Koreatown use of AR-15s in LA Riots


PDA






hjaeger
September 28, 2004, 07:07 PM
Could anyone point me to some useful information about the use of ARs/AKs by Korean shopowners in the 1993 Rodney King riots? Any info is appreciated; I've spent long hours searching Google, Altavista etc. but as of yet haven't found anything useful.

Official information, pictures, and newscasts or newspaper articles are appreciated.

If you enjoyed reading about "Koreatown use of AR-15s in LA Riots" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
sumpnz
September 28, 2004, 07:25 PM
I don't have any of that information specifically, but my cube mate at work lived in LA during that time period. He said that most of those Korean shopkeepers that defended their property with guns were prosecuted for breaking various gun laws afterwards. Dunno if that is correct but that is what he said he remembered.

RKCheung
September 28, 2004, 07:35 PM
http://www.findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m5072/is_14_24/ai_91481192

Jong Min Kang, president of the Korean American Business Association, was president of Korean Young Adult Team of L.A., when the riots erupted.

"THERE was a lot of activity to protect I Korean businesses, especially in Koreatown. A lot of young Korean people had weapons. There was every kind of weapon, AK-47s and Uzis.

"I have two businesses, one downtown, which is general wholesale merchandise, and another in South Central, a discount retail shop. My store in South Central is in a strip mall and there were more than 100 merchants there and more than 20 security guards to protect the Korean stores. So (the rioters) couldn't come in. Nothing happened to those stores but a lot of other stores were burned. It was a terrible situation."

hjaeger
September 28, 2004, 08:55 PM
Thanks on both accounts.

RKCheung
September 28, 2004, 10:53 PM
I've done my share of googling for good eyewitness or participatory accounts, but it's tough. The Internet was not in wide usage back then so no blogs or anything to document it. Plus it's my personal opinion that the media is loathe to publish anything that remotely promotes citizens taking the responsibility to protect their lives and property through firearms.

Stand_Watie
September 28, 2004, 11:33 PM
I know this is anecdotal, and not useful in your quest for internet type provavable sources, but I do recall a photo or a videoclip of an asian shopowner standing on the roof of his business with an 'assault rifle'. This is particularly memorable to me because it kind of dashed (for me) the stereotype of American asians being passive non-gunowning types of folk.

The membership of this board has added to that reassessment.

I remember thinking "cool - that guy looks like a real hard-ass, I wouldn't want to try and loot his shop."

Justin
September 29, 2004, 12:52 AM
I have an anecdotal, third hand story.

A fellow I used to shoot with told me that he had been a studio camera operator at one of the TV stations in the city. He said that at one point a Korean man was allowed on television to speak to the community.

He said he didn't understand a word of what he was saying except when he'd rattle off numbers like 223 and 9 millimeter.

joe sixpack
September 29, 2004, 05:30 AM
IIRC the only picture I saw in the paper showed an Asian guy with an AR.

Another anecdote break:

I had a small retail business and did a lot of business in South Central
LA, the place where the riots broke out.

One day several months before, a middle aged black man came in and was complaining about the Koreans. He expressed anti-Korean sentiments that he said were due to a lot of the businesses in that area and others were owned by Koreans and there had been some incidents of shop keepers shooting blacks (criminals albeit), including one where some young black girl who was shot and killed for stealing. Many blacks percieved the Koreans as being cold, unsympathetic and just there to suck the money out of their pockets. Also some blacks felt that they were at a disadvantage to the them as they were able to get capital in the form of some sort of business loans (whether this is true or not I do not know).

The point about the shopkeepers being rather cold is one not lost on me.
One particular convenience store I had the opportunity to frequent had
a sign that said "Put your money on the counter and get out!" But hell,
they seemed like equal opportunity offenders.;)

Anyways he told me that "You guys are okay," meaning us white folks, "we don't have any problem with you, but those Koreans, we're gonna UZI their a@#es."

Several months later the LAPD trial for beating Rodney King went down,
and the city erupted. I could smell the smoke from my house and of course it was on every tv station full time. My wife and son unbeknownst to me
had gone to the beach that day (they didn't know anything was going on
until they were coming home and saw all the individual areas of smoke
from the freeway).

That convinced us to leave LA two months later and we stayed away
for almost two years before moving back.


cheers, js

RangerHAAF
September 29, 2004, 08:58 AM
I remember seeing the videotape of the girl who was shot and killed by the merchant; of course she was shot just after she got finished beating the hell out of the woman behind the counter. Everyone thought this incident would incite more "Rodney King" type outbursts but nothing happened.

