Hmmm, the national news media did not show all of the video, to wit, the part unfavorable to King.
Hmmm, there seem to be different versions of what happened before George Zimmerman shot Trayon Martin.
Hmmm, I wish you had not sent this to me, but I figure you can plead the angels made you do it.
Mmmm, maybe not a good sign for my theory that a non-white jury not convicting Zimmerman would stop what happened in L.A., but more widespread.
Los Angeles (CNN)– Rodney King, whose beating by Los Angeles police in 1991 was caught on camera and sparked riots after the acquittal of the four officers involved, was found dead in his swimming pool Sunday, authorities and his fiancee said. He was 47.
Police in Rialto, California, received a 911 call from King’s fiancee, Cynthia Kelly, about 5:25 a.m., said Capt. Randy DeAnda. Responding officers found King at the bottom of the pool, removed him and attempted to revive him. He was pronounced dead at a local hospital, DeAnda said.
There were no preliminary signs of foul play, he said, and no obvious injuries on King’s body. Police are conducting a drowning investigation, DeAnda said, and King’s body would be autopsied.”His fiancee heard him in the rear yard,” he said, and found King in the pool when she went outside.Kelly was a juror in King’s lawsuit against the city of Los Angeles in 1994.
Rodney King’s legacy
2011: King a symbol of police brutality
2011: Rodney King, 20 years later
2011: Rodney King’s nightmare
King’s beating after a high-speed car chase and its aftermath forever changed Los Angeles, its police department and the dialogue on race in America.
“Rodney King was a symbol of civil rights and he represented the anti-police brutality and anti-racial profiling movement of our time,” the Rev. Al Sharpton said in a statement. “It was his beating that made America focus on the presence of profiling and police misconduct.”
King was 25 and on parole after a robbery conviction in March 1991. In an interview in 2011, he recalled he had been drinking and was headed home from a friend’s house when he saw a police car following him and panicked, thinking he would be sent back to prison. So he attempted to flee.
“I had a job to go to that Monday, and I knew I was on parole, and I knew I wasn’t supposed to be drinking, and I’m like ‘Oh, my God,’” he told CNN.
Related: Rodney King looks back without anger
He realized he couldn’t outrun the police, but looked for a public place to stop. “I saw all those apartments over there, so I said, ‘I’m gonna stop right there,’” he said. “‘If it goes down, somebody will see it.’”
An amateur cameraman caught the scene as four white police officers struck King more than 50 times with their wooden batons and used a stun gun on him.
King said as the officers beat him, they yelled, “We are going to kill you, n***er,” although the officers denied using racial slurs.
The video shows King cowering on the ground and attempting to crawl away as he is surrounded by a crowd of police officers. Four of them used their nightsticks to strike him.
King was beaten nearly to death. Three surgeons operated on him for five hours.
The video of the beating appeared on national television two days later, focusing attention on the issue of racially-motivated police brutality.
“We finally caught the Loch Ness Monster with a camcorder,” King attorney Milton Grimes said.
Four LAPD officers — Theodore Briseno, Laurence Powell, Timothy Wind and Sgt. Stacey Koon — were indicted on charges of assault with a deadly weapon and excessive use of force by a police officer.
But following a three-month trial in the predominantly white Los Angeles suburb of Simi Valley, three of the officers were acquitted of all charges. The jury, which had all white members, deadlocked on one charge of excessive force against Powell, and a mistrial was declared on that charge.
Powell’s attorney, Michael Stone, said earlier this year the unedited video worked against King and helped prove the officers’ case.
Rodney King remembers the L.A. riots
Los Angeles riots: 20 years later
King writes memoir sharing his story
Rodney King on getting beyond race
“Most of the nation only saw a few snippets where it’s the most violent,” Stone said. “They didn’t see (King) get up and run at Powell.”
But African-Americans in Los Angeles exploded in outrage. Rioters ran through the streets — looting businesses, torching buildings and attacking those who were in the wrong place at the wrong time. The violence was responsible for more than 50 deaths and $1 billion in property damage.
On the third day of rioting, King emerged from seclusion to make a plea: “People, I just want to say, can we all get along? Can we get along?”
The violence ceased, but the debate did not.
