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California Man Hunt for Christopher Dorner

The Los Angeles Police Department and other law enforcement units are searching for Christopher Dorner, a renegade former police officer they say has killed three people in a self-proclaimed war on his old department.

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Big Bear Lake, California (CNN) — The ex-cop suspected in the killings of an officer and two others remained at large Friday as darkness fell over a mountain forest and police suspended their manhunt until Saturday morning.

“Once it gets dark out there and the snow keeps falling and they have no air support, I don’t know how effective they would be in that situation,” spokeswoman Cindy Bachman of the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department said.

Throughout Friday, more than 100 officers searched through fresh snow for clues to the whereabouts of Christopher Jordan Dorner, 33, a fired Los Angeles Police Department officer and former Navy lieutenant suspected in the three killings.

Dorner allegedly wrote a manifesto declaring a war of revenge on police, authorities said.

By Friday night, police were expected to have completed a search of vacant cabins in the snowpacked forest of the San Bernardino Mountains near the resort town of Big Bear Lake, Bachman said.

Police on Thursday searched 400 homes in the Big Bear Lake area and were completing searches of 200 more on Friday, she said. Overnight patrols in the town were to be beefed up with 12 extra two-officer teams, she said.

“The search is continuing,” Bachman said. “First of all, they have to rest. They have been going at this for two days.”

Police teams were dressed in snow gear, holding the trigger guards on their assault-style rifles while scouring eight square miles near Big Bear Lake, a popular skiing area two hours east of Los Angeles.

The mountains were the focus of Friday’s search effort because police had found Dorner’s burned-out pickup truck a day earlier near the resort community.

The truck had a broken axle, which would have prevented the vehicle from moving, and footprints appear to show that Dorner doubled back into the community, said a source with knowledge of the investigation.

It was unclear where Dorner may have gone from there or by what means, the source said.

But Bachman told reporters Friday: “The possibility exists that he is here, somewhere in the forest, so we’re going to keep looking…until we determine that he’s not here.”

Guns found in the truck were also burned, but authorities believe Dorner may have as many as 30 guns with him, the source said. Dorner was in the Navy and is trained in counterinsurgency and intelligence, the source said.

Two inches of snow Friday coated the mountaintop pine trees and roads around Big Bear Lake, leading motorists to use tire chains. Up to six more inches were expected. But the snow was regarded as a godsend because tracking a man on the run would be easier, authorities said.

Despite the intense search, authorities allowed nearby ski resorts to remain open Friday because they don’t believe Dorner is in Big Bear Lake. At one point, a smiling snowboarder whizzed by police and media, seemingly oblivious to an ongoing news conference and the seriousness of the manhunt.

Jay Obernolte, mayor of Big Bear Lake community, described Friday as having “a beautiful winter morning.” Residents weren’t fearful, he said, adding that “many of the people here are armed.”

“Is there panic in our community?” Obernolte asked reporters rhetorically. “No, there is no panic. We’re a hardy people in the San Bernardino Mountains.”

San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon said the snowfall slowed some searching done by foot, but police pushed onward.

“The snow is great for tracking folks, as well as looking at each individual cabin to see if there’s any sign of forced entry,” McMahon said.

“We’re going to continue searching until we either discover he left the mountain or we find him,” he added. “It’s extremely dangerous.”

The county jail in downtown Los Angeles was in lockdown Friday as a precaution after a civilian female employee of the Twin Towers Correctional Facility spotted someone fitting Dorner’s description, said Los Angelese County sheriff’s spokesman Steve Whitmore.

U.S. Navy installations throughout California and Nevada were “maintaining a heightened security posture,” a U.S. military official told CNN.

“Security personnel are on the lookout” for Dorner, the official said. The measure was ordered overnight by Rear Adm. Dixon Smith, commander of the Navy’s southwest region.

The official declined to discuss security procedures, but said the move was made after it became clear that Dorner earlier this week gained access to the Naval Base at Point Loma and stayed in a motel there.

