Sunday Jul 01, 201204:41 PM GMT
Funeral held for Los Angeles police victim Rodney King
Rodney King
Rodney King
Sun Jul 1, 2012 3:31PM
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Rodney King, the African-American motorist, whose videotaped 1991 beating by white policemen sparked the worst racial riots in the US history 20 years ago, has been buried.


The funeral service was held at Los Angeles' Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills on Saturday.

At the funeral, famous rights campaigner Rev Al Sharpton described him as a forgiving man and a great symbol in the American history.

"People should not be judged by the mistakes that they make, but by how they rise above them," Sharpton said.

King, 47, was found dead two weeks ago at the bottom of a swimming pool in his home in California. There was no sign of foul play, but the official cause of his death is still under investigation.

King grabbed headlines after his beating by Los Angeles police in 1991 was caught on camera.

The LA riots started on April 29, 1992 when an all-white Simi Valley jury acquitted four LA Police Department (LAPD) officers of wrongdoing in King’s beating.

Over the course of six days, the unrest spread quickly throughout the city and left at least 53 people dead, about 2,500 injured, and caused over one billion dollars of property damage.

Following the bloody protests, two of the four police officers were sentenced to two years in prison.

At the time of the riots, police brutality and bigotry was the order of the day for the LAPD, according to the representatives of the African-American community.

At 26, King had been imprisoned for robbery. On March 3, 1991, when temporarily released on bail, he was arrested again for refusing to stop his car after overspeeding.

The four police officers who arrested King, brutality kicked and beat him with electroshock and ordinary batons. Meanwhile, a bystander videotaped the incident from his apartment window. The video rapidly spread and was viewed across the US.

PG/PKH/AZ
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