LOS ANGELES, Calif. — The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors today approved paying $100,000 in reward money to tipsters who helped police and sheriff’s deputies track down former Los Angeles police Officer Christopher Dorner, who killed the daughter of a retired LAPD captain and her fiance and a Riverside police officer.
Karen and Jim Reynolds, who Dorner tied up in their Big Bear cabin, will get $80,000 and Daniel McGowan, who reported Dorner’s burning pickup truck on the side of a ski hill, will be paid $20,000, based on the board’s unanimous vote.
Dorner began his killing spree in Irvine Feb. 3, murdering the daughter of a retired LAPD captain and her fiance. As law enforcement across at least five counties sought Dorner, he shot two Riverside police officers in an ambush at a red light, killing one and paralyzing the other from the neck down.
The manhunt ended Feb. 12 in a shootout and Angelus Oaks area south of Big Bear, where Dorner holed up in an unoccupied cabin. A fourth victim, a San Bernardino sheriff’s deputy, was killed in the shootout, and Dorner died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head as the cabin went up in flames around him.
During the manhunt, several municipalities offered rewards totaling $1 million for information leading to the rogue cop. Some, including Riverside, have since withdrawn their offers, prompting lawsuits.
Four claims were made against the $100,000 offered by Los Angeles County. Based on input from the Sheriff’s Department, county lawyers and a three-judge panel responsible for determining the allocation of rewards from various public entities, the board chose to pay two of four claimants.
McGowan provided the first solid evidence that Dorner was in the Big Bear area. He had abandoned his truck and set it afire.
Dorner held the Reynolds at gunpoint, tied them up and stole their vehicle. They called police as soon as they broke free, and their description of the vehicle led to Dorner.
Others who staked a claim to the reward money, including Richard Heltebrake who was carjacked by Dorner, were determined to be ineligible for reward money, because police were in pursuit of Dorner by the time the new information was called in.