King was found dead in his home by his fiance, his representative Suzanne Wickman confirmed to ABC7 News sister station in Los Angeles, KABC-TV, on Sunday.The cause of death is unknown at this time. King was known for being beaten by LAPD officers during a 1991 DUI traffic stop that eventually led to the 1992 Los Angeles riots. A bystander videotaped much of the incident from a distance. The footage shows four LAPD officers severely beating King, striking him 56 times. On the 20th anniversary of the L.A. riots this past March, King looked back on the beating and verdict that set off the civil unrest. When the verdict was announced, King said he was beyond devastated. "It felt like Armageddon. It felt like the end of the world," he told Eyewitness News anchor Marc Brown. "I was hurt. I was past upset." The L.A. riots, which started April 29, 1992, was the worst riot in U.S history. Fifty-three people died and more than 2,000 were injured. Arsonists set some 7,000 fires and caused $1 billion in damage. In the years since the beating and the following riots, King has struggled to live a stable life. He was arrested or detained by police at least a dozen times on charges ranging from DUI to domestic violence. Just months ago, King released a book he co-wrote with author Lawrence Spagnola entitled, "The Riot Within: My Journey from Rebellion to Redemption." It chronicles his life before, during and since the now-notorious videotaped beating in 1991 that cemented his place in history.
Rodney King was found dead in his home this morning; He was 47
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