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2/12/2013 5:12:00 PM
Police: Dorner trapped in cabin

BIG BEAR, Calif. (AP) - A fugitive ex-Los Angeles police officer sought in three killings was believed barricaded in a cabin Tuesday after a furious gunbattle with police in the snow-covered mountains of Southern California, authorities said, the culmination of an intensive manhunt that left a region on edge for nearly a week.

Two officers were injured and were being airlifted to a hospital, the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department said. The extent of their injuries wasn't known.

Officers have been swarming the snow-covered Big Bear region since Thursday, when they found the burned-out pickup truck of Christopher Dorner. The former Navy reservist killed a former police captain's daughter and her fiance and a Riverside officer, and injured two other officers, police said, promising to bring "warfare" to Los Angeles police and their family members.

But, until Tuesday, authorities didn't know whether Dorner was still near Big Bear or had fled, and thousands of officers were searching for him across three states and Mexico.

At a midafternoon news conference, LAPD Cmdr. Andrew Smith said he could not confirm whether Dorner was in the cabin but urged the fugitive to surrender.

"Enough is enough," Smith said. "It's time for you to turn yourself in. It's time to end the bloodshed."

The developments in the nearly weeklong massive manhunt began about 12:20 p.m. Tuesday when deputies in the Big Bear area got a report of a stolen vehicle in the area, the sheriff's office said. The people whose vehicle was stolen described the suspect as looking similar to Dorner.

When authorities found the vehicle, the suspect, believed to be Dorner, ran into the forest and barricaded himself inside a cabin. A short time later there was an exchange of gunfire between law enforcement and the suspect.

U.S. Forest Service spokesman John Miller said the gunfight began with California Department of Fish and Wildlife game wardens at 12:42 p.m. Tuesday, which is about 20 minutes after a vehicle was reported stolen nearby.

After the initial exchange, there was a second battle with San Bernardino County Sheriff's deputies, two of whom were wounded, he said.

Authorities have not released information on the extent of their injuries.

It's also believed Dorner committed a residential burglary of a cabin where a couple was tied up, an officer told The Associated Press.

The officer requested anonymity because the officer was not authorized to speak publicly about the ongoing investigation.

One of the people was able to get away and make a call. It's not clear if that's the same person who called police about the carjacking.

Road blocks were set up around Big Bear.

The shootout occurred in Seven Oaks off Highway 38, about five miles as the crow flies from where Dorner's pickup was found. A ridge with peaks topping 8,000 feet lies between the locations. By road, the two areas are about 30 miles apart.

The former Navy reservist began his run from the law on Feb. 6 after authorities connected the slayings of a former police captain's daughter and her fiance with an angry manifesto they said Dorner posted on Facebook. He vowed to bring "warfare" to Los Angeles police and their family members, which led the department to assign officers to guard more than 50 families connected to his so-called targets.

Within hours of the release of photos of the 6-foot, 270-pounder described as armed and "extremely dangerous," Dorner allegedly unsuccessfully tried to steal a boat in San Diego to flee to Mexico and then ambushed police in Riverside County, shooting three and killing one.

Jumpy officers guarding one of his targets in Torrance on Thursday shot and injured two women delivering newspapers because they mistook their pickup truck for Dorner's.

The hunt for Dorner appeared to go cold after his burned-out pickup was found later that morning in the mountains east of Los Angeles and his footprints disappeared on frozen ground.

Police found charred weapons and camping gear inside the truck, but it wasn't clear if he had fled into the San Bernardino Mountains near the resort town of Big Bear Lake or left the area.

Helicopters using heat-seeking technology searched the forest from above while scores of officers, some using bloodhounds, scoured the ground and checked hundreds of vacation cabins - many vacant this time of year - in the area. A snowstorm hindered the search and may have helped cover his tracks, though authorities were hopeful he would leave fresh footprints if hiding in the wilderness.

