LAPD (King Beating) Trial (1992)

It seemed like an open-and-shut case. The George Holliday video, played on television so often that an executive at CNN called it "wallpaper," showed three Los Angeles police officers--as their supervisor watched-- kicking, stomping on, and beating with metal batons a seemingly defenseless African-American named Rodney King. Polls taken shortly after the incident showed that over 90% of Los Angeles residents who saw the videotape believed that the police used excessive force in arresting King. Despite the videotape, a jury in Simi Valley concluded a year later that the evidence was not sufficient to convict the officers. Within hours of the jury's verdict, Los Angeles erupted in riots. When it was over, fifty-four people had lost their lives, over 7,000 people had been arrested, and hundreds of millions of dollars worth of property had been destroyed.


Why did the twelve members of the jury fail to convict any of the officers? Was the jury racist, as some charged? Or did the jury see something in the evidence that justified the brutality witnessed on the Holliday videotape?....