A Manhunt, Tragedy and $1.4 Million: Who Should Get The Dorner Reward Money? Ramou Sarr

Unless you have been in sequester and prohibited from the use of any and all electronics and social media, the name Christopher Dorner should ring a bell. If, for whatever reason, you aren’t familiar – let me fill you in. Dorner, a former member of the LAPD, who was dismissed in 2008 on a charge of making false statements, led police on a ten-day manhunt after being identified as the suspect in the murder of a couple in Irvine, CA, one being the daughter of the man who represented Dorner in the disciplinary hearings that resulted in his dismissal.

Dorner is accused of killing four people in a spree that began on February 3rd and ended on the 12th, after the remains of a body, that has since been determined to be Dorner’s, with a single gunshot wound to the head was found in the burned cabin in the San Bernardino Mountains, where Dorner is believed to have engaged in a shootout with officers.

A number of sources, including the Los Angeles City Council, The County Board of Supervisors, and Riverside City Council contributed funds toward a reward in return for information leading to Dorner’s capture. At the time of his death, the reward money was at an extraordinary $1.4 million.

The question now is: Who gets that money?

On the 14th, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and LAPD Chief Charlie Beck issues a statement regarding the reward money:

More than 20 jurisdictions and entities are involved in this reward, so all of them will be coming together to collectively determine whether any individual or individuals qualify for it. Our personal hope is that the reward will be distributed, but we must follow the rules and respect the procedures of each entity.

Just the following day it was revealed that a “legal loophole” could prevent any of those 20 jurisdictions and entities from claiming the reward because Dorner died, and was not captured.

In an email to ABC News, Frank T. Mateljan, spokesman for the Los Angeles city attorney said, “Arguably, city law is broad enough to allow payment to persons who assisted in the ‘identification, apprehension OR arrest and conviction” of a suspect. As it stands, the reward is still on the table, though no one has yet stepped forward to claim any of it – the LAPD does, however, report a number of inquires about the reward. If it is determined that the city will honor the reward, one must follow the procedural steps to do so, applying first in writing and being subject to a review by both the LAPD robbery and homicide division and the city council.

Among those who are thought to be eligible for the reward – either personally or via the court of public opinion – are Rick Heltebrake, who Dorner allegedly carjacked on the 12th, Karen and Jim Reynolds, the couple who Dorner held in their Big Bear-condo before encountering Heltebrake, and the murder victims’ families.

What do you think? Who should get the reward, if anyone? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

Featured image via The Telegraph 

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  1. And let me say, I am feel a deep sorrow for those who were the victims of the accused murders and I also feel sorrow for their survivors. I only wish we really knew who committed the crimes so justice could knowingly be served and the possibility to peace of mind can be awarded.

    • Believe me when I say that I cannot even believe that I am defending the LAPD right now, but I think that in these situations when someone like Dorner – putting aside the actual murder victims – writes the manifesto that he did and threatens murder to a number of known targets and then holes himself up inside a cabin – his death by police seemed to be one that all of us, including Dorner, knew was going to happen. There is a lot to say about Dorner and his manifesto, most of which I didn’t think was “crazy,” but I also don’t think that the view that he gave up his rights when he ran is too crazy either. This outcome is not surprising, is what I’m saying really. Do I think we also need to have an actual discussion and not dismiss Dorner’s allegations against the LAPD? Absolutely. Also, there’s a difference between “innocent” and “not guilty,” but that might be kind of besides the point here.

      • Wait, I’m amending this. I don’t think he “gave up his rights” – not to a fair trial anyway – by running. But, to me, Dorner made it pretty clear that having the opportunity to present his case in front of a jury was not his intention or what he wanted at all at this point . He wanted to make a statement, he wanted us to care about what he wrote and not dismiss it as the ramblings of a crazy person.

  2. I cannot believe there is a reward for the premeditated murder of this man who was robbed of his rights to defend himself in court and was, instead, killed in cold blood for accusations of murder. Thank God we’re still allowed our freedom of speech if not our right to plead innocent until proven guilty.