With the 20th anniversary of the 1992 L.A. Riots coming up over the weekend, there will be countless stories to read looking back at the legacy of the Rodney King trial, the violence that followed, and whether we've really progressed as a society at all since then. (Rodney King himself thinks we have, despite seeing disturbing parallels in the death of Trayvon Martin). But if you're looking for a more in-your-face way to remember and reflect on what happened during those terrible late-April days, start following @RealTimeLARiots, a Twitter account being manned by the newsroom team at KNBC, the local NBC affiliate. It's an attempt, the station explains, to answer the question, "What if Twitter existed in 1992?"
So far, the account has been chronicling the end of the trial of the four police officers accused of beating Rodney King. But on April 29 at 3:15 p.m. Los Angeles time, "the verdict will be announced and the account will shift focus to the riots, complete with archive footage, photos and breaking news from around Los Angeles."
"But, then again, it's going to be a relief to get it over." #LaurencePowell— Real Time LA Riots (@RealTimeLARiots) April 27, 2012
Waiting through jury deliberation "very difficult" for him, says #LaurencePowell.— Real Time LA Riots (@RealTimeLARiots) April 27, 2012
Courtroom Update: Officers now allowed to leave Simi Valley Courthouse after checking in each day. #RodneyKing— Real Time LA Riots (@RealTimeLARiots) April 27, 2012
"If we all work together, there will be little or no trouble or violence," says @LAPD Chief-designate Willie Williams— Real Time LA Riots (@RealTimeLARiots) April 26, 2012