Watts Riot

It is difficult to choose just one dimension that most defined the events of the Watts Rebellion in 1965. The duration of the riot was six days resulting in $40 million worth of property damage, to 1,000 buildings over a 50 square mile area of Los Angeles.  The asymmetry of the damage was primarily to African-American neighborhoods as was the number of people injured or killed. Most of the 34 dead were Black citizens. Two policemen and one firefighter were among the casualties, and 26 deaths, mostly the result of Los Angeles Police Department or National Guard actions, were deemed justifiable homicides.

This racial disorder can best be described as a rebellion since it started as and continued as open resistance against the orders of an established authority.  A white California Highway Patrol officer pulled over two black stepbrothers in the Watts neighborhood.  When they resisted arrest, a crowd  gathered and a riot started.  Word traveled and crowds grew across the Watts area and a series of riots began.  A rebellion originates from a sentiment of indignation and disapproval of a situation and then manifests itself by the refusal to submit or to obey the authority responsible for this situation.  The situation became so dire that 14,000 national guard troops were called in, creating a national incident.  The damage done through looting and fires to the areas where riot participants lived was massive as well and looters were making a statement by destroying their own neighborhoods. This riot is also very well known ad the Los Angeles Rebellion for the wide bread effect it had on the Black community in California.

TRIGGER EG-The riot spurred an incident on August 1965 when Marquette Frye, a young African American motorist, was pulled over and arrested and beaten with his nightstick 
CROWD SIZE EG- over the 6 days between 31,000-35,000
DURATION EG- 6 days 
NUMBER & IDENTITY OF THOSE KILLED & INJURED  EG- 34 deaths, 1,032 injuries, 3,438 arrests
LEVELS  OF GOVERNMENT INVOLVED (LOCAL, STATE, FEDERAL) EG- 934 LAPD officers and 718 officers from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD), and nearly 14,000 members of the California Army National Guard 
AMOUNT & KIND OF PROPERTY DAMAGE  EG- more than 40 million worth of property 
GEOGRAPHICAL SPREAD  EG- Stretching from the southern part of downtown LA, southward more than a dozen miles 46.5 square mile zone, where Watts is only 2.12 square miles