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Police: Shootings Case of Mistaken Identity

Two officer-involved shootings in Torrance may be related to the investigation of Christopher Jordan Dorner, who is suspected of killing three people.

Redondo Beach and other South Bay residents were awakened early Thursday morning by police sirens and a helicopter overhead responding to two shootings just inside the Torrance city limits.

Preliminary details suggest the incidents are related to the search for Christopher Jordan Dorner, 33, suspected in the killings Sunday of Irvine residents Monica Quan and Keith Lawrence and the death Thursday of a Riverside police officer.

Torrance Police Lt. Devin Chase told the Los Angeles Times that neither incident involved Dorner, but were related to the investigation of him. Dorner is also suspected of shooting a Los Angeles police officer in a 1:30 a.m. Thursday shootout in Corona and killing the Riverside police officer on routine patrol in that city a short time later.

The first of the two Torrance shootings happened in the 19500 block of Redbeam Avenue at around 5:20 a.m., Chase said. Los Angeles police detectives wounded two people who were in a vehicle that reportedly matched the description of the one being used by Dorner.

"The LAPD officers assigned observed a vehicle matching the suspect's vehicle driving down the street with the lights turned out," LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said.

According to City News Service, Beck said officers wound up opening fire on the vehicle. Both people inside the vehicle were hospitalized. One victim was treated for a minor gunshot wound, while the second was being treated for two gunshot wounds, Beck said.

No officers were injured.

"Tragically, we believe this was a case of mistaken identity by the officers," Beck said.

Beck said the vehicle was being driven "in the area of one of our primary
protection details, one of the people that was under the most serious level of threat."

LAPD officers were protecting another officer named in the manifesto Dorner left behind.

The Los Angeles Times reported that the victims were women who were delivering newspapers, and one was shot in the back and one in a hand.

The second shooting, which involved Torrance police, occurred about 5:15 a.m. near the intersection of Flagler Lane and Beryl Street, across the street from the Redondo Beach city limits, according to Torrance police Sgt. Chris Roosen.

Roosen told reporters at a news conference that the officers were responding to a "shots fired" call when they saw the pickup truck.

"A Torrance Police patrol unit occupied by two officers encountered the black truck, collided with the vehicle, and an officer-involved shooting occurred," Roosen later said in a news release.

"The person that was driving the shot vehicle was not hit," Roosen said, who added that the person is cooperating with police. The pickup truck was not the suspect vehicle.

Roosen did not know how many shots the officers fired.

Officers with the Torrance Police Department were talking to neighbors to make sure everyone is OK. No nearby schools—including Beryl Heights Elementary School in Redondo Beach—were put on lockdown.

The investigation is ongoing. The LAPD is investigating the incident on Redbeam Avenue, while Torrance police are in charge of the scene at the intersection of Beryl Street and Flagler Avenue.

"Members of the Torrance Police Department would like to send our thoughts and prayers to all law enforcement agencies, their families, and all innocent people who have been affected by Christopher Dorner’s actions," Roosen said.

—City News Service contributed to this article.

Barbara Epstein February 09, 2013 at 07:02 AM
What does Obama have to do with this?
Mark Miller February 10, 2013 at 11:18 PM
Very sad about those two women in the pickup truck that got shot up. Not a good idea to drive around, weaving back and forth across the street with your lights off at 5am and not stop when the police try to flag you down, and then flick on your high beams and throw an object out the window at them when they're on high alert for a cop killer.... interesting how it gets skewed to police on rampage gun down two women for no reason. Man in pickup truck pulled over and questioned by police then released. Moments later, Second Police unit responding to shooting collides with pickup truck when truck failed to yield to police vehicle. Police believe that they are being rammed by the truck involved in the shooting. Air bag obscures officers view of the driver. Police fire 3 shots at vehicles windshield and demand the driver comply. Turns into "Man rammed by police and shot at with no warning or provocation." Not saying that these people had it coming, but I can understand how these unfortunate incidences took place.
Foo February 12, 2013 at 08:07 AM
Anyone else notice the article claims that the first shooting occurred at 5:20 am, and the second shooting at 5:15am?
joseph March 15, 2013 at 09:14 PM
Well its just funny Donner was against out of control cops and we have 2 incidents of gun happy shoot first ask question later cops. Anti cop no, anti getting shot by someone i pay to protect me yes. Do we know what happened to these guys are they in Jail for attempted homicide?
zz Baptiste April 22, 2013 at 10:41 PM
Redondo has a ton of dity cops and I know for 100 because I was married to one. These officers are nothing more than a gang. They terrorize and harrass all while breaking your civil rights. People u better wake up. They have throw away guns for christ sake and like I said I know.

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