Officer Laurence M. Powell and Sgt. Stacey C. Koon had violated Rodney G. King’s civil rights and these officers were sentenced 2 1/2 years in prison. This sentence was reduced and brought up a lot of controversy. It all started when King had consumed a lot of alcohol and was really drunk. He ended up being involved in a high-speed chase with the officers and didn’t want to do what the police told him to do and continued to act highly aggressive. After about 55 seconds, or so, and more than a dozen blows later, King finally gave in. However, Powell continued with the strikes after King was already compliant. They counted about 6 extra strikes after King was already submissive. The judge then said that these blows were declared “illegal” and Powel and Koon were being punished only because of the “additional hits”. The incident was recorded, and it was decided that the additional hits by officer Powell were unlawful. However, what had happened during that beginning 55 seconds was completely legal and within the law.


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