Authorities on high alert as manhunt for triple-murder suspect Christopher Dorner continues
Search in Big Bear area affected by weather
Last Updated: 102 days ago
SAN DIEGO - Authorities across Southern California remained on high alert for the second consecutive day Friday as they continue the search for Christopher Dorner, a fired Los Angeles Police Department officer suspected in the revenge slayings of a college basketball coach and her fiancé in Irvine and the ambush killing of a Riverside police officer.
San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon told reporters Friday morning that the hunt will continue in Big Bear until Dorner is found. He also said there was no evidence that he left the mountain.
Searchers dealt with falling snow and freezing temperatures in the Big Bear Lake region of the San Bernardino Mountains. McMahon said at a noon press briefing that the search would continue unless there is evidence Dorner is no longer in the area.
According to a report in the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, Dorner's mother, Nancy, has owned a two-acre parcel of vacant land in Arrowbear -- 35 miles from Big Bear -- since 1981.
Authorities said there was not a bunker on the property, which was considered undeveloped.
During an afternoon press briefing, authorities said teams searched 400 homes in Big Bear Thursday and planned to search 200 cabins by nightfall Friday.
Ground crews did not search the mountain Friday due to snow, and authorities said crews searched all day without air support because of the weather conditions.
Authorities said at least 12 teams of two will patrol the streets overnight, and crews will resume a full search Saturday.
Authorities confirmed that ski tracks found were unrelated to Dorner, and a kicked-in door at a cabin was also determined to be unrelated.
Meanwhile, U.S. Marshals searched a La Palma home -- the last known address for Dorner. The Associated Press reported Dorner's mother and sister were at the home at the time and were cooperating with authorities.
In San Diego, 10News learned that a Friday morning report of Dorner in Lakeside, which prompted a full response from the San Diego Sheriff's Department, may have been a hoax.
Deputies received a call from a person who reported seeing a suspicious man with a gun at a residence on Ketull Uunyaa Way shortly before midnight.
The caller also told authorities someone had been tied up and specifically referenced Dorner. Authorities blocked off and searched the area around Ketuull Uunyaa Way and Wild Canyon Road.
10News learned that the call may have been a form of "swatting," where a caller tricks emergency and law enforcement agencies into responding to a scene.
Additionally, San Diego authorities said a reported sighting at Horton Plaza at about 10 a.m. was unfounded.
Both the Oceanside and Carlsbad police departments told 10News they started pairing up during their patrols.
Oceanside police said everyone has been even more alert than usual. They were working with other agencies to raise awareness, and took flyers to their local fire station so firefighters knew what to watch for.
On Thursday, Caltrans had freeway signs up that alerted drivers of the search. On Friday, those signs were blacked out, and Caltrans said it was because Dorner no longer has his truck.
KEY EVENTS: Search for Christopher Dorner
IMAGES: Incidents linked to Christopher Dorner
On Thursday, the massive manhunt for Dorner focused in San Diego for much of the day after his LAPD badge and identification were found near Lindbergh Field and a possible sighting of the suspect was reported at Navy Gateway Inn and Suites.
The hotel sits next to the Naval Base Point Loma Naval Mine and Anti-Submarine Warfare complex, which was placed on lockdown for several hours amid the manhunt. By mid-afternoon, the search moved onto San Bernardino County after Dorner's pickup was found burning just off a forest road in Big Bear.
Police continued to comb the mountainous Big Bear area today and were also maintaining security details aimed at protecting colleagues named as targets in a manifesto written and posted online by the suspect, authorities said.
Read More: Full copy of Dorner's manifesto
All the areas where someone could have walked away from the truck were being searched by ground and the hunt was continuing throughout into early Friday, said Cindy Bachman of the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department.
A winter storm was expected to bring up to four inches of snow to the Big Bear area Friday, according to the National Weather Service, but it was unclear if Dorner has ventured into the rugged terrain or if the truck was set ablaze as a feint. Bachman said she was not aware of any vehicle having been stolen since the burned out truck was discovered.
Deputies have gone to about half of the 400 vacation homes in the area and there were no signs of forced entry at any of them, Bachman said late Thursday. The pickup truck discovery led to the lockdown of Big Bear-area schools and the closure of the Bear Mountain ski resort. 10News learned that the schools will remain closed Friday.
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 him 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.
The LAPD has been on a full tactical alert, which extends officers' shifts, since shortly after the Thursday morning shootings in Riverside County of three police officers, one of whom was killed, said Officer Christopher No of the LAPD's Media Relations Section.
Numerous officers have been standing guard outside LAPD headquarters in downtown Los Angeles since Dorner, 33, was identified Wednesday night as the suspect in the slayings of 28-year-old Monica Quan and her finance, 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.
The couple was inside Lawrence's Kia, which was parked at the top of the five-story parking structure of 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 the lengthy manifesto, which blames Quan's father for losing his job.
Dorner was hired by the LAPD on Feb. 7, 2005, and he was fired Sept. 4, 2008, for allegedly making false statements about his training officer, police said.
After Dorner was named as the suspect in the Irvine killings, his gray Nissan Titan pickup truck was spotted around 1:20 a.m. Thursday in the Corona area by a resident who alerted a pair of LAPD officers en route to protect someone named in the 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, wearing camouflage fatigues and using a shoulder-held weapon, escaped, police said.
A short time later, Dorner allegedly opened fire on two Riverside police officers who were stopped at a red light at Magnolia and Arlington avenues in Riverside, according to Riverside police Lt. Guy Toussaint, who said the two were on "routine patrol" and were not searching for Dorner at the time.
One officer -- 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.
Early Thursday morning in Torrance, meanwhile, LAPD and Torrance police officers opened fire in separate shootings about a block apart at two trucks matching the description of Dorner's Nissan. In the LAPD shooting, two women delivering newspapers were wounded.
Los Angeles police Chief Charlie Beck said they were the victims of mistaken identity. One of them, a 71-year-old woman, was in intensive care with two bullet wounds to her back, the woman's attorney told reporters.
Beck noted that Dorner unsuccessfully tried to steal a boat from a man in San Diego County on Wednesday.
Also in San Diego, police surrounded a military base and hotel in Point Loma after receiving a report of a suspect matching Dorner, but nobody was found.
In the LAPD hearing that resulted in his termination, Dorner was represented by then-LAPD Capt. Randy Quan, the father of Monica Quan, according to Irvine Police Department Chief David Maggard.
Dorner posted his manifesto online Monday, saying he didn't mind dying because he already died when he was fired from the LAPD, Maggard said. He wrote that it had been his life's ambition to be an LAPD officer since he served in the police Explorer program, and he blamed Quan for his firing.
"I never had the opportunity to have a family of my own ... (so) I am terminating yours," Dorner wrote to Randy Quan.
Dorner's manifesto essentially described his plans to begin a military-style assault against the LAPD.
"I would tell him to turn himself in," Beck said. "This has gone far enough. You know, nobody else needs to die."
Officials shut down Dorner's old elementary school
Officials at Norwalk Christian School in Los Angeles shut down the school for the day due to fears that Dorner may target the elementary school.
Dorner mentioned Norwalk Christian School in his manifesto saying it was the first place he experienced racism.
Dorner wrote that he was bullied by another student in the first grade and that the principal swatted him when he reported the incident. On Thursday, police told Norwalk school officials they should close down immediately and parents rushed to pick up their children.
10News learned that officials plan to close the school for the rest of the week.
Copyright 2013 Scripps Media, Inc. City News Service contributed to this report. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.