Los Angeles to pay $4.2 million to two women fired at in Dorner manhunt

LOS ANGELES Tue Apr 23, 2013 9:38pm EDT

A sign near the San Bernardino Mountains warns of road closures during a manhunt for former LAPD officer Christopher Dorner, wanted in connection to the murders of three people, near the town of Angelus Oaks, California February 12, 2013. REUTERS/Gene Blevins

A sign near the San Bernardino Mountains warns of road closures during a manhunt for former LAPD officer Christopher Dorner, wanted in connection to the murders of three people, near the town of Angelus Oaks, California February 12, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Gene Blevins

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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - The city of Los Angeles will pay $4.2 million to a mother and daughter who were caught in a hail of bullets in February when police mistook their truck for one driven by renegade ex-policeman Christopher Dorner and opened fire, officials said on Tuesday.

The settlement, which allows both sides to avoid a trial, brings the Los Angeles Police Department nearer to closing what had been an embarrassing chapter in its search for Dorner. The department still is reviewing the actions of two officers.

Dorner, a former Los Angeles police officer accused of killing four people in a vendetta against the LAPD, died on February 12 in a fiery standoff with officers in the mountains above Los Angeles.

The shooting-related injuries of the two women, who had been delivering newspapers in the Los Angeles suburb of Torrance, occurred in the first days of the manhunt for Dorner.

Emma Hernandez, 71, was shot twice in the back and her daughter, Margie Carranza, 47, suffered hand injuries from flying debris when two officers opened fire on them before dawn on February 7.

Police had been on the lookout for Dorner's gray Nissan Titan truck, and officials have said the officers opened fire after mistaking the blue Toyota Tacoma the women were driving for Dorner's truck.

"In reaching this settlement, we hope Margie and Emma will be able to move on with their lives, the city will be spared millions of dollars in litigation expense and time, and this unfortunate chapter of the Dorner saga will be put to rest," Los Angeles City Attorney Carmen Trutanich said in a statement.

Each woman will receive $2.1 million under the settlement, which must still be ratified by the Los Angeles City Council.

In March, Trutanich reached a separate settlement with the women that gave them $40,000 to replace their truck, which was left with multiple bullet holes.

"They are still grappling with a whole range of emotional issues related to the incident," said the two women's attorney, Glen Jonas.

Los Angeles police spokesman Chris No said the settlement does not affect the department's investigation into the shooting by the two officers.

"The department has not yet made any determination regarding the propriety of each officer's action or any potential discipline related to this use of force," he said.

The officers remain assigned to desk duty as part of the investigation, he said.

(Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis; Editing by Cynthia Johnston and Mohammad Zargham)

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Comments (6)
datsneefa wrote:
How much will be coming out of the officers pockets?

Apr 23, 2013 10:14pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
This scares me. I don’t understand why the officers would shoot so many bullets at a civilian vehicle without a positive ID. Possibly I am missing something here, but even if it was Dorner, shouldn’t he have been given the right to a trial? It seems like if he had been in that vehicle he most likely would have died there. I don’t understand why the officers are not facing criminal charges.

Apr 23, 2013 10:22pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
JohnM96 wrote:
Why would they open fire in the first place? I’m no expert on the law in America, but surely its not legal to open fire on a criminal if he isn’t trying to run off, or in this case drive off? I really don’t understand how American citizens can just let this crap happen. I’m pretty sure Dorner was correct about the cops he worked with being corrupt. I guess he just lost control when he realized that the people who are in charge of this country are firing him for trying to stick up for a man who is mentally ill. I don’t for one second condone what Dorner did, especially killing the officers daughter, but the officers could of killed TWO innocent people, most likely because they wanted him DEAD because he killed “one of theirs” so they decided to just open fire without much proof.

Apr 23, 2013 10:28pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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