LAPD investigates woman’s in-custody death

Amy Powell (KABC) | August 30, 2012

SOUTH LOS ANGELES — Just one day after police officers were disciplined in an alleged use of force incident, the Los Angeles Police Department has a woman’s in-custody death investigation on its hands.

LAPD officers went to an apartment building on the 9000 block of Broadway on July 22 after two children were found abandoned at a police station.

A neighbor says he saw two LAPD officers struggle with the children’s mother, 35-year-old Alesia Thomas, outside her apartment.

The LAPD claims Thomas continued to resist arrest outside. Additional officers arrived and one officer took her to the ground to gain control of her. According to the Los Angeles Times, a female officer threatened to kick Thomas in the genitals if she did not cooperate and allegedly followed through on the threat. Thomas was handcuffed and placed in a squad car.

Authorities say that’s when the officers noticed Thomas wasn’t breathing and paramedics were called. Thomas died at a hospital.

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