The Dorner cabin owner watched on television as the cabin that stood for close to 90 years burned to the ground with the fugitive ex-cop stuck inside.
Candy Martin said she was watching television on Tuesday afternoon when news broke that police had cornered accused cop-killer Christopher Dorner. After the ex-LAPD cop had hijacked a car and kidnapped a couple, police pursued him into a cabin in San Bernadino National Forest.
Martin thought the cabin looked familiar.
“And we’re looking and we say, ‘Oh these are cabins, these look like,” and there’s no doubt that those are my cabins,’ ” the Dorner cabin owner told NBC 4 in Los Angeles.
Martin and her family bought the cabin in 2005 as a mountain retreat for the extended family, the Daily Mail reported. Since being built in 1928, the solid wood cabin was the set for several movies and television shows, Martin said.
Watching all of that go up in a blaze of fire and smoke was difficult, she said.
Before police surrounded Dorner in the cabin, the ex-cop engaged in a shootout, killing one officer. He then barricaded himself in the home, exchanging fire with officers. Though accounts of what happened next differ, police threw tear gas canisters into the home. Some believe — and police scanner reports seem to indicate — that the fire was intentionally set by police, but authorities deny that the blaze was intentional.
Martin, who had just spent time in the cabin over the weekend, said she wasn’t surprised Dorner was able to get inside as the cabins are very easy to get into.
Once the home caught on fire, Martin said she could watch no more.
“That was heart wrenching to see, the fire,” the Dorner cabin owner said. “I just started crying. I couldn’t talk at that point.”