The riots that erupted on April 29, 1992, were among the most lethal in U.S. history. By the time order was restored, 53 people had died, nearly 3,000 people were injured and thousands of businesses were damaged or destroyed.
Nearly a year later, a federal jury convicted two of the police officers of a federal charge of violating King’s civil rights and sentenced them to 30 months in prison. Two other officers were acquitted. King eventually received a $3.8 million settlement from the city, and the case led to sweeping changes in LAPD.
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More recently, King had been promoting his just-published memoir, “The Riot Within: My Journey From Rebellion to Redemption.”
Many seem to agree that the city is safer today and relations between ethnic groups have improved. A recent poll of Los Angeles residents by the Center for the Study of Los Angeles at Loyola Marymount University found that most say L.A. is unlikely to see a repeat of such riots in the coming years.
Here is the last reflection he ever gave:
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