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3:26 am
Mon February 11, 2013

Reward Offered For Ex-LAPD Officer's Arrest

Originally published on Mon February 11, 2013 9:41 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

We're also following a story in Southern California: the ongoing hunt for a former policeman suspected of a killing spree. Christopher Dorner is sought in the shooting of three people last week. The mayor of Los Angeles announced the city is offering a $1 million reward for any information leading to his arrest. As NPR's Kirk Siegler reports, one of the largest manhunts in California history is now going into its fifth day, with no major leads.

KIRK SIEGLER, BYLINE: Yesterday afternoon, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, along with police and FBI agents, faced reporters and a bank of TV cameras at LAPD headquarters.

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MAYOR ANTONIO VILLARAIGOSA: This search is not a matter of if. It's a matter of when. And I want Christopher Dorner to know that.

SIEGLER: Villaraigosa said the million-dollar reward is being funded by police departments, business and unions who want life in the city to return to normal.

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VILLARAIGOSA: We will not tolerate this reign of terror that has robbed us of the piece of mind that residents of Southern California deserve.

SIEGLER: That reign of terror, as the mayor put it, started more than a week ago when authorities believe Christopher Dorner began a string of shootings, apparent vengeance for his firing from the LAPD. As the news conference was going on, the manhunt for Dorner continued in earnest more than a hundred miles to the east in the San Bernardino Mountains. After more than three days of searching in the area where his burned-out pickup truck was found, there's still no sign of Dorner anywhere, and no leads. A frustrated and tired-looking Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck yesterday pledged the search will continue there and elsewhere, though. So will the 50 protection details at the homes of officers and their families Dorner is believed to have named in his online manifesto.

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CHIEF CHARLIE BECK: There's incredible anxiety, you know. To be targeted because of what you are, to be targeted because you took an oath to protect others, to have your family targeted because they're related to you - that is absolutely terrifying.

SIEGLER: Beck stressed numerous times that investigators are relying heavily on the public for tips, hence the reward. But he also knows there are some people who simply won't want to help the LAPD, regardless of the circumstances.

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BECK: Well, I hear the same things that you hear. You know, I hear the ghosts of the past of the Los Angeles Police Department. I hear that people think that maybe there is something to what he says, and I want to put that to rest.

SIEGLER: To that end, Chief Beck has announced his department will reopen its investigation into the incident that led to Christopher Dorner's firing for making false statements. Police say he made up reports of fellow officers using excessive violence and making racial slurs. In his apparent manifesto, Dorner says those conditions are rampant across the LAPD. He writes: People who live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones - a reference to the department's towering new glass headquarters downtown.

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SIEGLER: And in the streets outside headquarters, sirens echo. There are cops and roadblocks everywhere - very visible signs of the anxiety among police that Chief Beck described. Kirk Siegler, NPR News.

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INSKEEP: You're listening to MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.