Also, during that time Atlanta had some mini riots, I can't remember if the merchants defended their property the same way as the merchants in LA did. It was a scary time; they even caught cops on videotape in with the rioters!!

molonlabe
September 29, 2004, 09:19 AM
Try here
http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?s=&threadid=19039&highlight=riots

and here
http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?s=&threadid=25350&highlight=riots

geekWithA.45
September 29, 2004, 10:37 AM
Third hand anecdote:

What I heard was that in at least one area, folks had mustered an effective defense, and were ordered to stand down and evacuate by the Guard, who at a later time evacuated themselves, as they had no ammo with which to repel the advancing mob. The result was the destruction of said area.

I also recall seeing a thread either here or over on TFL with a lot of photos.

Zundfolge
September 29, 2004, 10:43 AM
"THERE was a lot of activity to protect I Korean businesses, especially in Koreatown. A lot of young Korean people had weapons. There was every kind of weapon, AK-47s and Uzis.

Whats the deal with AK-47s and Uzis? Seems like every time someone talks about "assault" weapons its all "Ak-47s and Uzis this and Ak-47s and Uzis that".


Whats the deal, are Ak-47s and Uzis the "peas and carrots" of the gun world?


Just seeing them together all the time makes me wonder if the source hasn't been reading their DNC & VPC talking points memos :scrutiny:


Uzis are just not all that common ... it would make more sense to say Ak-47s and AR-15s then Ak-47s and Uzis yet there's always that reference to that little Israeli sub gun again.

Hmm. :scrutiny:

sicorican
September 29, 2004, 11:27 AM
http://www.columbia.edu/itc/history/brinkley/3651/photos/nineties/LA%20Riot3.jpg

I hope that worked. If not, here's a link. It's not an AK, but I think it gets the point across...

http://www.columbia.edu/itc/history/brinkley/3651/photos/nineties/LA%20Riot3.jpg

armoredman
September 29, 2004, 11:43 AM
Catch him in the middle of a mag change????:D

DorGunR
September 29, 2004, 12:55 PM
Catch him in the middle of a mag change????

:D :D :D

mete
September 29, 2004, 02:11 PM
I remember the black riots in NYC 30+ years ago .An old timer from Germany said this is just like Germany in the depression - if you had a business you had to get a gun to defend it from looters ! And the problems with the KKK in the south were limited because some blacks had guns . And of course just a few handguns changed the entire strategy of the German army during the Warsaw ghetto uprising.

jnojr
September 29, 2004, 02:24 PM
I know this is anecdotal, and not useful in your quest for internet type provavable sources, but I do recall a photo or a videoclip of an asian shopowner standing on the roof of his business with an 'assault rifle'.

I vividly remember that as well. Wish I could remember what station...

RKCheung
September 29, 2004, 02:53 PM
I don't know if this footage is any good because I can't check it right now, but here it is if anyone wants to take a look.

http://www.cnn.com/resources/video.almanac/1992/#la.riots

http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-riotsvideo.videogallery

DorGunR
September 29, 2004, 02:53 PM
I vividly remember that as well. Wish I could remember what station...

I was working in LA at the time and I believe the station was KABC chan 7.

RKCheung
September 29, 2004, 02:58 PM
Stories from the LA times: http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-92riots-gallery.storygallery

One GREAT article - http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-050292-riot-looters,1,4384093.story

Looters, Merchants Put Koreatown Under the Gun
Violence: Lacking confidence in the police, employees and others armed themselves to protect mini-mall.

By ASHLEY DUNN, TIMES STAFF WRITER


In the shadow of a flaming mini-mall near the corner of 5th and Western, behind a barricade of luxury sedans and battered grocery trucks, they built Firebase Koreatown. Richard Rhee, owner of the supermarket on the corner, had watched as roving bands of looters ransacked and burned Korean-owned businesses on virtually every block.

But here, it would be different.

"Burn this down after 33 years?" asked Rhee, a survivor of the Korean War, the Watts riots and three decades of business in Los Angeles. "They don't know how hard I've worked. This is my market and I'm going to protect it."

From the rooftop of his supermarket, a group of Koreans armed with shotguns and automatic weapons peered onto the smoky streets. Scores of others, carrying steel pipes, pistols and automatic rifles, paced through the darkened parking lot in anticipation of an assault by looters.

"It's just like war," Rhee said, surveying his makeshift command. "I'll shoot and worry about the law later."

