The manhunt for fugitive ex-LAPD cop Christopher Dorner may have ended Tuesday afternoon in the mountains of Southern California, but the outcome is still unclear.
After a violent shootout that left one officer dead, the man believed to be Christopher Dorner remained barricaded inside a cabin near Big Bear, Calif. During the shootout, two officers were wounded and rushed to Loma Linda University Medical Center. One officer has since died, but the second officer is undergoing surgery and should recover from his wounds.
After the shootout near Big Bear, Dorner barricaded himself in the cabin. Police surrounded the cabin and began shooting tear gas into Dorner’s location. The cabin caught fire around 4:26 p.m. PST, CNN reported. Black smoke was seen billowing from the cabin, and footage from CBS Los Angeles showed flames engulfing the building. Over the course of 30 minutes it burned down. Fire trucks and other personnel were allowed to make their way to the cabin around 5 p.m. PST.
The cabin continues to smolder, and police have yet to move in or confirm Dorner’s identity, but the Associated Press believes that the manhunt is over. The AP noted that countless police officers surrounded Dorner’s cabin and waited as the cabin slowly burned down. It is believed that Dorner had been using the cabin for the last week during the manhunt, returning to the location after he broke into a home and stole a car from nearby Big Bear.
Before the cabin was on fire, gunfire was heard inside. It is unclear if the tear gas caused the fire, but according to Cindy Bachman, San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department spokeswoman, “There was active gunfire before the fire,” CNN reported.
In the KCAL broadcast, fire trucks were just beginning to arrive on the scene while police remained with rifles ready, but it looked like the flames were beginning to die down. It’s too early to confirm if Dorner is dead. Police will need to do an investigation of the cabin before any official determination can be made, but the AP believes the manhunt is over.