Rodney King

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Rodney King
King in 2012
Rodney Glen King

(1965-04-02)April 2, 1965
DiedJune 17, 2012(2012-06-17) (aged 47)
Cause of deathDrowning
Known forCriminal Brutality
Spouse(s)Crystal Waters (divorced),
Danetta King (divorced)
Partner(s)Cynthia Kelly (fiancée)
Children3 daughters

Rodney Glen King (April 2, 1965 - June 17, 2012)[1] was an African-American man who was beat up by police officers on camera in 1991. When a jury did not find the officers guilty of beating him up, large riots started in Los Angeles, California.[2]

Early and personal life[change | change source]

King was born in Sacramento, California to Odessa and Ronald King, who had four other children. His father was an alcoholic who died in 1984 aged 42. King grew up in Altadena, California.[3]

In November 1989, King robbed a store in Monterey Park, California. King was carrying an iron bar, which he threatened the Korean store owner with. He hit the owner and stole $200. He was convicted of robbery and sentenced to two years imprisonment. He was released after a year.[4]

Beating[change | change source]

On March 3, 1991, King was driving after drinking alcohol. Police officers tried to pull him over, but King would not stop. The officers chased him for miles. King finally stopped. One of the officers shot two electronic darts at King because they thought he might hurt them. King ran at one of the officers. The officers beat King while he was on the ground with a baton more than 50 times.[5]

A man named George Holliday, who lived nearby, saw what was going on. He used a camcorder to record a video of the beating. The video later went on television.[6]

Trial and riots[change | change source]

Of the four officers that went on trial for beating King, only one of them was found guilty by the state of California. With large public protest, rioting began in Los Angeles, during which more than 50 people were killed, thousands were hurt, and one billion dollars worth of property damage occurred.[7]

In a different trial, the United States government later found two of the officers guilty.

Death[change | change source]

King was found dead by his fiancée at the bottom of his swimming pool in the early morning hours of June 17, 2012 in Rialto, California. An autopsy was performed and the results said that King died of accidental drowning and that alcohol, cocaine, and marijuana were all found in his blood which were a contributing factor in his death.[8]

Related pages[change | change source]

References[change | change source]

  1. CNN Wire Staff (17 June 2012). "Rodney King dead at 47". CNN. Retrieved 17 June 2012. {{cite news}}: |author= has generic name (help)
  2. "Los Angeles riot still echoes a decade later - CNN". April 28, 2002. Archived from the original on February 18, 2012. Retrieved December 21, 2011.
  3. Telegraph obituary
  4. "Independent profile". Archived from the original on 2012-09-06. Retrieved 2017-08-31.
  5. Mangan, David (2000). "Police Brutality: The Use of Excessive Force'". Archived from the original on December 27, 2011. Retrieved December 21, 2011.
  6. Phillips-Sandy, Mary (March 3, 2011). "Rodney King Revisited: Meet George Holliday, the Man Who Shot the Infamous Video". Retrieved December 21, 2011.
  7. "Los Angeles Riots, 1992". Archived from the original on May 31, 2012. Retrieved December 21, 2011.
  8. "Police: Rodney King's 'accidental drowning' involved drugs". CNN. 23 August 2012. Retrieved 2012-12-31.