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On the 30th anniversary of the Los Angeles riots that shook America in 1992, we asked Triawna Wood, a lifelong Los Angeles resident, for her thoughts and insights.
Los Angeles erupted after the Simi Valley jury acquitted Officers Stacey Koon, Laurence Powell, Timothy Wind, and Theodore Briseno for the beating of Rodney King. The riots lasted six days and when the smoke cleared, 63 people were killed, 2,383 were injured and more than 12,000 were arrested. The property damage was estimated to be well over $1 billion.
Wood was four and a half years old and living with her family in the Jordan Downs projects in the Watts neighborhood when the riots erupted. Today, she is a married Army veteran who homeschools her three children.
What follows is a Q&A that has been lightly edited and condensed for clarity. We strongly encourage you to watch the accompanying video so you may hear Wood in her own words.
Q: Where were you when the Los Angeles riots began?
A: I was in preschool. My mom picked me up from school, we were coming back home. My normal routine was my mom would watch soap operas and once the