Dorner's beef with the department dated back at least five years, when he was fired for filing a false report accusing his training officer of kicking a mentally ill suspect. Dorner, who is black, claimed in his manifesto that he was the subject of racism by the department and fired for doing the right thing.

He said he would get even with those who wronged him in an event to reclaim his good name.

"You're going to see what a whistleblower can do when you take everything from him especially his NAME!!!" he wrote. "You have awoken a sleeping giant."

Chief Charlie Beck, who initially dismissed the allegations in Dorner's rant, said he would reopen the investigation into his firing - not to appease the ex-officer, but to restore confidence in the black community, which long had a fractured relationship with police that has improved in recent years.

One of the targets listed in the manifesto was former LAPD Capt. Randal Quan, who represented Dorner before the disciplinary board. Dorner claimed he put the interests of the department above his.

The first victims were Quan's daughter, Monica Quan, 28, a college basketball coach, and her fiance, Keith Lawrence, 27, who were shot multiple times in their car in a parking garage near their condo.

Dorner served in the Navy, earning a rifle marksman ribbon and pistol expert medal. He was assigned to a naval undersea warfare unit and various aviation training units, according to military records. He took leave from the LAPD for a six-month deployment to Bahrain in 2006 and 2007.

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Reader Comments

Posted: Friday, February 15, 2013
Article comment by: Jimi Lightfoot

Dorner and his fans thought he was a victim of racism.

And why not?

From the day he was born he has been told that because of his race he would fail without help from well-meaning white people and government “Equality” programs.

His future depended on HOW MUCH he was discriminated against.

The media insinuates and bolsters racist motives whenever possible.

Media and the liberal take this Cause-Celeb issue further by manipulation of any situation that can be twisted and exaggerated into a race issue.

The Democratic Party has made racism their platform.

Why not blame racism? It is programed into every mind from the first day a young black man’s expectations aren’t met.

The reality is it wasn’t race that ended Dorner’s military career, it was failure and body fat percentage. It wasn’t race that ended Dorner’s police career it was office politics and crossing the “Blue Line.”

It is the liberal, the media and the Democratic Party that’s the face of racism and promoters’ of racism in America.

The liberal sees and treats every minority as children needing special programs and protections against a bullying white world.

The liberal is happy to visit minority enclaves while keeping minorities at arm’s length, exiling them to the reservations or urban neighborhoods.

Liberals don’t want them living next door.

The liberal likes the tamed and grateful minority.

Liberals magnanimously adopt from third world African nations instead of inner city Chicago orphanages. (How’d you like your adoptive parents holding THAT over your ungrateful head?)

The fact is Dorner had more opportunities given to him BECAUSE of his race.

He washed out of programs that normally ended anyone’s military career. But BECAUSE of his race he was given opportunity after opportunity. All were opportunities for failure.

No wonder he was angry.

Posted: Friday, February 15, 2013
Article comment by: pl .....

it's just great how society closes in on someone who finally melts down - after that person has gone everywhere trying to get things right. Been there, done that. Details different, but principles the same. The hell with the law. Got a problem with that? Just don't let me know by means of your criminal belly-crawlers, or surreptitious residential break-ins.

Posted: Friday, February 15, 2013
Article comment by: Capt. Nice

The more I read your letter the sicker it makes me as what part of being a killer don't you understand?
If he hadn't killed people that did him no harm, it would have been okay with the

Posted: Thursday, February 14, 2013
Article comment by: Nice Chuckle

@Capt Nice

"the way this country is going the left will demand a "Christopher Dorner" Day!
Nothing this man did is justifiable as hard as some try....if he had been white, I wonder if they would feel the same way?"

Sorry, most conspiracy theorists and such are Republicans, not Democrats.

And playing the race card, really?

Posted: Thursday, February 14, 2013
Article comment by: Capt. Nice

the way this country is going the left will demand a "Christopher Dorner" Day!
Nothing this man did is justifiable as hard as some try....if he had been white, I wonder if they would feel the same way?

Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2013
Article comment by: Robert Day


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