Nearly a year later, the four officers stood trial in federal court on civil rights charges. Two African-Americans were picked for the jury, and King testified. He hedged, however, on whether police used racial slurs during the beating. He told CNN in 2011 that slurs were used, but said he vacillated on the stand because his mother had told him to avoid talking about race.
Koon and Powell were found guilty and sentenced to 30 months in prison. Briseno and Wind were acquitted.
“It was like … I just hope we just get one,” King said. “I hope we just get one on that. If we get one, we’re good. So to get the two, I was really happy.”
King also sued the city of Los Angeles.
“Half of them had no sympathy whatsoever,” Kelly, his fiancee, told CNN earlier this year about her fellow jurors. “… They just didn’t care. Like, ‘He broke the law. He deserved what he got.’ I told them they were crazy. It was about justice for what happened to him. No one deserves to get beat like that.”
The other jurors came around, and King was awarded $3.8 million in damages.
In later years, King had several more run-ins with the law, including a 90-day jail stint in 1996 for a hit-and-run involving his wife at the time. On the 20th anniversary of the beating in 2011, he was pulled over and ticketed for a minor traffic violation.
“The trouble that (people) see me in is a part of my life that I’m working on,” he said in 2011. “I’ll always have an issue when it comes to alcohol. My dad was an alcoholic. The addiction part is in my blood. What I’ve learned to do is arrest my addiction — arrest it myself, so I don’t get arrested.”
In 2008, King appeared on the VH1 reality show “Celebrity Rehab.” He also released a memoir, “The Riot Within,” in which he describes his difficult upbringing and his reflections on the beating and its aftermath.
The ranks of Los Angeles police are much more diverse than they were at the time of King’s beating. Changes have also been made — some compelled by the courts — in the way certain neighborhoods are patrolled and how complaints are handled.
Sharpton said in his statement Sunday that he had recently spent time with King discussing the release of his book.
“Through all that he had gone through with his beating and personal demons, he was never one to not call for reconciliation and for his people to overcome and forgive,” Sharpton said.
King said earlier this year he has forgiven the officers who beat him.
“Yes, I’ve forgiven them, because I’ve been forgiven many times,” he said. “My country’s been good to me … This country is my house, it’s the only home I know, so I have to be able to forgive — for the future, for the younger generation coming behind me, so … they can understand it and if a situation like that happened again, they could deal with it a lot easier.”
What this article says Rodney King did reminds me of what Martin Luther King preached, and what my beloved black mammy told blacks to do during the time of troubles in Birmingham. To be patient with and love their white brothers and sisters. Hers is the second portrait in A Few Remarkable (Birmingham) People I Have Known, found in the right-hand menu of goodmorningbirmingham.com.
I replied to J:
Maybe if Zimmerman is not convicted, Trayvon Martin’s parents will call for non-violence. Maybe they will call for it now. Why haven’t they called for it already? Why hasn’t Al Sharpton called for non-violence already? Why haven’t Jesse Jackson, Attorney General Holder and President Obama not called for non-violence already?
Really now! You know the answer to your question.
They do not call for non-violence because Sharpton, Jackson, Holder, Obama secretly all WANT violence, particularly if they can get it before the election to stir up the voting base. AND, at least Jackson and Sharpton need for there to be violence so that they can continue to raise money and keep their fear mongering – race bating business going – they don’t want to get a real job.
LA was 50 people killed and 1 Billion dollars of damage – wonder what it will be this time?
My questions were somewhat facetious. Can’t imagine any of the four black notables wanting black violence for any reason, especially not before the election, which very well could create a white stampede to Romney.
My sense is, what’s in play here is generations old, dating back to before The Declaration of Independence. Like Jews, African peoples experienced terrible things at the hands of White Supremacists. It’s in their souls and it runs many black Americans and sets them up for volatile reaction to anything that triggers those very old and deep terrors and hatreds.
That is not an excuse for black violence in situations like Rodney King or Trayvon Martin, but it explains it to me. I hope Rodney King’s passing and the far more balanced Rodney King media coverage today will sink into the souls of likes of the four black notables and many more blacks. Not holding my breath, but perhaps blacks should consider there are plenty of White Supremacists in America who just might be willing to meet them on a battlefield neither side will end up liking.
That scenario, and riots like what followed Rodney King’s apprehension and Trayvon Martin’s death, keep bringing me back around to the idea what the time may well come when whoever is Potus will have to order the troops home to protect Americans from Americans. The four notables would do well to ponder that not entirely unlikely scenario.