Two sailors reported that he approached them Wednesday and spoke with them for about 10 minutes. The conversation took place at a coastal “riverine” unit in San Diego where Dorner served in 2006. As a Navy reservist, Dorner held security jobs with that unit.

The Navy is not certain whether Dorner still possesses any military identification he might try to use to enter a facility. The official said an investigation is under way to determine what military identification he might have.

Dorner underwent flight training in 2009 at Naval Air Station Fallon in Nevada before serving in San Diego.

In La Palma, California, about 22 miles southeast of Los Angeles, police searched Friday the home of Dorner’s mother, where she and a daughter were cooperating with investigators, said Lt. Bill Whalen of the Irvine Police Department.

The 270-pound former Navy lieutenant promised to bring “unconventional and asymmetrical warfare” to police officers and their families, calling it the “last resort” to clear his name and retaliate at a department that he says mistreated him.

Dorner is wanted in the killings on Sunday of two people in Irvine and in the shooting of three Los Angeles-area police officers Thursday, one of whom died.

One of the victims of the Irvine killings, Monica Quan, was the daughter of the retired police officer who represented Dorner in his efforts to get his job back, police said.

“My opinion of the suspect is unprintable,” Riverside police Chief Sergio Diaz said, hours after one of his officers was killed. “The manifesto, I think, speaks for itself (as) evidence of a depraved and abandoned mind and heart.”

Here’s what is known so far:

– Dorner, who worked as an LAPD officer from 2005 to 2008, is accused of killing Quan and her fiance Sunday in Irvine, then shooting two Riverside police officers and an LAPD officer Thursday. Police say he unleashed numerous rounds at the Riverside officers, riddling their car with bullets and killing a 34-year-old officer. The second officer in the car was seriously wounded, and the LAPD officer suffered only minor injuries, police said.

– In a lengthy letter provided by police, Dorner said he had been unfairly fired by the LAPD after reporting another officer for police brutality. He decried what he called a continuing culture of racism and violence within the department, and called attacks on police and their families “a necessary evil that I do not enjoy but must partake and complete for substantial change to occur within the LAPD and reclaim my name.”

– Leads have taken police from Los Angeles to San Diego to Las Vegas to Big Bear Lake, where police found the charred carcass of Dorner’s gray pickup. Police had found no trace of him Friday, the San Bernadino County sheriff said. Trackers lost footprints believed to be Dorner’s in a wooded area near the truck.

– The LAPD and other agencies have gone to extremes to protect officers. Forty teams of officers were guarding people named as targets in Dorner’s letter. On Thursday, one of the teams shot at a pickup that resembled Dorner’s but turned out to be a Los Angeles Times newspaper delivery vehicle.

– Despite Dorner’s statement in the letter that “when the truth comes out, the killing stops,” Los Angeles police Chief Charlie Beck said authorities don’t plan to apologize to Dorner or attempt to clear his name. Dorner’s firing, Beck said Thursday, had already been “thoroughly reviewed.”

– In Nevada on Thursday, FBI agents searched Dorner’s Las Vegas home. The search forced some of Dorner’s neighbors out of their homes for several hours, CNN affiliate KLAS reported.

“It’s too close to home. It’s kind of scary,” neighbor Dan Gomez told KLAS.

A message to the media

In addition to posting his manifesto online, Dorner mailed a parcel to AC360 Anchor Anderson Cooper’s office at CNN in New York.

The package arrived on February 1 and was opened by Cooper’s assistant. Inside was a hand-labeled DVD, accompanied by a yellow Post-it note reading, in part, “I never lied” — apparently in reference to his 2008 dismissal from the LAPD.

The package also contained a coin wrapped in duct tape. The tape bears the handwritten inscription: “Thanks, but no thanks, Will Bratton.” It also had letters that may be read as “IMOA,” which could be a commonly used Internet abbreviation for “Imagine a More Open America,” or possibly “1 MOA,” which means one minute of angle, perhaps implying Dorner was accurate with a firearm.

