Dorner stalked LAPD enemies, did 'homework,' Chief Beck says
This post has been corrected. See note at bottom for details.
Former LAPD Officer Christopher Dorner stalked several Los Angeles police officials named in a manifesto he is believed to have posted online in the weeks leading up to a series of shootings that left four dead and two people wounded, authorities said.
Dorner, 33, died Feb. 12 in a fire that consumed a Big Bear cabin after authorities fired tear gas into the structure where he was barricaded in a bid to end an hours-long gun battle. The standoff began after Dorner stole the car of a Big Bear couple and then engaged in separate shootouts with Fish and Wildlife wardens and San Bernardino County sheriff’s deputies — one of whom was fatally wounded.
The inferno culminated a nine-day manhunt that began after Dorner killed an Irvine couple, including the daughter of a former LAPD captain who had defended him at a disciplinary hearing that ultimately led to his dismissal from the force in 2009.
Law enforcement sources familiar with the case also said in the weeks before the Irvine slayings, Dorner visited the homes of several LAPD officials but did not elaborate on the nature of the surveillance or whether there was any face-to-fact contact with the ex-LAPD officer.
“We believe, based on our investigation, that Dorner did a lot of homework,” Chief Charlie Beck said at a news conference at LAPD headquarters Monday. “That homework no doubt included physical surveillance.”
LAPD Capt. Phil Tingirides, who appeared with Beck on Monday along with his wife, LAPD Sgt. Emada Tingirides, said he had never seen Dorner at his home but described the tense days during the manhunt when his family was under 24-hour guard, getting intermittent sleep and trying to calm their children.
“The information coming in was overwhelming,” Tingirides said. “We shut the TV off.”
Beck said San Bernardino sheriff's officials acted appropriately in tackling Dorner at the cabin, where authorities believe he shot himself as the structure caught fire after hot gas canister were fired into the building. "We use that gas without a fire all the time," Beck said.
As for the $1-million reward, Beck said he'd like to see it paid out but that the process was complicated by differing rules enforced by those who contributed to the sum -- 31 in all.
"Some municipalities have rules.... The private contributions -- the rules are more liberal," Beck said. "It is more complicated than me coming out with a big check," Beck said.
He said his chief of detectives will put together a detailed review of all the investigations and make a recommendation on the reward.
[For the Record, 1:52 p.m. Feb. 19,: A previous version of this post stated incorrectly that Dorner died Thursday; he died Tuesday, Feb. 12.]
--Andrew Blankstein and Richard Winton