Interesting, Rodney and ML shared the same last name.
Running parallel, this borrowed editorial in The Key West Citizen today:
Stand your ground law: confusion, disparity
It’s a good thing that Lt. Gov.
Jennifer Carroll has an open mind about her task force’s examination of Florida’s controversial Stand Your Ground Law. There appear to be an awful lot of problems with the state’s expansive self-defense statute.
An analysis of almost 200 Stand Your Ground cases by the Tampa Bay Times, St. Petersburg, found widespread confusion and disparity in the way the law has been applied and interpreted. Among the findings: The number of Stand Your Ground cases is increasing, the Times reported, largely because defense attorneys are using the 2005 law “in ways legislators never envisioned.” The protection has been invoked in dozens of cases with minor or no injuries.
Many successful cases “seem to make a mockery of what lawmakers intended,” the Times said. A man went free after killing two unarmed people. Another shot a man lying on the ground. Others went free after shooting victims in the back. “Similar cases have opposite outcomes,” the analysis concluded. Some drug dealers citing self-defense went to prison, while other went free. Some killers who left a fight and returned armed were convicted; others weren’t. One man lost his claim of self-defense because the victim was walking away. The court concluded “that immunity does not apply because the victim was retreating.” In another, similar case, a court granted immunity to a shooter, saying, “The statute makes no exception from immunity when the victim is retreating.”
Differing interpretations of Stand Your Ground were at the heart of the case that spawned the current controversy: the February shooting death of17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Sanford. Martin was killed by a neighborhood watch volunteer, George Zimmerman, who had been following him. Zimmerman later told police he fired his gun in self-defense after Martin attacked him. Sanford police cited the Stand Your Ground Law in releasing Zimmerman without charges; the local state attorney also declined to bring charges.Amid nationwide outrage and protests, Gov. Rick Scott appointed a special prosecutor, the state attorney from the Jacksonville district, who eventually charged Zimmerman with second-degree murder. He is now awaiting trial.
Lt. Gov. Carroll, who is chairing a task force that Scott appointed to examine the state’s gun laws — including Stand Your Ground — has discovered that such disparities in interpreting the statute are widespread. The task force’s organizational meeting in May raised “many, many questions” about the law, Carroll told the Times. “When we heard from sheriffs, they had problems, and when we heard from defense and prosecuting attorneys, they had problems,” Carroll said. “From judges we heard that there have been cases we need to look at and get an understanding of how the courts have ruled.”
The comments by Carroll, who voted for Stand Your Ground as a Republican member of the Florida House, offer encouragement that the task force’s inquiry will not be a whitewash of the controversy but lead to useful recommendations to the Legislature for changes in the law. One possible change might involve denying self-defense immunity to anyone who initiates a confrontation. Durell Peaden, a former Republican legislator who sponsored the Stand Your Ground bill in the state Senate, told the Times that it was never intended to protect those who put themselves in harm’s way before shooting.
The remarks by Carroll and Peaden, however, stand in contrast to those of another task force member, state Rep. Dennis Baxley, who sponsored the bill in the Florida House. He said Monday that it’s “premature” to predict that changes are necessary. “I think there’s more data to come about the positive aspects of the statute as it exists.”
We hope other members of the task force share the concerns voiced by Carroll and Peaden as well as numerous officials in the law enforcement and judicial systems. The Stand Your Ground Law was intended to protect the innocent, not to create confusion that might allow the guilty to escape punishment.
— The Lakeland Ledger
As I read the above, the thought came to me that the Florida Stand Your Ground law is unconstitutional because it is open to different interpretations/applications by different trial judges, violating equal protection under the law. I am not positive about this, but I believe there might be a procedure whereby the Florida Supreme Court, on its own motion, can initiate a legal proceeding to determine the constitutionality of the Florida Stand Your Ground Law. The United States Supreme Court did much the same when, on its own motion, it took jurisdiction of the contested 2000 presidential election voting in Florida away from the Florida Supreme Court and gave the White House to G.W. Bush.
Lt. Governor Carroll is black and, if memory serves me, supported the Stand Your Ground Law when it was passed, and maybe even co-sponsored it. I wonder how she really feels about her handiwork now. I am pretty sure I know how Trayvon Martin and his parents feel about it.