We have really sad news to report. Rodney King was found dead in his swimming pool yesterday. He was only 47-year-old. While an autopsy still has to be performed, his fiance, Cynthia Kelly, has been telling people that he had been drinking and smoking pot on the day of his death. All we know for sure, so far, is that paramedics were called after Cynthia found the former Celebrity Rehab patient at the bottom of the pool just before 5.30 in the morning, but they were unable to revive him.
King was a polarizing factor of the L.A. riots in 1994. Police brutality came out into the open after he was tasered and beaten severely by four policemen, back in 1991, after a car chase. The incident was videotaped by a private citizen who took it to KTLA television who broadcast the whole brutal episode causing widespread shock. The four officers were put on trial, but it was their acquittal which led to the rioting, which started off as protests. The story behind the riots is documented on VH1 Rock Doc Uprising: Hip Hop And The L.A. Riots which King is also in. The L.A. Police Chief, Charlie Beck, has released a statement that says, “Rodney King has a unique spot in both the history of Los Angeles and the LAPD. What happened on that cool March night over two decades ago forever changed me and the organization I love. His legacy should not be the struggles and troubles of his personal life but the immensely positive change his existence wrought on this City and its Police Department.” This is really such tragic news, and our heartfelt condolences go out to his family.
[Photo: Getty Images]