Published March 14, 2013
LOS ANGELES – The city has agreed to give $40,000 to two women whose pickup was shot up by a Police Department protection detail that mistook their newspaper delivery vehicle for the truck driven by rogue ex-cop Christopher Dorner during his rampage, officials announced Thursday.
The tax-free settlement covering the pickup and other property came quickly after the women's attorney, Glen Jonas, rejected Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck's offer of a replacement truck because the women would have had to pay taxes. The deal specified no admission of liability.
Margie Carranza and her 71-year-old mother, Emma Hernandez, were delivering papers around 5 a.m. Feb. 7 when LAPD officers guarding the suburban Torrance home of a Dorner target blasted at least 100 rounds into their Toyota pickup. Hernandez was shot in the back and Carranza had minor injuries.
Jonas said the women were still not doing well.
"Margie's still very emotionally impacted and Emma is suffering from her injuries," Jonas said.
Jonas, who noted he has waived all his fees, said he hoped that all other issues including personal injury can be resolved without the need to file a lawsuit or have a trial.
City Attorney Carmen Trutanich said the truck compensation was one of the fastest resolutions of a case he can remember in his term.
The women were expected to receive the money in two to four days.
The errant shooting in Torrance occurred just hours after Dorner shot and wounded a Los Angeles police officer in Riverside County and then ambushed two police officers in the city of Riverside, killing one and wounding the other.
Dorner was on the run in a Nissan Titan pickup after being named as the suspect in the murders of a retired LAPD captain's daughter and her fiance. The former captain had represented Dorner at an LAPD disciplinary hearing that led to his firing. The double-murder investigation led to discovery of a manifesto posted online by Dorner that vowed to wage war on Los Angeles police.
Dorner hid out in the San Bernardino Mountains until Feb. 12, when he tried to flee but law enforcement converged on him. Dorner killed one sheriff's deputy and wounded another in a gunbattle that ended with fire consuming the cabin he holed up in. Authorities believe he killed himself with a gunshot to the head.
The attack on the women's pickup truck wasn't the only mistaken police shooting that morning in Torrance. Moments later, nearby local police opened fire on a pickup truck driven by a surfer heading to the beach.