Los Angeles police officer Mary O’Callaghan, 50, who was captured on her dashcam beating a handcuffed and leg-shackled Alesia Thomas, 35, in the back of her patrol car in 2012, until she eventually succumbed to the beating and died – will serve only 16 months behind bars for the death.
In the video, Thomas is seen handcuffed with her legs tied with a nylon hobble restraint. O’Callaghan then jabs her in the throat before threatening to “punt” her in the groin. The officer then raised up her boot and kicked her so hard that the woman’s body shook and trembled in response.
During the haunting video of this savage assault, Thomas is seen looking wide-eyed into the camera and saying, ” I cant.”
A few minutes after the attack, Thomas’ eyes closed and her head fell back, the officer’s body camera then shuts off. A dashcam from another police car caught O’Callaghan looking into the car where Thomas had been placed after lighting a cigarette and stating- “That ain’t a good sign.”
Thomas was pronounced dead at the hospital. Cocaine was found present, and the autopsy determined that may have been a factor in her death, but the cause was officially ruled “undetermined.”
Lawyers for the officer argued in court that the assault was “reasonable, justified and necessary,” although they admitted that it was an “ugly scene.”
In June, LAPD officer O’Callaghan was convicted of felony assault under the color of authority after two days of deliberation. She was never charged for Thomas’ death.
On Thursday, the officer was sentenced to 36 months in jail, which is the maximum she could receive. However, the last 20 months of her sentence are suspended, meaning she will only have to serve 16 months in jail for her role in the woman’s death.
She has also been relived of her duties at the Los Angeles Police Department without pay.