LAPD Sgt. Terie Evans' life has, for nearly a decade, been interlinked with that of a man who became a notorious killer.
Evans had been accused by her then-partner on the force, Christopher Dorner, of kicking a mentally ill man. When that claim was found to be untrue, the department stripped Dorner of his badge.
His subsequent rage led to a homicidal rampage across Southern California in 2013 that Evans helped to end by identifying him to authorities.
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In the standoff that followed an extensive manhunt, Dorner shot himself and died.
Now, two years after the rampage, Evans, who is white, has sued the LAPD, alleging that her supervisors retaliated and discriminated against her because of the "racial connotations" in the accusations by Dorner, who was black.
LAPD officials and Evans' attorneys declined to comment on the lawsuit, which was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court on Friday.
In his weeklong shooting spree across Southern California, Dorner killed two police officers and the daughter of an LAPD captain and her boyfriend.
In a manifesto written on his Facebook page, Dorner said that he was discriminated against because of his race and unfairly fired from the department, and that he sought retribution against those who wronged him.
Dorner was fired in 2009 after a department disciplinary board concluded that he had made false statements against Evans, who was his training officer.
According to the lawsuit, Dorner's complaint sparked "racial tension" and led to Evans being harassed by her supervisors, blocked from promotion and denied overtime pay.
The lawsuit alleges that Evans was targeted by the department and faced further retaliation for reporting racial discrimination against her by supervisors.
Evans, the lawsuit says, was made "a scapegoat because of the racial connotations attached to Dorner's claims and was punished by the LAPD, and treated unfairly by members of the department on account of her race."
The lawsuit alleges that the department was aware of past problems tied to Dorner, including that he had failed a psychological screening test, shot himself in the hand and assaulted a classmate while attending the LAPD academy.
After Dorner's death, Evans was lauded for her role in identifying the ex-cop as a suspect in the killing of Monica Quan and her boyfriend Keith Lawrence, who were found riddled with bullets in their car in Irvine.
Evans was previously contacted by a police officer in the San Diego area who had found police equipment — including a police uniform, ammunition and other items — bearing both Dorner's and Evans' names. After learning that one of the victims in the Irvine killing was the daughter of former LAPD Lt. Randy Quan, who had represented Dorner at his termination proceedings, she alerted Irvine police to her hunch that Dorner may be involved.
"In my mind, it felt like such a long shot," Evans told The Times at the time. "But my gut feeling made it a lot stronger than that. I just knew. Something told me that there was some kind of a connection."
The decision to alert officials led investigators to Dorner's online manifesto. Evans and 50 other LAPD officers and their families went into hiding or sought protection as the manhunt for Dorner continued.
LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said he believes Evans' actions saved lives.
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