LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Rodney King, the man at the center of an infamous police beating which ignited the 1992 Los Angeles riots, died Sunday at the age of 47, his publicist confirmed.
Rialto police Capt. Randy De Anda told KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO that they responded to a home in the 1000 block of East Jackson Avenue about 5:25 a.m. after receiving a 911 call from King’s fiancée who reported that she found him at the bottom of his pool.
“Rialto police officers responded to the location and removed him from inside of the pool and began CPR. The Rialto Fire Department paramedics responded and transported Mr. King to the Arrowhead Regional Medical Center where he was later pronounced dead at 6:11 a.m. this morning,” he said.
“It appears there was some verbal contact with the fiancée at which time she went outside and she found him at the bottom of the pool,” De Anda said, adding that no altercation whatsoever had occurred.
Rialto police are conducting a drowning investigation. Preliminary information showed no signs of foul play, he said.
De Anda said an autopsy will be performed by the San Bernardino Coroner’s office on Monday morning.
King had been a longtime resident of Rialto. He became known worldwide back in 1991 when his arrest and beating by Los Angeles police officers was captured on videotape. The officers involved in that incident were acquitted the following year.
The announcement of the verdict led to the 1992 Los Angeles riots.
In April 2012, King spoke candidly to CBS2/KCAL9 News anchor Pat Harvey about his life since the riots as well as his ability to forgive the officers.
“I just felt the support throughout the world not just here in America but the letters and the positive comments and feedback that I was getting since the beating. And people have forgiven me for some things that I’ve done and so, I wouldn’t be able to live with myself if I wasn’t able to forgive the officers,” he told Harvey.
Recently, he published, “The Riot Within: My Journey from Rebellion to Redemption.” The entire interview can be seen below: