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Wanted for Killing 3, Christopher Dorner’s Claims of Racism, Corruption Resonate with LAPD’s Critics

Expert says Dorner's manifesto contains "troubling allegations."
 
 
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AMY GOODMAN: The city of Los Angeles is offering a $1 million reward for information leading to the capture of Christopher Dorner, a former LAPD officer. Dorner is wanted in the three recent killings targeting fellow officers and their families. During a Sunday afternoon press conference, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa announced the bounty.

MAYOR ANTONIO VILLARAIGOSA: Collectively, this group, led by my office, is posting a reward of $1 million for information that will lead to Mr. Dorner’s capture. We will not tolerate anyone undermining the security, the tranquility of our neighborhoods and our communities. We will not tolerate this reign of terror that has robbed us of the peace of mind that residents of Southern California deserve.

AMY GOODMAN: Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa made the announcement after a massive manhunt failed to find the former police officer.

Christopher Dorner was fired from the police department in 2008 after he was accused of making false statements that his training officer had kicked a mentally ill suspect in the course of an arrest. Testimony by the suspect’s father supported Dorner’s claim.

In an online manifesto, Dorner claims he was unjustly fired. He also accused the department of racism, corruption and other abuses. In his message, he threatened to wage, quote, "unconventional and asymmetrical warfare to those in LAPDuniform." On Friday, Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck announced he’ll reopen an investigation into Dorner’s firing. LAPD Commander Andrew Smith said Chief Beck’s decision was about maintaining public trust in the police force.

COMMANDER ANDREW SMITH: He’s not opening it because of the accusations or because of the musings of someone who’s a—who’s a multiple murderer now. He’s doing it because he wants to ensure that the public knows that the Los Angeles Police Department is fair and transparent.

AMY GOODMAN: The manhunt for Dorner began last week after he allegedly shot dead Monica Quan, the daughter of the former police captain who represented Dorner during his disciplinary action, as well as her fiancé. Dorner is also accused of shooting several police officers, one of them fatally.

Police pursuing Dorner as part of a multi-agency hunt were involved in at least two separate shootings, injuring two people Thursday after they came across vehicles that looked similar to the suspect’s. Dorner’s own truck was found on fire and abandoned.

For more, we go to California, to Berkeley, where we’re joined by journalist Davey D. He runs the popular website "Davey D’s Hip Hop Corner" at  DaveyD.com. He’s co-host of  Hard Knock Radio on KPFA in Berkeley. He’s also an adjunct professor at San Francisco State in the Afro Studies Department.

Davey D, welcome to  Democracy Now! Start off by—what is most important, do you think, to understand about this case and Christopher Dorner at this point?

DAVEY D: I think what really has captured people’s imagination is, one, that he is—through his manifesto, is waging war against the L.A. Police Department. And I think for most people it might seem to be an open and shut case in terms of how people’s emotions would side. But what you found is, once you read the manifesto, it’s either opened up old wounds or it’s reaffirmed what people have long suspected or have experienced in terms of brutality. I think what stands out for me and many of the people that I deal with is the fact that there are these troubling allegations. And those things need to be further investigated, irregardless of what we feel about Dorner, whether or not he’s a psychopath or any of the words that they want to put on him. I’m really curious as to whether or not these allegations that he has raised, where he names dates, times and places and names, whether or not they actually check out. And I think that needs to be really investigated, above and beyond just the immediate scenario which led to his firing, which was the dispute between his sergeant, his supervising sergeant, Teresa Evans.

 
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