Cause of cabin fire fuels debate on Christopher Dorner standoff

Feb 13, 2013 - by - 0 Comments

Feb. 13, 2013 Yahoo

"Ok, we're gonna go forward with the plan, with the burn ... like we talked about."

"Seven burners deployed and we have a fire."

"Copy. Seven burners deployed and we have a fire."

These purported police commands come from 5 minutes and 17 seconds of audio allegedly recorded off law enforcement radios during Tuesday’s tense standoff between SWAT officers and suspected serial killer Christopher Dorner.

The audio, posted to YouTube, has fueled speculation that authorities may have purposely started the fire to either kill Dorner or force him to surrender.

On Wednesday, law enforcement sources confirmed to the Los Angeles Times that officers did throw incendiary tear gas canisters into the mountain cabin before it caught fire. According to the Times:

SWAT officers surrounding the cabin were under a "constant barrage of gunfire," one source said. “He put himself in that position. There weren’t a lot of options.” Hoping to end the standoff, law enforcement authorities first lobbed "traditional" tear gas into the cabin. When that did not work, they opted to use CS gas canisters, which are known in law enforcement parlance as incendiary tear gas. These canisters have significantly more chance of starting a fire. This gas can cause humans to have burning eyes and start to feel as if they are being starved for oxygen. It is often used to drive barricaded individuals out.

Dorner, a disgruntled ex-LAPD officer accused of killing four people in the past week, never emerged from the charred cabin near Big Bear Lake, Calif.

The coroner’s office is studying the remains of a burned body found in the basement, but an anonymous official told The Associated Press that a wallet and personal items, including a California driver's license issued to Christopher Dorner, were recovered.

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