Remembering the unjust racist verdict that led to Florida’s largest ever urban riots

In 1980 the City of Miami erupted with the worst urban riots in the United States since the Watts riots of 1965. But what led to these riots was an unjust “not-guilty” verdict in the trial of several police officers accused of killing Arthur McDuffie. The trial which was moved from Miami to Tampa featured an all-male and all-white jury. Below is a detailed look back at the events that led to the riots including a look at the history of Overtown BEFORE the building of I-95 destroyed the once vibrant African-American neighborhood. The video below is from the PBS Series “Eyes on the Prize” which I first watched in High School in the early 1990s and have watched several times since. Narration is by Julian Bond.


  1. Once a D now an R · · Reply

    Of course the wannabe Africans rioted when things didn’t go their way. What Krishnaiyer himself an anti-white racist won’t say us that this boy was fleeing the cops going at a high speed. He got what was coming to him.

    What does NAACP stand for?



  2. Florida Republican · · Reply

    KKs almost constant obsession with race is pathetic. He is the true racist with his constant attacks on north Florida and the history of the Democrats. We are now Republicans because of the blacks and latins.


  3. Notice how when the blacks kill a white we never riot in the streets but when they think a white kills a black you have millions of $$$ in property damage.

    This is a racist site.


  4. I am about as white as you can get, and I think you are all either full of crap, or don’t want to admit that what Kartik is saying is true.


  5. Patti Lynn · · Reply

    Leonard Pitts, a Miami Herald columnist had an EXCELLENT article in the Issues & Ideas section of today’s Herald. I am saddened that some of those commenting on this post are attacking the author, and not the actual story. Racism and prejudice DOES exist, and it is so inculcated into our lives, that we are not able to recognize it for what it is. We are making steps, but the “Giant Leap” is going to be just recognizing that racism is there…every day…and affecting many of our interactions with others. Keep at it Kartik. Information is knowledge and knowledge will change the world.


  6. […] year, we featured the final installment of the second series of Eyes on the Prize because it revolved around race relations in Miami. But […]


  7. […] look back at Florida’s history with urban racial strife in the 1980’s and 1990’s. The 1980 Miami riots were the worst urban riots in the United States between the end of the Civil Rights era and the 1992 post-Rodney King verdict LA […]


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