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Rodney King Case - Essay Example

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The Rodney King Case: Twenty Years Onwards [Author’s Name] [Institution] The Rodney King Case: Twenty Years Onwards It was 1991, and L.A. police chases were regularly televised. These usually ended when the bad guys were caught and it seemed that the policemen had saved the day again…
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Download file to see previous pages The driver of the speeding vehicle was Rodney Glenn King. He and two fellow passengers were intoxicated at that time. When the car chase ended, the other two did not resist arrest but Rodney King did. According to the police officers present at the scene, he acted aggressively, seemingly threatening the officers. So, they beat him. In fact, within a few minutes 4 officers had badly kicked Rodney King, shocked him, and used a taser gun and batons. Rodney King sustained eleven skull fractures and major kidney damage (VanHise, n.d.). Had it not been for George Holliday no one would have known of this in-humane behavior. George lived in a nearby flat and happened to have a camera with which he recorded the entire incident. He later gave the tape to a local news channel and by the next day, March 4th 1991, the video was playing on news channels everywhere (BBC, 2002). LAPD maintained that officers acted in self-defense. But the now infamous George Holliday video showed a merciless beating of a man who apparently possessed no weapons of any kind and was under the influence of alcohol and looked to be harmless. The video tape got humongous publicity, and due to the public outrage brought on by it, prosecutors filed charges against some of the police officers involved that night (BBC, 2002). ...
Everyone reacted with disbelief but for many, the very first emotion they felt was anger. Jury’s decision was the last spark needed to ignite riots from thousands of people from suppressed communities of Los Angeles (CNN Wire Staff. 2011). Three days of rioting ensued causing a loss of nearly $1 billion in L.A. alone. The riots then extended to other U.S. cities as well leading to 12000 arrests, 2000 reported injuries and 55 deaths. The extensive riots led to a federal civil rights trial of the four accused officers (Delk, 1995). This time around justice was served. The grand jury returned indictments against the officers on the 4th of August. The indictments were for three of the police officers for knowingly and deliberately harming an unarmed individual. Koon was accused because he allowed this illegal act to proceed and did not make an attempt to prevent it from happening. A compensation of 3.8 million dollars was given to Rodney as well (Linder, 2011). That beating on March 3, 1991 was not King’s last run-in with the law. In the years following the trial he was arrested many times. He has been arrested on charges of domestic abuse, DUI, robbing a convenience store and beating the clerk. Most of his problems stem from his addiction to alcohol. King’s parole officer Tim Fowler, describes him as a guy who can intelligently function in society. His problem, according to Tim, is alcoholism. King started drinking at an early age. Born is Sacramento in 1965, King was an exceptional athlete at his school and was attached to his father who passed away sooner than King would have liked. King helped his father in cleaning commercial buildings taking the late night shift of 5 pm to 2 am. This really disturbed his ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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