A former US cop on the run since last week has been charged with the murder of a policeman, one of three people he allegedly killed after making chilling online threats, officials said Monday.
Christopher Dorner, the subject of a huge manhunt after the alleged shootings near Los Angeles, was charged over the killing of officer Michael Crain, gunned down on Thursday.
The bitter 33-year-old has also been charged with three counts of attempted murder, for allegedly shooting at three other officers, said Paul Zellerbach, district attorney for Riverside County, east of Los Angeles.
Dorner, a naval reservist, is accused of killing a couple on February 3, then ambushing two policemen early Thursday, including Crain. He also injured another officer in a separate incident, before going on the run.
The manhunt initially centered on the snowy mountains around Big Bear, some two hours east of LA, after his burnt-out car was found abandoned there. But after four days, there appears little likelihood he will be found at the mountain resort.
The disgruntled former LA Police Department officer threatened to murder police and their families in a rambling manifesto posted online last week.
Some 50 LAPD officers and families have been placed under special protection. The couple murdered two weeks ago included the daughter of a former LAPD officer linked to the fugitive ex-cop’s dismissal in 2008.
In his manifesto, Dorner pledged to “bring unconventional and asymmetrical warfare to those in LAPD uniform whether on or off duty.”
On Saturday police announced they would open a new probe into Dorner’s firing from the LAPD, which apparently left him disgruntled and determined to exact revenge on the department.
On Sunday, LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa announced a $1 million reward for information leading to Dorner’s capture.