Watts Race Riot

On 11th August, 1965, two African Americans were arrested by white police officers for a minor vehicle violation in Watts, a small neighbourhood in Los Angeles. Local youths believed that the police officers had been influenced by the race of the two men and quickly surrounded the police car. When the police sent reinforcement into Watts they were attacked with stones and bottles. The incident developed into a riot and there was considerable looting and a large number of businesses were fire-bombed. It was not until 16th August that the National Guard was able to regain control of the Watts area. In that time 34 people were killed and property damage was estimated at around 40 million dollars.