Although tips from several citizens were instrumental in helping police corner fugitive ex-LAPD cop Christopher Dorner on Tuesday, there could be a loophole preventing the tipsters from collecting a promised $1.2 million reward.
The reward pledged by Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, which went up from $1 million to $1.2 million when the L.A. City Council and County Board of Supervisors contributed money, was for information leading to Dorner's "capture and conviction." The problem now, though, is that Dorner was neither captured nor convicted, technically speaking.
"Dorner was cornered but not captured," one source at the board of supervisors told TMZ
After running gun battles on Tuesday, a body believed to be that of Dorner was found in a charred cabin in Big Bear, Calif., along with a wallet containing Dorner's driver's license.
Vicki Curry, senior press secretary for Villaraigosa, told the New York Daily News that the reward process involves sorting out the rules and stipulations set by the people who contributed the money.
"The reward distribution is a very complicated process," she said.
LAPD Officer Alex Martinez said the mayor's office will determine if the reward money is paid out.
"I don't think there's going to be a reward," Martinez told The Associated Press. "Remember, it's capture and conviction. There was no capture and no conviction. It's kind of a no-brainer."
The body found in the charred cabin has not been positively identified, but authorities said they assumed it was Dorner, the 33-year-old former policeman who is suspected of a revenge-fueled killing spree targeted at police officers and their families.
Dorner retreated into the mountainside cabin after a fierce gunfight with police in which a sheriff's deputy was killed. During another shootout, the house caught fire and police reportedly heard a single gunshot as the flames spread.
San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon stressed that while he couldn't "absolutely, positively confirm" that the body found in the rubble was Dorner's, the manhunt had been called off, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Dorner's reign of terror apparently stemmed from his 2009 dismissal from the police force for making false statements against a fellow officer who he said had committed police brutality. In an online manifesto complete with a hit list, Dorner promised to wage "unconventional and asymmetrical warfare" on the LAPD.
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