So who really deserves the Christopher Dorner reward money? The park ranger who was carjacked by fugitive ex-cop Christopher Dorner in California has filed a claim for the $1.2 million reward offered for Dorner’s capture, but he may have some competition.
The ranger, Rick Heltebrake, said in his claim that he was driving on Glass Road in Big Bear national park when a man jumped out of a snow bank and pointed a gun at him.
“Mr Heltebrake immediately recognized this man as Christopher Dorner,” wrote his attorney Allen L. Thomas in the Feb. 19 reward claim. Heltebrake said Dorner walked up to his truck, pointed a rifle at him and said, “I don’t want to hurt you, just take your dog and start walking.” Heltebrake called authorities after the incident and police surrounded the cabin where Dorner was hiding. He never escaped and eventually took his own life before the cabin burned down.
“Mr. Villiagrosa made a promise of that much money for the capture and conviction of Mr. Dorner and I believe that my phone call directly led to the end of the biggest manhunt in southern California history,” Heltebrake told KTLA-5 news in LA.
“Mr Heltebrake’s telephone call to Deputy Franklin notified law enforcement of Mr Dorner’s location, provided a description of the vehicle he was fleeing in and was the substantial factor in the capture of Mr Dorner at the cabin location,” Heltebrake’s attorney wrote in the February 19 claim for the money. ”Consequently, Mr. Heltebrake accepts the mayor’s offer of the entire reward of $1.2m.”
“The case is closed,” Heltebrake said. “They aren’t looking for anybody else.”
Heltebrake is unlikely to be the sole claimant for the cash. Police received dozens of tips during the manhunt that crossed 20 jurisdictions and a couple who had been tied up by Dorner after they found him in their rental cabin called 911 after managing to free themselves. Heltebrake’s phone call came after that.