By Tony Castro
Whittier Daily News
LOS ANGELES — Twenty years ago Thursday, shortly after midnight, what should have been a routine traffic stop on a San Fernando Valley freeway escalated into an altercation that forever changed policing - and race relations - in Los Angeles.
Unaware they were being filmed by an amateur cameraman, four white LAPD officers beat an African-American motorist named Rodney King. The 12-minute video was aired that night by a local TV station, giving Angelenos and the rest of the world a glimpse of shocking behavior from those sworn to protect and serve.
"That day put in motion the forces that changed and dramatically transformed Los Angeles, the LAPD and many of our institutions," says Bernard Kinsey, who helped lead Rebuild Los Angeles, the economic redevelopment agency formed after the 1992 Los Angeles riots.
Rodney King beating changed LAPD forever