From tiny liquor stores in South-Central Los Angeles to the upscale boutiques in Mid-Wilshire, Korean store owners have turned their pastel-colored mini-malls into fortresses against the looter's tide.

For many store owners, the riots have become a watershed in the struggle for the survival of their community.

They have become vigilantes, embracing a new brutal code of order that has inflamed the fragile relationship they had worked hard to forge between themselves and their black and Latino customers.

For some Koreans, the violence has sparked a renewed call for conciliation between the races. But for others, the world has become framed in a blind and vindictive anger.

"We have to stay here," said Dong Hee Ku, a student at Los Angeles City College who went to help defend Rhee's California Market. "All the victims are always Koreans. The (looters), they are like beasts. They are not men."

Korean shop owners and their supporters have lashed out at police, saying they have begged for protection from vandals, who have left a swath of Koreatown in ashes. Now, many have decided to fight for themselves.

"Where are the police? Where are the soldiers?" asked John Chu, who was vacationing in Los Angeles when the riots broke out and rushed to help Rhee defend the California Market. "We are not going to lose again. We have no choice but to defend ourselves."

Koreans from throughout the area have rushed to Koreatown, spearheaded by a small group of elite Korean marine veterans, heeding a call put out on Korean-language radio stations for volunteer security guards.

"The police cannot help us now," said Tony Ji, a Korean-born seafood seller from El Monte who came to the California Market with his brother after work Thursday.

Even with guns, they seemed at times overwhelmed by the crowds of looters. For hours Thursday, Jay Rhee, no relation to Richard Rhee, and other employees at a mini-mall at Santa Monica and Vermont, several miles north of Koreatown, fought a back-and-forth battle with several hundred looters who surged into the parking lot, retreated when police arrived and returned shortly after police left.

Jay Rhee estimated that he and others fired 500 shots into the ground and air. "We have lost our faith in the police," he said. "Where were you when we needed you."

One of the largest armed camps in Koreatown was at the California Market.On the first night after the verdicts were returned in the trial of the four officers charged in the beating of Rodney King, Richard Rhee, the market owner, posted himself in the parking lot with about 20 armed employees.

They barricaded the entrances to the store with pallets of bagged rice and boxed cabbage. A long stack of shopping carts covered the front windows.

The first night they had no problems. But Thursday brought a disastrous round of looting that raged all around them. By late afternoon a fire broke out at a mini-mall a half-block away. They watched for hours from the parking lot as it burned to the ground.

The shooting began as evening fell Thursday. The first carload of rioters was repulsed with a burst of gunfire into the air that littered the parking lot with empty cartridges. They frightened off a second and a third carload of shooters.

As curfew fell around 7:30 p.m., the looters disappeared, leaving only Rhee's men at the California Market and the group of neighbors still trying to put out the fire in the nearby mini-mall.

Late in the evening another Koreatown shop owner called, warning Rhee that a carload of looters was heading their way. The men raced to a corner of the lot to meet them head on, but the car never came.

"This scares me," said a haggard Rhee, who had not slept since the verdict.

After the false alarm, the night settled into an uneasy calm as the traffic on Western Avenue dwindled to a trickle. The guards on the roof came down to the parking lot to drink soda and eat pastry.

"It's quieter tonight," Rhee said Thursday from his post at one corner of the parking lot. "I think the curfew has affected it a lot."

The men relaxed, although they continued to receive reports of violence through the night.

One Korean merchant drove by and told them a Korean was killed near 3rd Street and Hobart Boulevard.

The men huddled around a radio tuned to a Korean-language station. The station reported 200 police uniforms had been stolen. "So we must check and be sure," the announcer said. "We cannot trust a person just because they are wearing a uniform."

Another report of a Korean restaurant on fire in Reseda was broadcast and the station announcer asks the owner to respond. The men grow grim.

At 10:30 p.m. the calm is shattered as several police cars pull up and a group of officers barrels out, leveling weapons at the Koreans.

"Get your hands up!" an officer yelled. "Hands up! Stand up! Hands up!"

The Koreans stood frozen for a moment, uncertain what the officers wanted.

"Hands up!" the officer yelled again as a floodlight from a police car scanned the group.

For a moment, the two groups stood motionless before each other.

"Wait," an officer finally said. "This isn't it. They're all Koreans."

The officers returned to their cars and sped off.

The Koreans chuckled in relief. A few minutes later a single squad car pulled up next to the parking lot and stopped.

