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The Los Angeles Riots 1992

A memorial and historical archive of the Los Angeles Riots in 1992 through the lens of those who lost their lives.



The Los Angeles Riots of 1992 has a personal story to me that I only realized after doing research many years later. In order to follow through the events that took place while I was quarantined at home in the midst of the chaos, I created this visualization that had an hour-by-hour record of the events that happened from the beginning of the violence to the end of the violence. The only consequence I personally faced was not being able to get the Flamin' Hot Lays I got at my neighborhood market, Jay's Market, but instead had to go to my dad's friend's liquor store. Little did I know that the liquor store stood because my dad among other Koreans living in Los Angeles, acquired rifles and stood guard on the rooftop to deter looters.

The lives that were lost in the riots were senseless. The Los Angeles Times gathered data including stories of who each person was and how they lost their lives. A memorial is usually created with the names of the honorable who died defending our country or in a tragic event that marks history. I created this visualization in order to memorialize the events, as well as the names of those who died as a means of symbolizing an ongoing tension of power relationships and race relations that still go unresolved. The sense of injustice is what ingnited the city, while little was done to absolve or resolve any of it. It's easy to forget this event when everything is seemingly normal today, but there still lies a growing tension that should not be ignored. With that, this memorial hopes to remind us that we had to go through this tragedy and that we should do a lot more to assure the prevention of another riot like this.


Using the hour-by-hour records published by the Los Angeles Times in “Charting the Hours of Chaos,” supplemented by another publication from the LA Times that had a dataset available for the 64 recorded victims of the riots in “Deaths during the L.A. riots,” I was able to create a memorial combined with a historical record of the events that happened in those five days.

Events that are correlated with the individual victims are chosen by their connection to those events, whether they may have led to their death or if their death led to those events. Some were grouped with events that occured in relation to their specific community.

Photos were selectively chosen to reflect the events as recorded. They are generally placed next to their relevant events, or in groups of similarities.

Events are grouped by days and aligned by hour. Names are listed in chronological order of the day of their death or casualty that led to their eventual death.


  1. Every name can be hovered over to view their story, including their location of death, how they died, and some with a brief background of how they lived.
  2. Names can be clicked to focus on them in the center, then to view the events, images, and Street View related to that person.
  3. Users are encouraged to explore their own story by clicking through the days to see the events and images related to that specific day.


Los Angeles Times Staff, “Charting the Hours of Chaos,” The Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles, CA, April 29, 2002;

Los Angeles Times Staff, “Deaths during the L.A. riots,” The Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles, CA, April 25, 2012;

Photos from various sources: KNBC-TV, Paul J. Richards / PRI, Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times / Getty Images, Mike Nelson / AFP / Getty Images, Bob Riha Jr / Getty Images, OC Register, Rosemary Kaul / Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles Daily News file photo/SCNG, Hal Garb/AFP/Getty Images, Randy Leffingwell / Los Angeles Times, ABC News, Hyungwon Kang/Los Angeles Times/Files/Reuters, Ken Lubas / Los Angeles Times, Steve Dykes / Los Angeles Times, Nick Ut / AP Photo, Lacy Atkins / Los Angeles Times, J. Albert Diaz / Los Angeles Times, Jim Mendenhall / Los Angeles Times, Patrick Downs / Los Angeles Times, John Gaps III / AP Photo, Rick Meyer/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images, John Gaps III / AP Photo, David Longstreath / AP Photo, Kevork Djansezian / AP Photo, Lacy Atkins / Los Angeles Times, Gary Friedman / Los Angeles Times, Randy Leffingwell / Los Angeles Times, LARRY DAVIS / LOS ANGELES TIMES, MARILYN WEISS / LOS ANGELES TIMES, David Butow/Corbis via Getty Images, Paul Sakuma / AP Photo, Dayna Smith/The Washington Post/Getty Images, NBC / Nelson Rolfe on YouTube, LORI SHEPLER / LOS ANGELES TIMES, Marissa Roth / For The Times, Karen Tapia / Los Angeles Times, Visions of America/UIG via Getty Images, Reed Saxon/AP, AP Photo/Chris Martinez, ALBERT DIAZ / LOS ANGELES TIMES, RICK CORRALES / LOS ANGELES TIMES, Iris Schneider/Los Angeles Times, AP Photo/Mark Elias, JONATHAN UTZ/AFP/Getty Images, TONY BARNARD / LOS ANGELES TIMES, Pacific Ties/Kore file, Google Maps Street View, and AL SEIB / LOS ANGELES TIMES


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