Photo: CBS News
A snow storm at the winter resort town of Big Bear has hindered police efforts to hunt for an ex-cop who allegedly vowed to take down the LAPD, KTLA 5 reported Friday morning.Police believe former cop Christopher Dorner was on foot in Big Bear about 100 miles northeast of Los Angeles after police identified his burned-out pick-up truck in the area.
Dorner, who was reportedly fired from the department several years ago, is suspected of killing the daughter of an LAPD captain and her fiancé before shooting three police officers, one of whom died.
Photo: via KTLA 5
By nightfall on Thursday, the Big Bear area had turned into a “virtual ghost town,” the LA Times reported early Friday morning.
At least 100 cops were also going door-to-door in the area overnight and searching for fresh tracks in the snow in a bid to catch Dorner, ABC News reported Friday morning.
“He could be anywhere at this point,” San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon said, according to the Times.
Police lost sight of Dorner’s tracks after the snow-covered ground froze.
Police have vowed to redouble their efforts on the ground since they can’t search from the air, according to KTLA. Police revealed in a Friday morning news conference they are using snow chains and Snowcat tractors to search isolated areas on Bear Mountain.
More than 100 officers are still searching for Dorner and police searched throughout the night. Those officers are searching 200 empty cabins that are spread across an 8-square-mile radius on the mountain, police said during an afternoon press conference.
Big Bear Mountain was hosting Armed Forces Day but closed early Friday as a precaution since Dorner was reportedly wearing military gear, according to KTLA 5.
Area residents were barricading their doors by nightfall on Thursday, according to the LA Times.
Police reportedly urged residents not to open their doors to anyone except officers in uniform or someone they know.
“We’re all just stressed,” resident Andrea Burtons told the Times.
He’s a former member of the military with “sniper training,” and police say he’s armed and dangerous, KTLA 5 reported.
Schools in Big Bear remained closed Friday as police searched for Dorner.
In their pursuit of Dorner, police mistakenly shot two innocent women delivering newspapers in Torrance, Calif. early Thursday morning, CBS Los Angeles reported.
One of the women, 71-year-old Emma Hernandez, was still in intensive care late Thursday night after being shot twice in the back, according to the Times. She was delivering newspapers with her 47-year-old daughter Margie Carranza.
A patrol officer was sent to protect the home of a high-ranking officer and says he thought their Toyota Tacoma was Dorner’s Nissan pick-up truck, according to CBS.
Later on Thursday, SWAT officers were combing through rough terrain in the Big Bear area, and ski slopes had been closed by the afternoon, KTLA 5 reported.
Schools in the Big Bear area were also on lockdown.
Here’s a photo from the manhunt:
Photo: KTLA 5
Police also spent time early Friday investigating a reported Dorner sighting in San Diego.
A caller reported seeing Dorner at a home near the Barona Indian Reservation late Thursday night, prompting sheriff’s deputies to rush to the area, The Los Angeles Times’ L.A. Now blog reported early Thursday morning.
However, as of 3:30 a.m. Friday, cops still hadn’t found Dorner on the scene.
“The deputies that are on scene have no indication Dorner was, is or has even been at that residence,” sheriff’s Lt. Jason Rothlein told L.A. Now.
Authorities now believe the call was a hoax after the caller changed his story multiple times and they haven’t found a trace of Dorner, but cops will continue to search the area just to be safe, according to L.A. Now.
“There’s a particular sensitivity here. Obviously it’s not something we can go and overlook,” Rothlein told the blog. “Having a waste of resources over a hoax — if that is in fact what this is — is a horrible waste of our time.”
Dorner is suspected of shooting two Riverside Police Department officers around 1:30 a.m. PST Thursday while they were stopped at a red light, KTLA 5 reported Thursday morning.
One of the Riverside officers was killed and the other is in critical condition and undergoing surgery, according to KTLA 5.
Prior to the Riverside shooting, an LAPD officer was also shot.
Dorner is also suspected of killing Monica Quan, a Cal State Fullerton assistant basketball coach, and her fiance Keith Lawrence, The Los Angeles Times reported Thursday.
Here is a picture of Quan and her Lawrence:
Photo: CBS News
Dorner was fired from the department in 2009 for allegedly making false statements about his training officer, according to the Times.
Department hierarchy considered the timing of Dorner’s complaint to be suspicious.
He filed a complaint after his supervisors said his performance had to improve if he wanted to move up in the department, according to KTLA 5.
Quan’s father is a retired LAPD captain who reportedly became a lawyer in his retirement and represented Dorner in hearings related to his termination. Dorner specifically mentioned Quan’s father in Facebook postings, according to the Times.
“I never had the opportunity to have a family of my own, I’m terminating yours,” Dorner said in online postings, according to L.A. Now.
In an online manifesto, Dorner, who was upset about what he saw as an unjustified firing, called the shooting his “last resort,” according to L.A. Now.
“This is my last resort. The LAPD has suppressed the truth and it has now led to deadly consequences,” he wrote online. “The violence of action will be high. … I will bring unconventional and asymmetrical warfare to those in LAPD uniform whether on or off duty.”
Police said Dorner unsuccessfully tried to steal a boat Wednesday night, before he allegedly shot the police officers, so he could escape to Mexico, the Times reported this morning.
An 81-year-old boat owner said a “burly man” tied him up so he could take his boat but was unable to flee in it because a rope got tangled in a propeller, according to the Times.
Before the alleged rampage, Dorner reportedly made it clear he wanted to bring down as many cops as he could.
Dorner is a former Navy reservist, according to the Times.
Dorner, whose last day in the Navy was Feb. 1, worked with river warfare units and a mobile inshore undersea warfare unit, CNN reported.
His navy records show he was a pistol expert and rifle marksman, according to CNN.
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