Hunt for Dorner goes up in flames

by Amanda Guerrero

Officials surrounded a burning cabin near Big Bear at approximately 4:30 p.m. yesterday, where officials said former Los Angeles police officer Christopher Dorner had presumably barricaded himself.

Although firefighters from the San Bernardino County Fire Department arrived on the scene, they did not approach the structure, with suspicion that an armed Dorner was hiding within the flames. Officials said the fire was not a threat to neighboring cabins.

Los  Angeles Times reported Dorner’s body was “burned beyond recognition” and may require dental examinations to determine if in fact it is Dorner.

CBS News reported a single shot sounded from the cabin just before the flames appeared. It is unclear how the fire started.

Dorner, who is tied to the deaths of four people, exchanged gunfire with law enforcement authorities earlier in the day at approximately 1:30 p.m., while a roadblock on Highway 38 restricted commercial traffic from passing through.

NBC Los Angeles reported that two San Bernardino County deputies who were shot during the gunfire, were airlifted from the scene to Loma Linda University Medical Center, where one died. The other is being treated in surgery and is expected to recover.

The manhunt for Dorner, which began Feb. 6, led officers to the Big Bear area after Dorner’s burned truck was found nearby.

It is believed Dorner broke into a cabin in the area, where he tied up two female hostages and stole a white 2008 Dodge pickup truck. The women were released for debriefing after paramedics assessed and declared them uninjured.

When the vehicle was reported missing at approximately 12:20 p.m. yesterday, authorities expanded their search for Dorner on the ground as well as from the air. The man believed to be Dorner was first spotted by a U.S. Fish and Wildlife game warden about 20 minutes after the truck was reported missing.

“The vehicle was located at Hwy. 38 and Glass Rd. The suspect fled into the forest and barricaded himself inside a cabin,” according to a statement by the sheriff’s department. “A short time later there was an exchange of gunfire between law enforcement and the suspect.”

According to 10News, Dorner may have had as many as 34 legally registered weapons in his possession.

A public funeral for the veteran Riverside Police Department Officer Michael Crane, whom Dorner shot and killed on Feb. 7, will be held today.