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Profiles of Four Officers Charged in King Beating With PM-Taped Beating, Bjt

April 30, 1992

SIMI VALLEY, Calif. (AP) _ Here are brief profiles of the four policemen who were charged in the videotaped beating of Rodney King. The jury acquitted the officers of all charges but one, deadlocking on a count of excessive force.


Acquitted of assault with a deadly weapon, excessive force by an officer, filing a false police report and being an accessory to assault.

A 16-year department veteran before his suspension last year, Koon was the officer in charge when King was beaten. He shot King with a stun gun.

Koon, 41, testified at the trial that the beating was a ″managed and controlled use of force″ in keeping wiht LAPD policies and training.

Koon grew up in Southern California and served in the Air Force. He has a master’s degree in criminal justice and a master’s in public administration.


Acquitted of assault with a deadly weapon and excessive force by an officer.

Briseno, 39, was a nine-year police veteran before his suspension. He broke ranks with fellow officers during the trial and accused them of excessive force. ″I just thought the whole thing was out of control,″ he testified.

He grew up in Mattoon, Ill. Briseno is one-quarter Hispanic.

In 1987, the Police Department suspended Briseno for 66 days over allegations he roughed up a handcuffed suspect. Briseno admitted during a police inquiry that he had gotten ″a little too aggressive.″


Acquitted of assault with a deadly weapon and filing a false police report. Jurors deadlocked on a charge of excessive force.

Powell, 29, was a 3 1/2 -year police veteran before his suspension. Accused of delivering the most blows to King, Powell testifed that he acted as he did only after being attacked by a man he thought was on drugs.

Twenty minutes before the beating, Powell sent a computer message about a dispute involving a black family: ″It was right out of ’Gorillas in the Mist.‴ At his trial, Powell denied the message was a racial slur.

In a previous case, Powell was accused of striking a man up to five times with his baton, breaking the man’s elbow. Powell contended the man approached him in a threatening manner. The man sued; he settled for $70,000.


Acquitted of assault with a deadly weapon and excessive force.

Wind, 32, a probationary officer under Powell’s supervision the night of the beating, was accused of beating and kicking King.

Wind, the only officer not to testify, was fired.

Previously he worked for the police force of the Kansas City suburb of Shawnee and the Kansas City, Kan., department.

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