SENTINEL 6-7-2012
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Rodney vs. Rodney

"The enemy was me"

Part 3 of 3

The Firpo Files

(Sentinel, May 31, 2012)


An anonymous writer once wrote: "I searched for the enemy that I could not see, when I looked in the mirror the enemy was me."

Rodney King's book is aptly named, The Riot Within (2012), and he has admitted that since his brutal beating at the hands of members of the California Highway Patrol and Los Angeles Police Department in 1992, he has on more than one occasion been his own worst enemy.

For him it has been a riot within.

Rodney on a Roll: May 11, 1991: "A couple of months after the beating, I was pulled over in Santa Fe Springs." Illegally tinted windows say the cops. "I didn't have my license on me, and my registration had expired, but they didn't cite me."

May 28, 1991: Arrested in Hollywood when vice officer alleged King was found with a transvestite hooker. Accused of trying to run over arresting officer. King unaware "he was a cop." Released without being charged.

June 26, 1992: Accused of spousal abuse against wife Crystal. Complaint not filed. No charges filed.

July 16, 1992: Arrested for drunk driving. No charges filed.

August 21, 1993: Arrested for drunk driving, crashing car in downtown L.A. Voluntarily entered alcohol rehab for 60 days. Paid fine of $1,438; did community service for 20 days; and got three years probation.

May 1995: "Arrested and charged with DUI again, this time in Pennsylvania." "Luckily, the jury acquitted me."

July 14, 1995: Arrested for "domestic violence and assault with a deadly weapon (the car)." Found guilty of misdemeanor hit-and-run and served 20 days in L.A. County jail. Acquitted of assault with a deadly weapon, reckless driving, and spousal abuse.

July 21, 1995: Mistakenly accused of stealing a woman's purse in Glendale, California. Cleared by police.

January 31, 1999: Previously accused of hurting 16-year-old daughter, Candance, as well as her mother, Carmen Simpson. Police came to house, but King not arrested.

March 3, 1999: In connection with above incident, warrant issued for "spousal battery, child abuse, and vandalism." After turning self in, King did 90 days in San Bernardino County jail.

September 2001: Arrested in Pomona, California, "for indecent exposure and for being on PCP." Mandatory drug treatment program for a year.

April 2003: While under the influence of PCP, drove Ford Expedition "into a fence in San Bernardino at 100 miles per hour." Sentenced to 120 days in jail and six months of drug rehab.

October 2003: Arrested in Rialto, California, after being suspected of "punching my girlfriend in the stomach. The police didn't prosecute."

September 2005: Arrested "because I supposedly threatened to kill my daughter and her mom when they were arguing with my then girlfriend. The police didn't prosecute that case either."

March 2011: "I suffered a setback when I was stopped by L.A. police for driving erratically and issued a citation for driving with an expired license."

July 2011: Arrested for drunk driving in Moreno Valley, California.

August 2011: Arrested and charged with DUI. "The cops said I was drunk past the legal limit and high on marijuana. I pleaded not guilty in November because I believed I was under the limit. If convicted, I could get a year in jail."

Rodney Glen King will be the first to tell you that he was raised better. "Momma says that Jehovah will have his day of reckoning with people, and I believe that," Glen admits.

"She says there will be an accounting." He fondly recalled attending district conventions of Jehovah's Witnesses held at Dodger Stadium at the time, thanking "Jehovah" twice as he lectured at Eso Won Books.

Black History: Just as the Jews treasure their history, learning Black history was therapeutic for Glen. His primary attorney, Milton Grimes, "paid to have me tutored on African-American history and culture.

"When questioned, Grimes said the history lessons were important in giving me a greater sense of self-worth and helping me gain some self-esteem."

"They compared me to civil rights leaders, including Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X. But no way I was holding myself up as an equal to those guys."

"I thought it was a good idea to bone up on the teachings of Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, and Medgar Evers. I read about their courage and vision, and it gave me a greater sense of the responsibility that came with the way people perceived me, as a symbol."

"The more I learned about black history, the more my attitude improved."

Peace and blessings to you Glen. Amen.