On March 3, 1991, a black man was pulled over in Los Angeles – and what happened next showed the entire nation what police brutality looks like.

George Holliday, a man just looking to test a new video camera, ended up capturing a critical 81 seconds of Rodney King’s life. Eighty-one seconds in which Los Angeles police officers hit King more than 50 times with fists and batons. King’s beating is one of the most famous acts of police violence in modern American history.

Reveal host Al Letson talks to Holliday, the man behind the camera that night 24 years ago. We hear about what happened that evening, how he feels about the role he played in pioneering citizen journalism, and his thoughts on capturing police misbehavior on video today.

DIG DEEPER

  • Holliday is working on a video about his story; click here to learn more.

Julia B. Chan worked at The Center for Investigative Reporting until June, 2017. Julia B. Chan is a producer and the digital editor for Reveal's national public radio program. She’s the voice of Reveal online and manages the production and curation of digital story assets that are sent to more than 200 stations across the country. Previously, Chan helped The Center for Investigative Reporting launch YouTube’s first investigative news channel, The I Files, and led engagement strategies – online and off – for multimedia projects. She oversaw communications, worked to better connect CIR’s work with a bigger audience and developed creative content and collaborations to garner conversation and impact.

Before joining CIR, Chan worked as a Web editor and reporter at the San Francisco Examiner. She managed the newspaper’s digital strategy and orchestrated its first foray into social media and online engagement. A rare San Francisco native, she studied broadcasting at San Francisco State University, focusing on audio production and recording. Chan is based in Reveal's Emeryville, California, office.