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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California
L.A. Riots: 20 Years Later

L.A. Riots: TV Journalist Remembers

FOX 11 reporter Hal Eisner shares his experience covering the 1992 riots.

Fox 11 News veteran Hal Eisner had never experienced anything like the L.A Riots in over 30 years of TV News coverage.

"It was chaotic, it was scary," he said. "There was a lot of tension."

The night that the verdict was read, Eisner was at a church in South Central L.A. about to interview some ministers. They sat together watching the monitors in the news truck as the video of Reginald Denny being pummeled happend live on TV.

"I looked over at the ministers and the ministers looked at me, and they said, 'it's all over.'"

Eisner described seeing sofas on fire in the middle of the street as he drove back to the news station.

"You could see pillars of smoke, columns, coming up all around the city," he said. "It was a terrifying, terrifying thing to see."

Cynthia Griffin, the Managing Editor of Our Weekly, described being in L.A. during the riots as tense and scary.  Griffin was at the corner of Adams and La Brea when she noticed a car filled with Caucasians start to get heckled by surrounding cars. They immediately got onto the freeway to get away.

"It was really surreal," Griffin said.

RELATED: 

Residents Remember L.A. Riots

L.A. Riots Remembered Across the City

L.A. Riots: Reporter Relives Experience

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