was contacted on December 10th, by The Sacramento Police Department and was told at that time that there was not a problem and that no one had been killed or hurt, they just needed to speak with her.
Antonio’s mother agreed to meet with the Sacramento Police Department.
Antonio’s Mother was informed that the Sacramento Sheriff's Department had found Antonio in his cell and he had been transported to UC Davis Medical Center where she was informed that she needed to visit him.
Speaking with witness who requested to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation, 8-9 SacPD officers surrounding the room of Antonio Thomas who was still being detained and restrained by handcuffs which were removed moments before Antonio’s mother arrived. Antonio's mother was informed by medical staff at UC Davis that Antonio was in a comma.
Antonio had sustained blunt force trauma to the head. Antonio's left side of his brain was no longer functioning and that this injury was not the result of the blunt force trauma to the head, instead this brain injury resulted from Antonio’s air passage being restricted for over three minutes. This type of injury and restriction of the air passage aligns with the use of an illegal police choke hold applied by an officer while Mr. Thomas was in custody.
It is unlikely that this injury was imposed by another person in the facility outside of an officer. Mr. Thomas’s previous history would have called for him to be isolated and monitored, restricting access from anyone outside of an officer. There were no other visible marks or sign of a struggle that would have suggested that Mr. Thomas was in a fight or had the opportunity to defend himself while his airway was being restricted. It is believed that Mr. Thomas was placed in an illegal police choke hold for over three minutes and the secondary head trauma was due to Antonio hitting his head when he was released by the officers.
It is unknown as to why the Sheriff's department who was the original party who found Mr. Thomas in the jail, did not themselves reach out to Antonio's Mother but instead had the Sacramento Police Department contact Antonio's family. As of yet the Sacramento Sheriff's Department and the Sacramento Police Department have failed to provide the original reason for arrest. They have failed to explain how Antonio sustained these injuries while in custody before the Sacramento Sheriff's department found Mr. Thomas unconscious.What we do know is the life of the 39 year old Antonio Thomas, and his family, have forever been changed by an interaction with the Sacramento Sheriff's department that has left Antonio Thomas with permanent brain damage and left Antonio's Mother in grief and asking a lot of questions about how Antonio could have possible ended up in this state while in custody.
Black Lives Matter Sacramento and Antonio's family, will be speaking with the media on Monday December 23rd 2019 at 11am.
Please come out and show your support to the family
event link: https://www.facebook.com/events/592537818163031/