Rodney King, key figure in LA riots, dies at 47 - My9 New Jersey

Rodney King, key figure in LA riots, dies at 47

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — The black motorist whose videotaped beating led to riots in Los Angeles has died.

Police say Rodney King was pulled from a swimming pool at his California home early today and pronounced dead at a hospital. He was 47.

Police say the preliminary investigation indicates drowning, with no signs of foul play. Investigators will await autopsy results to determine whether drugs or alcohol were involved, but police say there were no alcoholic beverages or paraphernalia found near the pool.

The San Bernardino County coroner will perform an autopsy on King within 48 hours.

King's 1991 beating by Los Angeles police officers was caught on video by a bystander. When a suburban jury acquitted the officers in 1992, city residents rioted. Three days of violence left 55 people dead, more than 2,000 injured and swaths of Los Angeles on fire.

At the height of it, King made his famous plea on television: "Can we all get along?"

In the two decades since, King was arrested several times, mostly for alcohol-related crimes. He became a record company executive and a reality TV star, appearing on shows such as "Celebrity Rehab."

In an interview earlier this year with The Associated Press, King said he was a happy man.

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