On This Day: August 11th

On the 11th of August 1965 the Watts riots began in the Watts neighbourhood of Los Angeles, the riots lasted till August 17th. On August 11, 1965, an African-American motorist was arrested for drunk driving. A minor roadside argument broke out, and then escalated into a fight. The community reacted in outrage, and six days of looting and arson followed. Los Angeles police needed the support of nearly 4,000 members of the California Army National Guard to quell the riots, which resulted in 34 deaths and over $40 million in property damage. The riots were blamed principally on police racism. It was the city’s worst unrest until the Rodney King riots of 1992.

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