Apr-29 (Pt 2): American Cities Afire

On April 29, 1986 the Los Angeles Central Library caught fire, but that was nothing compared to the fires in the city six years later as the city rioted following the verdict in the Rodney King police brutality trial.  In 2015, Baltimore was afire and its beloved Orioles were forced to play to an empty stadium.


Arsonist Sets Fire to Los Angeles Central Library

A fire broke out in the Los Angeles Central Library, the third largest in the country, and grew quickly.  Sixty fire companies and 350 firefighters fought the blaze that claimed approximately 200,000 volumes.

The Central Library would not reopen until 1993.


Los Angeles Riots Following Rodney King Verdict

After a jury acquitted police officers in the police beating of Rodney King, the city of Los Angeles erupted.  Riots began in South Central Los Angeles, with widespread looting, assault, arson, and over $1 billion in property damage. Order was only restored after members of the California Army National Guard, the 7th Infantry Division, and the 1st Marine Division were called in to stop the rioting when local police could not control the situation. In total, 55 people were killed during the riots, more than 2,000 people were injured, and more than 11,000 were arrested.



Orioles Play in Empty Stadium Due to Riots

After the city became engulfed in riots following the death of an African-American suspect in police custody, the Baltimore Orioles played their scheduled home game at Camden Yards (not far from where the rioting had occurred) against the Chicago White Sox before an empty stadium.

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