The coin is a souvenir medallion from former LAPD Chief William Bratton, of a type often given out as keepsakes. This one, though, was shot through with bullet holes: three bullet holes to the center and one that nicked off the top.

The editorial staff of AC360 and CNN management were made aware of the package Thursday. Upon learning of its existence, they alerted Bratton and law enforcement.

Bratton headed the LAPD at the time Dorner was dismissed.

CNN’s Michael Pearson, AnneClaire Stapleton, Deborah Feyerick, Sara Weisfeldt, Barbara Starr, Pete Janos, Mallory Simon, Brad Lendon, Deanna Hackney, Greg Botelho and Dana Ford contributed to this report. Paul Vercammen reported from Big Bear Lake and Michael Martinez reported and wrote in Los Angeles.

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A former Los Angeles cop with military training vowed war against other men in blue Thursday, leaving one officer dead days after he allegedly killed two other people to begin a wave of retribution for being fired, police said.

Jittery police searched a huge swath of Southern California, from San Diego to Los Angeles to Riverside to Big Bear, looking for any sign of Christopher Jordan Dorner.

He’s a 270-pound former Navy lieutenant professing his venom against LAPD officers he claimed ruined his life by forcing him out of his dream job, then threatened them, their families and, in fact, any other police officer in any locale.

Thursday morning’s shootings of a Riverside police officer and two other officers came one day after Irvine, California, police named Dorner a suspect in the double slayings of a woman — identified by Los Angeles police as the daughter of a retired LAPD officer — and her fiance.

Dorner blamed the retired officer for bungling his appeal to get his job back, according to an 11-page manifesto he wrote complaining of mistreatment by the LAPD. In that letter — provided to CNN by an LAPD source — Dorner vowed to wage a violent war of retribution against police officers and their families.

“I will bring unconventional and asymmetrical warfare to those in LAPD uniform whether on or off duty,” Dorner wrote in the letter.

“I never had the opportunity to have a family of my own, I’m terminating yours.”

The fear was apparent Thursday in downtown Los Angeles, as police wearing body armor patrolled outside their own iconic headquarters. Commanders issued orders to keep all of the department’s officers on duty.

Some 100 miles east in and around Big Bear City, meanwhile, the Bear Mountain ski resort shut down and area schools were on lockdown Thursday afternoon as officers converged on a burning vehicle that matched the suspect’s, said a law enforcement source with direct knowledge of and participation in the search. It was not immediately known if the vehicle belonged to Dorner, said San Bernardino Sheriff’s spokeswoman Jodi Miller, who added no person or body was found around it.

And the mood was somber in Riverside, where two police officers had been shot earlier, and one died. Police there sealed off intersections, for a time patrolling with rifles hoisted to their shoulders.

“My opinion of the suspect is unprintable,” said Riverside police Chief Sergio Diaz, who added the suspect or his case has “no connection” to his city. “The manifesto, I think, speaks for itself (as) evidence of a depraved and abandoned mind and heart.”

Police also were on edge Thursday around the area, including in Torrance, where Los Angeles police Chief Charlie Beck said LAPD officers guarding one of Dorner’s alleged targets mistakenly opened fire on a blue pickup truck that resembled one Dorner is said to be driving.

The gunfire left two people wounded, Beck said. Torrance police also fired on another blue pickup, but no one was injured in that incident, according to a senior law enforcement source.

Police have good reason to be fearful, the chief said.

“Of course he knows what he’s doing. We trained him,” Beck said. “He was also a member of the armed forces. It is extremely worrisome and scary, especially to the officers involved.”

1 cop dies in ‘cowardly ambush’

It all started Sunday when Dorner allegedly killed two people in Irvine, according to police.

Police identified the victims as Monica Quan and her fiance Keith Lawrence.

Quan, 27, was the daughter of retired Los Angeles police officer Randal Quan, LAPD Officer Tenesha Dobine confirmed to CNN. In his letter, Dorner said Quan had handled his appeal.

