Rodney King, the man at the center of the infamous 1992 L.A. riots, has died at age 47.
King was found in his pool at his Rialto, Calif. home by his fiancee, Cynthia Kelly, according to initial reports by TMZ. Law enforcement pronounced King dead at 6:11 AM PT. Rialto police will are opening a drowning investigation to confirm the cause of death.
King was the famous victim of a police brutality case in 1991. After leading highway officers on a high speed chase, four LAPD officers caught up with King and were caught brutally beating King by an amateur cameraman. The footage was later made public, and when the three of the officers were acquitted and the fourth was set free after an inconclusive trial, the city of Los Angeles broke out in riots in protest. President George H.W. Bush was also quoted expressing his shock at the verdict, which was in direct contest with the video evidence of the violent beating.
Since then, King has struggled with alcohol addiction, even acting as a guest/patient on Dr. Drew Pinsky’s Celebrity Rehab series on VH1. He also participated in the spin-off series Sober House, where he discussed the remaining trauma from the LAPD beatings.
King is survived by three children and his fiancee.
[Image: Getty Images]