Rodney King has been arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence in Southern California.
Mr King, 46, was the black motorist whose beating by four white police officers in 1991 exposed racial wounds and led to devastating riots in Los Angeles.
The Moreno Valley Police Department said officers pulled King over on Tuesday night after seeing him commit several alleged traffic violations. Courtney Donowho, a spokeswoman for the Riverside County Sheriff, said no arraignment date had been set.
A member of the public had filmed the attack on Mr King in 1991 and then passed on the footage; the video showed the police officers beating Mr King with a baton when he was lying on the ground.
Mr King has had several scrapes with the law in the 20 years since the incident and has struggled publicly with sobriety by appearing on the reality show Celebrity Rehab.