On Tuesday, Dormer checked into the Navy Gateway Inns and Suites on San Diego’s massive naval base, Cmdr. Brad Fagan said. Dormer likely had access to the hotel from having been honorably discharged from the Navy Reserve — which would mean he’d have an ID card — said the Navy spokesman.

“He did not physically check out” Wednesday as expected, Fagan told reporters Thursday, while adding “we don’t have any reason to believe he’s (still) on the base.”

Police in San Diego say a man who could have been Dorner tried to hijack a boat there on Wednesday. Someone later found a wallet containing Dorner’s identification and an LAPD detective’s badge near the San Diego airport, according to police. It was unclear whether the badge was legitimate.

By about 1 a.m. Thursday, the scene had shifted about 100 miles north to Corona, California.

There, a pair of LAPD officers on a protection detail were flagged down by a citizen who reported seeing the suspect’s vehicle, LAPD Deputy Chief Jose Perez said.

The officers chased the vehicle and caught up to it on an off-ramp on Interstate 15.

“The officers were fired upon with a shoulder weapon,” Perez said, with one of them suffering a “graze wound” to his head. The police returned fire, while the suspect set off once again.

About 20 minutes later, two police officers were in their car at a stop light in Riverside when what’s believed to be Doren pulled up beside them.

That driver unleashed “multiple rounds” from a rifle at the officers, riddling the cop car with bullets and leaving a 34-year-old officer, who had been on the Riverside force for 11 years, dead, according to Diaz. The other officer, 27, was “seriously wounded but we expect a full recovery,” the Riverside police chief said.

It was “a cowardly ambush,” Diaz said.

A good Samaritan picked up one of their police radios and called dispatchers to send help, Riverside police said.

Suspect calls attacks ‘a necessary evil’

In addition to posting his manifesto online, Dorner reached out directly to CNN, mailing a parcel to AC360 anchor Anderson Cooper’s office at CNN in New York.

The package arrived on February 1 and was opened by Cooper’s assistant. Inside was a hand-labeled DVD, accompanied by a yellow Post-it note reading, in part, “I never lied” — apparently in reference to his 2008 dismissal from the LAPD.

The package also contained a coin wrapped in duct tape. The tape bears the hand-written inscription: “Thanks, but no thanks, Will Bratton,” as well as the letters “IMOA,” which may be a commonly used Internet abbreviation for “Imagine a More Open America.”

As for the coin, it is a souvenir medallion from former LAPD Chief William Bratton, of a type often given out as keepsakes. This one, though, was shot through with bullet holes: three bullet holes to the center and another shot nicked off the top.

The editorial staff of AC360 and CNN management were made aware of the package Thursday. Upon learning of its existence, they alerted Bratton and law enforcement.

Bratton headed the LAPD at the time Dorner was dismissed.

Dorner is a former U.S. Navy Reserve lieutenant who worked with river warfare units and a mobile inshore undersea warfare unit, among other assignments, according to Pentagon records obtained by CNN. He also provided security on oil platforms in Iraq.

He was rated as a rifle marksman and pistol expert, according to the records. His last day in the Navy was February 1.

After the police department’s Board of Rights rejected his appeal of his firing, he took the case to court. A judge ruled against his appeal in October 2011, according to court records.

Beck, the Los Angeles police chief, said Thursday that Dorner’s case had been “thoroughly reviewed” and said the department would not apologize to Dorner or clear his name.

In his manifesto, Dorner complained that he had been railroaded out of the department after reporting police brutality by another officer. He also complained of a continuing culture of racism and brutality in the LAPD.

He said attacks are “a necessary evil that I do not enjoy but must partake and complete for substantial change to occur within the LAPD and reclaim my name.”

Dorner warned police in his letter to “look your wives/husbands and surviving children directly in the face and tell them the truth as to why your children are dead.”

Such a chilling warning prompted Los Angeles police to set up 40 protective details in an effort to safeguard people listed in Dorner’s letter, Beck said.

He acknowledged it was taxing the department, which has been placed under tactical alert, meaning all officers must stay on duty.