Richard Rhee stared at the black Los Angeles police officer at the wheel.

"William, is that you?" Rhee asked.

The officer nodded and smiled back.

"Stay here with us," Rhee said.

The officer smiled and shook his head. "I wish I could," he said before he drove off into the night.

RKCheung
September 29, 2004, 03:05 PM
Some photos: http://www.kang.org/LARiot.html

http://www.kang.org/sajin/riotrrhee.GIF

http://www.kang.org/sajin/riotyouth.jpg

Harry Tuttle
September 29, 2004, 03:36 PM
more data:
http://www.kron4.com/Global/story.asp?S=762321&nav=5D7l5O2b

Jon Coppenbarger
September 29, 2004, 03:58 PM
I was not in LA when it went down but was up in Sacramento and it turned out to be pretty quite and alot of us were happy it was.

I believe if you plan on going to trouble you take what ever you have that best suits what you plan on doing. Back in those days it was not illegal to have those weapons.
My friends were doing a baseball card show at a mall on that friday and had setup and were told they were warned that there was going to be rioting at the mall and they needed to close up and be out of the mall as soon as they could.
I was called along with a few others and went to the mall to be with our friends while they were packing . Nothing happened but a few of us took some weapons to defend our property and friends. I had a gun shop at the
time and took a few so called assult rifles with me and personally I took my armalite ar180 and a few of us stayed in the parking lot a I went in and we packed but I passed out a few m11's and m10's and a few 45's. When you have boxes and briefcases you can hide alot of things.

They had it hard down there and it was a good example of the police not being able to protect you but I do not blam them on that one as they were out numbered also.

jon

one45auto
September 29, 2004, 09:21 PM
I, too, have a distinct memory of a Korean shopkeeper atop his store and armed with a rifle. That did my heart good, because I just love it when decent people fight back against the criminal scum. :)

RKCheung
September 29, 2004, 11:34 PM
Around 2:30 in this video (http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-042702riot2,1,321721.realvideo) you see a brief clip of a Korean American on the roof with some longarm defending his shop.

cls12vg30
September 30, 2004, 12:00 AM
All this info has given me a newfound respect for those Korean business owners. They are a shining example of how (legal) immigration enriches our country. We need more citizens like them, who are willing to risk the retribution of unconstitutional laws to defend their property and stand up for their God-given rights.

Here's some racial profiling for you: Koreans are bad-ass. And from what I've seen and heard out of Hyundai, they're even learning how to build decent cars. :D

Skunkabilly
September 30, 2004, 03:25 AM
Korean girls = good
Korean banjos = bad

DRZinn
September 30, 2004, 10:44 AM
Jay Rhee estimated that he and others fired 500 shots into the ground and air.

***? Maybe if they and others aimed a little straighter the riots would have ended sooner. Then again, they may have been arrested, taken to jail, and their shops burned in their absence. Tough choice to make.

moa
September 30, 2004, 04:04 PM
I remember reading many of those press reports, mostly in the Washington Times. IIRC, at least one Korean youth was shot to death by the Korean merchants. It was an accident. The merchants misstoke the car the youth was in for another gang of armed looters.

lbmii
October 1, 2004, 02:41 AM
Can we assume that in the name of PC justice that these folks that armed themselves were punished to the full extent of the law?

Can we assume that they were sued in civil court as well?

Can we assume that every attempt was made to destroy their livelihood?

I have always wondered about the above questions and have never heard any answers.

What came of these Korean-Americans?

http://timmer.org/HISTORY_17B/PowerPoint/la_riots/slide27.jpg

SUE ROVR
October 1, 2004, 04:28 AM
Roits are the reason I have multiple mags and 1000 rounds for every weapon in the house. Plus in PA my permit allows me to carry a loaded rifle during riots (I kid you not!)

I just have to get that Hk91 now . . .

Kharn
October 1, 2004, 12:35 PM
lbmii:
What is that rifle?
It sorta looks like an AR15 magazine, and some sort of underfolding stock, is it a Galil?

Kharn

Skunkabilly
October 1, 2004, 12:57 PM
What is that rifle?
It sorta looks like an AR15 magazine, and some sort of underfolding stock, is it a Galil?


