Irvine mayor asks council to contribute to Dorner reward

Irvine Mayor Steven S. Choi called on his city to contribute $100,000 to a multi-agency reward established during the manhunt for Christopher Dorner, who is presumed to have killed four people on a Southern California rampage that began in Irvine.

Labeling the agenda item a "call to action," Choi said during Tuesday's City Council meeting, "Our participation in funding the reward money, which I am making as a formal suggestion tonight for the first time, is a logical extension of what we do as a city — we watch out for each and every citizen."

The council voted unanimously in favor of the move.

Dorner's rampage began Feb. 3, not far from City Hall, on the top floor of an Irvine condominium complex's parking structure. Newly engaged couple Monica Quan, 28, and Keith Lawrence, 27, were his first victims. Quan's father, LAPD Capt. Randal Quan, represented Dorner in a hearing that resulted in his being fired.

Dorner also killed Riverside Police Officer Michael Crain, 34, and San Bernardino Sheriff's Deputy Jeremiah MacKay, 35, before eventually taking his own life after being surrounded in a Big Bear area cabin.

Although Irvine's involvement in the reward was not yet decided, Choi stood with Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Riverside Mayor Rusty Bailey, Irvine, Los Angeles and Riverside's police chiefs, and U.S. Marshal's Office and the FBI representatives at a Feb. 10 press conference where the reward was announced.

Choi now plans to use funds from the city's public safety budget.

"They don't need our $100,000, but this is more moral and ethical as the city where the crime began," he said.

Choi tapped Director of Public Safety David Maggard to represent the city and oversee the process of adding to the reward.

"The concept of the reward was simply to try and generate clues and find ways to start attaching resources to follow up on those types of clues in the hopes that someone might have an idea of who the suspect was who hadn't come forward yet," Maggard said about authorities' search before Dorner was named as a suspect. "And this might create a little bit of an extra push for them to do so, that was the general idea behind offering such an unprecedented reward in a very unusual circumstance."

The $1-million reward, which grew to $1.2 million during the search for Dorner, a 33-year-old U.S. Navy reservist, is possibly the biggest Southern California has had, according to the Los Angeles Times.

"I'm proud to say that we have the finest police force in Orange County, if not the entire country and I'm thankful that that's why we're the safest city in America," Mayor Pro Tem Jeffrey Lalloway said in commending Choi and Maggard's leadership.

Beth Krom and Larry Agran, the two liberal voices on the council, expressed discomfort at being left out of the loop at a time when Choi represented the entire city, especially its leaders.

According to Councilwoman Christina Shea, Choi didn't need to report back to anyone because he was carrying out duties for which he had been selected by Irvine's residents.

She thanked Maggard for positioning police officers at schools and protecting local children. Five students spread across two high schools, two middle schools and an elementary school in Irvine were related to people Dorner threatened in his manifesto.

"I don't think anyone won — no one ever does win when someone is that ill and vindictive," Shea said. "Everyone loses and it's a sad situation all around."



The meeting also included a special presentation by Mothers Against Drunk Driving, a nonprofit working to deter drunk driving and underage alcohol consumption. Representative Crystal Gray handed out Deuce Awards to 12 local police officers who made between 25 and 99 DUI arrests last year. Denny Bak led the pack with 70 arrests in 2012.

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