Christopher Dorner is believed dead as the cop-shooting suspect never left the burning cabin where police had him surrounded, police say. Sources added that a single gunshot was heard inside just before the cabin burst into flames.
Officials said they were waiting for the fire in the cabin to go down before they began searching the ruins for the body of Dorner, The Associated Press reported.
“We have reason to believe that it is him,” San Bernardino County sheriff’s spokeswoman Cynthia Bachman said.
Police closed in on Dorner after a manhunt that stretched for days. Though the search stretched into Nevada and Mexico, police had concentrated on the snow-covered woods of Big Bear, a resort town 80 miles east of Los Angeles near where Dorner’s burnt-out truck was found last week.
Dorner was wanted for the murder of a Southern California couple, and police believe he is responsible for the shooting of two police offers last week, one of whom died. Another deputy reportedly died in the shootout on Tuesday when police converged on Dorner.
The ex-cop from the Los Angeles Police Department was reportedly furious at his firing, claiming racism and widespread abuse in the LAPD.
Before the rampage, Dorner published a 26-page manifesto on Facebook detailing alleged abuses of the LAPD and promising vengeance on those he believed had wronged him.
If Christopher Dorner is indeed dead, it will likely bring relief to the more than 40 people police had been protecting. The manhunt had stretched the resources of the LAPD, leaving the department struggling to respond to normal emergency calls, NBC Los Angeles reported.