A Daewoo? Don't they come with 100,000 rd warranties now? :D

lbmii
October 1, 2004, 01:00 PM
I think it is a Daewoo K2 also known as MAX-2 AR-100. But I could be wrong.





http://www.twilightarmouries.ca/SmallArms/AssaultRifles/daewoo_k2.jpg

Deadman
October 2, 2004, 02:24 AM
I've done my share of googling for good eyewitness or participatory accounts

Browse through the following thread and read the posts by a Texas Arcane for his LA riots experience.

http://www.aussurvivalist.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=3762&PN=3

joe sixpack
October 2, 2004, 03:20 AM
RangerHaaf:
I remember seeing the videotape of the girl who was shot and killed by the merchant; of course she was shot just after she got finished beating the hell out of the woman behind the counter. Everyone thought this incident would incite more "Rodney King" type outbursts but nothing happened.

If we are talking about the same girl, it happened before the Rodney King
verdict/LA Riots.

Check out this article:
http://racerelations.about.com/gi/dynamic/offsite.htm?site=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.csmonitor.com%2F2002%2F0429%2Fp01s07-ussc.html

"But L.A.'s black community was primed to explode by an earlier incident. Several months prior to the King-beating verdict, Latasha Harlins, a 15-year-old black girl, was shot and killed by a Korean grocer in an altercation over a bottle of orange juice.

The grocer had been found guilty of voluntary manslaughter in the death, but received a sentence of probation. For many poorer African Americans, the verdict was an outrage, and became a symbol of what they considered decades of economic colonialism by Korean store owners who operated in black neighborhoods.

"The No. 1 enemy for us was Koreans, who we felt were oppressing us," says Ali."
The above was said by some POS gangbanging destroyer dude who was interviewed for the story.

News of the police acquittals sparks four days of violence causing 55 deaths, 2,300-plus injuries, and $1 billion in damage. The beating of white trucker Reginald Denny by black rioters is televised live. National Guard, Army, and Marines are called in.


Deadman;
That thread with Tex Arcane providing his running account
of his experience in the riots was very entertaining and brought back
some memories of the riots for me.

However, I suspect his story to be more a product of imagination than experience. I'll let go the "20,000-50,000 people surging" and concentrate on locations. He says he lived in Hollywood, but IIRC there weren't (and still aren't) any Walmarts there, let alone a Walmart Superstore, so not sure how looters would be working that store over. Also he mentions he lived on Martin Way which he says intersects Sunset Blvd. Per my Thomas Guide of 1991 there is no Martin Way even close to Hollywood. The closest would be Martin Ln which is way up in Beverlyhills far from any riots. Perhaps some maid got fed up and raised a stink about her work, but no riot there.


He seems like a nice enough fellow, perhaps he changed the locale to protect his anonymity and if nothing else should be writing for the studios.

cheers, js

Drjones
October 4, 2004, 06:21 PM
For many poorer African Americans, the verdict was an outrage, and became a symbol of what they considered decades of economic colonialism by Korean store owners who operated in black neighborhoods.

"The No. 1 enemy for us was Koreans, who we felt were oppressing us," says Ali."


Oh good freaking lord god.....:rolleyes: :banghead: :banghead: :banghead:


WHO THE HECK GIVES THESE MORONS THESE IDEAS????????

And just for the record, who here HAS NOT oppressed any blacks? Anyone?

I guess I have due to the mere fact that I exist.....:rolleyes:

ALS
October 4, 2004, 07:26 PM
SUE ROVR: Riots are the reason I have multiple mags and 1000 rounds for every weapon in the house. Plus in PA my permit allows me to carry a loaded rifle during riots (I kid you not!) I just have to get that Hk91 now . . .

1000 rounds is that all? That wouldn't last 2 hours in a good fire fight:evil:

FYI I have a HK-91 and it kicks like a horse. I'll take a M1A for pure comfort when expending large quantities of ammo. Plus have you ever seen what a HK does to brass? It ain't pretty. Start thinking about at least 5K to 10K per gun. What is scary is playing with guys that work for the alphabet agencies at shooting school and they talk about having 50K, 75K, 100K rounds in the house. Heck one guy that works for the DIA said he has at least 250K rounds in his basement. :what:

insidious_calm
October 4, 2004, 11:45 PM
WHO THE HECK GIVES THESE MORONS THESE IDEAS????????


Jesse Jackson


And just for the record, who here HAS NOT oppressed any blacks? Anyone?



I don't know, but the 'Rev-rund' 'Jhaaackssun' does more to oppress blacks than anyone I've ever seen. If the mainstream black ever figures that out both the Dems and Jesse Jackson are finished.



I.C.

If you enjoyed reading about "Koreatown use of AR-15s in LA Riots" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!