“It’s extremely, extremely manpower intensive,” Beck said. “But the safety of my employees, people that come on the job to protect the lives of strangers, is extremely important to me and I will expend whatever resource is necessary.”

A college classmate of Dorner’s, James Usera, described the suspect as “smart and insightful” — and urged him to give up.

“No good can come out of it,” Usera told CNN. “Turn yourself in and get this resolved.”
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With Checked :
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2013-02-07 17:19:45

LOS ANGELES (CNN) — A former Los Angeles cop with military training vowed war against other men in blue Thursday, leaving one officer dead days after he allegedly killed two other people to begin a wave of retribution for being fired, police said.

Jittery police searched a huge swath of Southern California, from San Diego to Los Angeles to Riverside to Big Bear, looking for any sign of Christopher Jordan Dorner.

He’s a 270-pound former Navy lieutenant professing his venom against LAPD officers he claimed ruined his life by forcing him out of his dream job, then threatened them, their families and, in fact, any other police officer in any locale.

Thursday morning’s shootings of a Riverside police officer and two other officers came one day after Irvine, California, police named Dorner a suspect in the double slayings of a woman — identified by Los Angeles police as the daughter of a retired LAPD officer — and her fiance.

Dorner blamed the retired officer for bungling his appeal to get his job back, according to an 11-page manifesto he wrote complaining of mistreatment by the LAPD. In that letter — provided to CNN by an LAPD source — Dorner vowed to wage a violent war of retribution against police officers and their families.

“I will bring unconventional and asymmetrical warfare to those in LAPD uniform whether on or off duty,” Dorner wrote in the letter.

“I never had the opportunity to have a family of my own, I’m terminating yours.”

The fear was apparent Thursday in downtown Los Angeles, as police wearing body armor patrolled outside their own iconic headquarters. Commanders issued orders to keep all of the department’s officers on duty.

Some 100 miles east in and around Big Bear City, meanwhile, the Bear Mountain ski resort shut down and area schools were on lockdown Thursday afternoon as officers converged on a burning vehicle that matched the suspect’s, said a law enforcement source with direct knowledge of and participation in the search. It was not immediately known if the vehicle belonged to Dorner, said San Bernardino Sheriff’s spokeswoman Jodi Miller, who added no person or body was found around it.

And the mood was somber in Riverside, where two police officers had been shot earlier, and one died. Police there sealed off intersections, for a time patrolling with rifles hoisted to their shoulders.

“My opinion of the suspect is unprintable,” said Riverside police Chief Sergio Diaz, who added the suspect or his case has “no connection” to his city. “The manifesto, I think, speaks for itself (as) evidence of a depraved and abandoned mind and heart.”

Police also were on edge Thursday around the area, including in Torrance, where Los Angeles police Chief Charlie Beck said LAPD officers guarding one of Dorner’s alleged targets mistakenly opened fire on a blue pickup truck that resembled one Dorner is said to be driving.

The gunfire left two people wounded, Beck said. Torrance police also fired on another blue pickup, but no one was injured in that incident, according to a senior law enforcement source.

Police have good reason to be fearful, the chief said.

“Of course he knows what he’s doing. We trained him,” Beck said. “He was also a member of the armed forces. It is extremely worrisome and scary, especially to the officers involved.”

1 cop dies in ‘cowardly ambush’

It all started Sunday when Dorner allegedly killed two people in Irvine, according to police.

Police identified the victims as Monica Quan and her fiance Keith Lawrence.

Quan, 27, was the daughter of retired Los Angeles police officer Randal Quan, LAPD Officer Tenesha Dobine confirmed to CNN. In his letter, Dorner said Quan had handled his appeal.

On Tuesday, Dormer checked into the Navy Gateway Inns and Suites on San Diego’s massive naval base, Cmdr. Brad Fagan said. Dormer likely had access to the hotel from having been honorably discharged from the Navy Reserve — which would mean he’d have an ID card — said the Navy spokesman.

“He did not physically check out” Wednesday as expected, Fagan told reporters Thursday, while adding “we don’t have any reason to believe he’s (still) on the base.”

