RIALTO, CA (CNN/RNN) – The Rialto Police Department has released the audio from the frantic 911 call by Rodney King's fiancée, Cynthia Kelley.
Kelley made the call at 5:25 a.m. after finding King at the bottom of his pool.
Paramedics tried to resuscitate him, but could not. He was pronounced dead at Arrowhead Regional Medical Center in Colton, CA, about 6:11 a.m.
Excerpts from the 911 call:
Operator: Is he breathing?
Caller: He's at the bottom of the swimming pool and I've been doing stuff to try and wake him up.
Operator: How old is he?
Caller: He's Rodney King. The guy who got beat by police.
Operator: Ok, how old is he?
Caller: He's 47 years old. He's not moving, he's at the bottom of the swimming pool. I don't know, I was sleep."
Operator: Is he out now or still in the pool?
Caller: Yes. I was sleeping, and I heard something fall like a table and I went to find him and he was at the bottom of the swimming pool.
Kelley said she couldn't jump in the pool after him because she can't swim, and that she threw a shovel into the water to try waking him up.
King, 47, became a symbol of police brutality after Los Angeles Police tased him and struck him more than 50 times with their batons, resulting in 11 skull fractures and a busted eye socket. King had led the officers on a high-speed chase on March 4, 1991, and the beating was caught on video and shown around the world.
It was one of the first times citizen-captured video was used to implicate law enforcement misconduct.
After the officers involved were acquitted of charges in the case, riots erupted April 29, 1992 in Los Angeles, resulting in 54 deaths and millions of dollars in damage. More than 2,000 people were injured in the riots.
Kings famous words, "Can we all get along?" became the mantra for the need for improved race relations.
In a claim filed with the city, King said he sustained permanent brain damage, kidney damage and multiple broken bones, among other injuries.
King was an avid swimmer, doing it for his physical therapy to deal with the wounds he suffered in that well-documented beating but also sort of a mental therapy.
Rodney King had told reporters he did suffer from alcohol addiction but seemed to be doing very well when interviewed about a month and a half ago around the 20th anniversary of the L.A. Riots, and seemed to be reckoning with his demons.
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