How much do you really know about Christopher Dorner?

Other | Thursday 14th February 2013 | Harry


Christopher Dorner, the 'crazed killer ex-cop' has been caught and killed. But how much do you really know about the circumstances surrounding this unfortunate set of events? How much of what we have been told is true? 


Christopher Dorner has made the news in a big way recently for some very worrying reasons. By now everyone will be aware that he has died in a blaze in a remote cabin, having barricaded himself in and being involved in a standoff with the police. I should say allegedly, because the charred body found in the cabin cannot be identified and so we must wait for forensic tests to confirm the identity. His driving license was found in the rubble though so I think we can pretty safely assume that he is in fact dead.

 We have been told that he was an out of control, killer ex-cop. A man gone mad who has vented his rage through a killing rampage; just another in a long list of Americans who have taken their guns to others in a futile attempt to restore balance to their lives. The media have branded him a lunatic and yet little has been made of the circumstances leading up to this saddening turn of events. I wonder how many people have even read Dorner’s ‘manifesto’ and looked a little deeper than the surface. Does anybody even care or is everybody all too willing to sweep him under the rug?

If we take a look at the events which led to Christopher Dorner’s dismissal from the LAPD (I should say according to the man himself) then far more questions are raised than answers given. He was sacked in 2008 for falsely claiming a colleague, Teresa Evans, kicked a homeless suspect. His case was thrown out and he was found to have made up the whole incident, even though there is in fact a disturbing trail that suggests he may in fact not have been lying. Having been accused of making the story up, the case went to a Board of Rights trial, which is an internal investigation in a court like atmosphere but made up of only three people. Despite Christopher Gettler, the suspect who had allegedly been kicked stating that he was kicked by Evans, and also Gettler’s father stating that his son had told him on the night in question that he had been kicked by an officer, Dorner was found guilty and terminated from the LAPD.

However a member of this BOR panel was a Captain Phil Tingirides who had a conflict of interest. He was a personal friend of Evans and had been her supervisor at Harbor Station. Dorner’s request for his removal was denied. Maybe because the advocate for the LAPD BOR was a Sgt. Anderson who was also a friend of Evans’ and former partner from working patrols together. His request for her removal was also denied.

During the BOR Dorner was labelled as a bully, unsuccessfully. It in fact turned out that he had been the only one not doing the bullying but standing up for the Jewish victim. All this because he had filed a complaint against two fellow officers accusing them of racism. On a patrol, whilst in a van with 8 other officers he had heard two of them speaking in racist language, referring to some black males as n******. Having confirmed the language, a scuffle ensued but in the resulting investigation, of the 8 officers, only 1 other gave a statement consistent with Durner’s. The other 6 claimed not to have heard anything.

Add to this the fact that during the trial another officer, Sgt. Hernandez, told the BOR panel that he had arrived at the scene of the alleged kicking and assisted in the cuffing of the suspect, Dorner’s version of events was being discredited from every angle. Dorner outright claimed this to be a lie and that he had in fact arrived after the cuffing and only assisted in lifting the suspect from the ground.

There is yet another disturbing part to this story though. The background of Teresa Evans, the officer Dorner accused of kicking the suspect. She had been flagged several times by risk management and her use of force record was long by even her own admittance. Her nickname was Chupacabra as she found it entertaining to draw blood from detainees. Dorner claims that at one point she even intentionally ripped the flesh from an arm of a 70 year old woman with elastic skin who was involved in a dispute. She was even demoted from a senior lead officer rank for performance issues.

What is also strange and raises a question is that after the whole event, Dorner wasn’t charged with filing a false report, an offense that all other officers usually would have had criminal charges filed against for. Why then if he was dismissed for filing a false report was he not charged in the same manner as all others, unless the LAPD were trying to deal with it as swiftly and as under the radar as possible?

This man of course is no saint though. The manifesto descends into very severe threats but from the character that he seemed to have, there must be a serious catalyst for him to go so far over the edge. In his manifesto it comes across that he is a man trying to clear his name. Maybe the threats were in the hope that the LAPD would give him his life back. Maybe this whole episode came about because a man was pushed over the edge by the corrupt American system, or a group inside of it who conspired against him.

But then it all ended a few days ago, in a fiery blaze in a secluded cabin in the woods, surrounded by police.

I am not condoning Christopher Dorner’s actions. Whatever the injustice he may have suffered the answer was never for him to start killing. But I urge you to think about this whole incident as more than just a man gone mad. From the police scanner there is enough evidence to suggest that the fire was started intentionally as they discuss throwing in the ‘burner.’ Still the police claim that it was started by accident but they have also confirmed that yes, pyrotechnic teargas canisters were used. It's hard to imagine what other outcome they thought the use of pyrotechnic canisters would bring having thrown them into a wood cabin, despite John McMahon, spokesperson for San Bernardino sheriff's department protesting, 'It was not on purpose. We didn't intentionally burn down that cabin to get Mr. Dorner out.'

Let’s be honest, do we really believe that it wasn’t? This had gone way too far for Christopher Dorner to make it out alive, especially if there was credence to all his claims. Far easier to forever silence him and move on. When has the American government ever shown any restraint when it comes to dealing with what they consider a problem? Unfortunately I fear that this whole situation was brought on by, and finished by, a corrupt system that America claims is the very one protecting them. 

If you are interested, here is a link where you can view Dorner's manifesto in its entirety

Harry Illingworth