Police in San Diego say a man who could have been Dorner tried to hijack a boat there on Wednesday. Someone later found a wallet containing Dorner’s identification and an LAPD detective’s badge near the San Diego airport, according to police. It was unclear whether the badge was legitimate.

By about 1 a.m. Thursday, the scene had shifted about 100 miles north to Corona, California.

There, a pair of LAPD officers on a protection detail were flagged down by a citizen who reported seeing the suspect’s vehicle, LAPD Deputy Chief Jose Perez said.

The officers chased the vehicle and caught up to it on an off-ramp on Interstate 15.

“The officers were fired upon with a shoulder weapon,” Perez said, with one of them suffering a “graze wound” to his head. The police returned fire, while the suspect set off once again.

About 20 minutes later, two police officers were in their car at a stop light in Riverside when what’s believed to be Doren pulled up beside them.

That driver unleashed “multiple rounds” from a rifle at the officers, riddling the cop car with bullets and leaving a 34-year-old officer, who had been on the Riverside force for 11 years, dead, according to Diaz. The other officer, 27, was “seriously wounded but we expect a full recovery,” the Riverside police chief said.

It was “a cowardly ambush,” Diaz said.

A good Samaritan picked up one of their police radios and called dispatchers to send help, Riverside police said.

Suspect calls attacks ‘a necessary evil’

In addition to posting his manifesto online, Dorner reached out directly to CNN, mailing a parcel to AC360 anchor Anderson Cooper’s office at CNN in New York.

The package arrived on February 1 and was opened by Cooper’s assistant. Inside was a hand-labeled DVD, accompanied by a yellow Post-it note reading, in part, “I never lied” — apparently in reference to his 2008 dismissal from the LAPD.

The package also contained a coin wrapped in duct tape. The tape bears the hand-written inscription: “Thanks, but no thanks, Will Bratton,” as well as the letters “IMOA,” which may be a commonly used Internet abbreviation for “Imagine a More Open America.”

As for the coin, it is a souvenir medallion from former LAPD Chief William Bratton, of a type often given out as keepsakes. This one, though, was shot through with bullet holes: three bullet holes to the center and another shot nicked off the top.

The editorial staff of AC360 and CNN management were made aware of the package Thursday. Upon learning of its existence, they alerted Bratton and law enforcement.

Bratton headed the LAPD at the time Dorner was dismissed.

Dorner is a former U.S. Navy Reserve lieutenant who worked with river warfare units and a mobile inshore undersea warfare unit, among other assignments, according to Pentagon records obtained by CNN. He also provided security on oil platforms in Iraq.

He was rated as a rifle marksman and pistol expert, according to the records. His last day in the Navy was February 1.

After the police department’s Board of Rights rejected his appeal of his firing, he took the case to court. A judge ruled against his appeal in October 2011, according to court records.

Beck, the Los Angeles police chief, said Thursday that Dorner’s case had been “thoroughly reviewed” and said the department would not apologize to Dorner or clear his name.

In his manifesto, Dorner complained that he had been railroaded out of the department after reporting police brutality by another officer. He also complained of a continuing culture of racism and brutality in the LAPD.

He said attacks are “a necessary evil that I do not enjoy but must partake and complete for substantial change to occur within the LAPD and reclaim my name.”

Dorner warned police in his letter to “look your wives/husbands and surviving children directly in the face and tell them the truth as to why your children are dead.”

Such a chilling warning prompted Los Angeles police to set up 40 protective details in an effort to safeguard people listed in Dorner’s letter, Beck said.

He acknowledged it was taxing the department, which has been placed under tactical alert, meaning all officers must stay on duty.

“It’s extremely, extremely manpower intensive,” Beck said. “But the safety of my employees, people that come on the job to protect the lives of strangers, is extremely important to me and I will expend whatever resource is necessary.”

A college classmate of Dorner’s, James Usera, described the suspect as “smart and insightful” — and urged him to give up.

“No good can come out of it,” Usera told CNN. “Turn yourself in and get this resolved.”

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