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MANHUNT: SoCal Police Officers Ambushed, 1 Dead; Gunman Sought

Police say that a man linked to the death of an Irvine couple-- a disgraced LAPD officer-- shot three police officers in Riverside and Corona this morning, killing one. A 'blue alert' has been issued in Riverside, LA, San Bernardino and San Di


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A Riverside police officer was shot to death today and one was wounded by a gunman believed to Christopher Jordan Dorner, the fired Los Angeles Police Department Officer wanted for the revenge slayings of a college basketball coach from Walnut and her fiance in Irvine, police said.

The gunman, who fled after shooting, ambushed the two Riverside officers while they were stopped at a red light, said Riverside police Lt. Guy Toussaint, adding that the two were on patrol and not searching for Dorner.

The wounded Riverside officer was undergoing surgery this morning, Toussaint said.

Before the Riverside shooting, a shootout in Corona also believed to have involved Dorner left a Los Angeles police officer with a graze wound but his partner was not hurt, police said. The officer is assigned to the Los Angeles Police Department's Newton Station, said Newton Station Sgt. Ike Ornelas.

Now, the CHP has issued what they call a "blue alert," a system similar to Amber Alerts in which law enforcement asks the media to send out information to the public because the "violent" suspect is "an imminent threat to the public or other law enforcement personnel."

The LAPD sent out the following information in their alert at 6:25 a.m.: 

  • THE SUSPECT IS CONSIDERED ARMED AND EXTREMELY DANGEROUS*
  • A BLUE ALERT HAS BEEN ACTIVATED IN THE FOLLOWING COUNTIES: KERN, SANTA BARBARA, VENTURA, LOS ANGELES, SAN BERNARDINO, ORANGE, RIVERSIDE, SAN DIEGO, AND IMPERIAL.
  • ON THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 7, 2013, AT APPROXIMATELY 0122 HOURS, THE SUSPECT WAS INVOLVED IN MULTIPLE SHOOTINGS WITH MULTIPLE AGENCIES IN THE RIVERSIDE CHP AREA.
  • THE SUSPECT IS CHRISTOPHER JORDAN DORNER, A 33 YEAR OLD, BLACK, MALE, 6 FEET TALL, 270 POUNDS, WITH BLACK HAIR, BROWN EYES, WITH AN UNKNOWN CLOTHING DESCRIPTION.
  • THE SUSPECT WAS LAST SEEN DRIVING A 2005 BLUE OR GRAY NISSAN TITAN, WITH A CA LICENSE PLATE OF 8D83987 or 7X09131 - THE SUSPECT MAY BE SWTICHING BETWEEN THE TWO LICENSE PLATES.
  • THE VEHICLE ALSO HAS SKI RACKS ON ITS ROOF.
  • IF SEEN CONTACT 9-1-1

Dorner, a U.S. Navy reservist whose last known address was in the 4900 block of Sharon Drive in La Palma, was represented in the hearing that resulted in his firing by Randy Quan, the father of Monica Quan, slain with Keith Lawrence, Irvine Police Department Chief David Maggard said at a news conference Wednesday night.

Dorner, 33, posted a multi-page manifesto online Monday, saying he didn't mind dying because he already died when he was fired from the LAPD, Maggard said.

He wrote that it had been his life's ambition to be an LAPD officer since he served in the Explorer program, and he blamed Randy Quan, a retired Los Angeles Police Department officer, for his firing.

"I never had the opportunity to have a family of my own ... (so) I am terminating yours," Dorner wrote to Randy Quan.

The LAPD's elite Metropolitan squad was sent to protect people mentioned in Dorner's manifesto.

The LAPD issued a statement Wednesday saying it was taking the threats "very seriously," implementing "all measures possible to ensure the safety of our LAPD personnel, their families and the Los Angeles community, and will continue to do so until Dorner is apprehended and all threats have been abated."

Dorner worked as a police officer from Feb. 7, 2005 until Sept. 4, 2008, "when his employment was terminated," police said. He was fired for allegedly making false statements about his training officer.

Dorner is black, 6 feet tall and weighs 270 pounds. He has been driving a blue 2005 Nissan Titan pickup, Maggard said.

Anyone encountering Dorner should consider him "armed and extremely dangerous" and should not approach or try contacting him but instead call 911 immediately, police said.

A tip line has been established, (949) 724-7192.

Police who received a call at 9:10 p.m. Sunday about a person slumped over in a parked car at 2100 Scholarship found the recently engaged Quan and Lawrence dead in Lawrence's Kia, which was parked at the top of the five-story structure for the building where they lived.

There was no evidence Lawrence and 28-year-old Monica Quan were being robbed, said Irvine police Lt. Julia Engen, who noted that the high-density residential community is highly secure with key card access only.

Irvine had two slayings in both 2011 and 2012, according to Engen, who said overall violent crime is at "historic lows" in the city.

Monica Quan was in her second season as an assistant coach for the Cal State Fullerton women's basketball team after holding a similar position at California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks.

The couple met while at Concordia University in Irvine, where they both played basketball. Lawrence was seeking a career in law enforcement, which made him a good match for Monica Quan because her father was an LAPD officer, friends said.

The 27-year-old Lawrence, who graduated from the Ventura County Sheriff's Academy, was working as a patrol officer at USC's Department of Public Safety. He joined the department in August, said Carl Marziali, USC's assistant vice president of media relations.

Monica Quan was a star athlete at Walnut High School, then played at Cal State Long Beach from 2003-05 before transferring to Concordia University, where she graduated in 2007 with a degree in exercise and sports science. She received a master's degree from Concordia in 2009.

Autopsies on the bodies of Lawrence and Monica Quan were completed Tuesday and Wednesday, respectively, said Jim Amormino of the Orange County Sheriff's Department.

"The coroner determined that both died of multiple gunshot wounds," Amormino said. "No further information will be released at this time."

--City News Service contributed to this report.

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