Couple held captive to get lion's share of Dorner reward
By Andrew Blankstein and Robert J. Lopez
9:04 PM EDT, May 7, 2013
A couple held captive by former L.A. police Officer Christopher Dorner, a tow truck driver and a ski resort employee will split what it is anticipated to be a $1-million reward in the case, authorities announced Tuesday afternoon.
Jim and Karen Reynolds, who called 911 after they escaped from being bound and gagged by Dorner, will get 80% of the reward, which will be paid in installments, the Los Angeles Police Department said in a 12-page report made public Tuesday afternoon.
Daniel M. McGowan, a Snow Summit ski resort employee, will receive 15% of the reward. He called authorities after spotting Dorner's burning truck in the Big Bear area, which led officers to focus their search in the snow-covered San Bernardino Mountains.
Tow truck driver R. Lee McDaniel will get the remaining 5%. He reported Dorner's truck and license plate to police in Corona, hours after authorities had launched a manhunt for the ex-LAPD officer.
The first reward installment to be divided will be $300,000, police officials said. The rest will be paid later, a decision determined by a panel of three retired judges who oversaw the process.
Among those not receiving any money is Richard Heltebrake, a camp ranger who was carjacked by Dorner in the Big Bear area and who had filed a claim seeking a piece of the reward pie. His phone call "did not lead to information leading to Dorner's capture," the report said, adding that officers had already spotted the fugitive in a white pickup.
Dorner is suspected of killing four people, including two law enforcement officers, and wounding several others. He died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound during a fiery gun battle with authorities.
Originally, at least 11 parties submitted claims for the $1-million reward that was announced during the manhunt for the ex-LAPD officer, who went on the lam after being identified as a suspect in the slaying of an Irvine couple.
In announcing updated guidelines for the reward last month, the LAPD said retired judges would make the determination of who gets the $1 million.
The reward -- a collection of smaller donations from numerous agencies, groups and individuals -- was initially offered for Dorner's "capture and conviction."
But that became irrelevant under the new criteria because Dorner was chased into a cabin near Big Bear, where he eventually shot himself.