Rodney King was a man with a lot of demons, not the least of which were self-inflicted. In later years, King would be known for his stints on VH1 reality television shows alongside rockers like the late Jani Lane, but young King was known for one thing: the beating that kicked off riots around the United States. Rodney King, the LAPD beating victim whose attack started the LA Riots, is dead at age 47. King was found at the bottom of the swimming pool at his Rialto, California, home. Authorities believe the cause of death was drowning not related to drugs or alcohol.
On March 3, 1992, Rodney King led police on a high-speed 8-mile chase through the streets of Los Angeles; when cops finally got the car pulled over, King resisted arrest and at one point threw an officer off his back. Police then moved in, clubs at the ready, and gave King a ferocious beating. That beating, and the subsequent court verdict which freed the four white officers that beat him, kicked off the LA Riots. The riots lasted for 6 days, killed 53 people, and caused hundreds of millions of dollars in damages.
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