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Manhunt in Big Bear continues for alleged cop killer

By Rich Tarpening, Assignment Manager, Rich.Tarpening@kesq.com
Published On: Feb 07 2013 03:30:40 PM CST
Updated On: Feb 07 2013 02:00:00 AM CST
Big Bear, Calif. -

Police held a late news conference to alert the media that they still have not located alleged cop killer Christopher Dorner, after finding his truck burning in the Big Bear area Thursday afternoon.

Thursday afternoon police shut down Bear Mountain Ski Resort and placed all the schools in the area in lock down while they searched the area for Dorner, who they believed was still in the area.

Police also say they have staged patrols along the mountain roadways on the lookout for Dorner, just in case he escaped the area.  The San Bernardino Sheriff's Department says they found tracks leading away from the burning truck, and have sent over 100 officers to the area to search the mountain community and those searches will continue through the night says Cindy Bachman of the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department.  At 9:00 p.m. in the last briefing of the night, they stated that schools in the Big Bear district will open in the morning and the ski resort will also be in operation.  

Christopher Jordan Dorner, 33, was identified Wednesday night as a suspect in the slayings of 28-year-old Monica Quan and her fiance, 27-year-old Keith Lawrence, who were found shot to death at 9:10 p.m. Sunday in a parked car at 2100 Scholarship in Irvine. They were inside Lawrence's Kia, which was parked at the top of the five-story parking structure for the building where they lived.

 According to police, Quan was the daughter of a retired LAPD captain who represented Dorner at the Board of Rights hearing that led to his firing, and the killings were carried out in an act of revenge outlined in a lengthy manifesto Dorner posted online -- blaming Quan's father for losing his job.

During the search, Dorner's gray Nissan Titan pickup truck was spotted around 1:20 a.m. in the Corona area by a resident who alerted a pair of LAPD officers en route to protect somebody named in Dorner's manifesto.

The officers were trying to catch up to the vehicle near Interstate 15 and Magnolia Avenue when Dorner allegedly opened fire on them, grazing one officer in the head. The officers returned fire, but Dorner escaped.  Dorner was described as wearing camouflage fatigues and using a shoulder-held weapon.

A short time later, Dorner opened fire on two Riverside police officers who were stopped at a red light at Magnolia and Arlington avenues, according to Riverside police Lt. Guy Toussaint, adding that the two were on "routine patrol" and were not searching for Dorner at the time.

One of the officers -- a 34-year-old, 11-year veteran of the force -- was killed. The wounded Riverside officer, who is 27 years old, underwent surgery and is expected to fully recover, Riverside police Chief Sergio Diaz said.

 "Anne and I were shocked and saddened to learn of the senseless attack on a Riverside police officer that resulted in his death this morning," Gov. Jerry Brown said.  "We join his family, friends, co-workers and the Riverside community in mourning his death and in honoring his sacrifice."  Brown ordered Capitol flags to be flown at half-staff in honor of the officer.

Dorner -- a U.S. Navy reservist whose last known address was in the 4900 block of Sharon Drive in La Palma -- is black, 6 feet tall and weighs 270 pounds. 

Anyone encountering Dorner should consider him "armed and extremely dangerous" and should not approach or try contacting him but instead call 911 immediately, police said. A tip line has been established, (949) 724-7192. People can also call Riverside police at (951) 787-7911.