October 17, 2011
Rodney King is an African American male who gained national attention for a beating that he endured at the hands of four white police officers in Los Angeles, California in 1991.
Rodney King was allegedly pulled over for speeding at a rate of speed as high as 110 mph on the night of March 3, 1991. An amateur cameraman by the name of George Holliday videotaped King being beaten by four white Los Angeles Police Officers who were later identified as Lawrence Powell, Timothy Wind, Theodore Briseno, and Stacey Koon. The four officers alleged that Rodney King was pulled over for traffic violations and that King appeared to be intoxicated and that he also was being disobedient by not staying on the ground as he was ordered to do by the officers. King was also tasered twice by the officers but he still continued to try and get up, which the officers claimed made them begin to strike King with their police batons for nearly 2 minutes (Anonymous, 2011).
The officers tried to justify their actions by claiming that they tried to contain King without the use of firearms. The officers also claimed to be fearful of King whom they said to believe was on the drug PCP, which can enhance a person’s ability to gain strength which could have caused King to overpower the officers. George Holliday sent the videotape to CNN and news stations across the United States who televised the beating repeatedly. As news of the Rodney King beating began to spread, people across the nation believed that Rodney King’s beating was racially motivated and that the officers involved should be prosecuted. The four officers where eventually charged with crimes which included assault with a deadly weapon and also with filing a false police report.
The officers trial was originally suppose to be held in Los Angeles, California but the attorneys for the officers did not believe that their clients could receive...