A Torrance police officer who opened fire on a pickup truck during the manhunt for former Los Angeles police Officer Christopher Dorner was justified in his actions and will not face any criminal charges, the District Attorney's Office announced Tuesday.
Prosecutors concluded that Officer Brian McGee "did not commit any criminal misconduct" on Feb. 7 of last year when he rammed David Perdue's truck with a patrol car, then fired three shots through the driver's side window.
The incident occurred at the border of Torrance and Redondo Beach near the intersection of Flagler Lane and Beryl Street.
According to a charge evaluation worksheet prepared by Deputy District Attorney Geoffrey Rendon, McGee acted reasonably in light of the ongoing search for Dorner, who had killed two people at that point and went on to kill two others—a Riverside police officer and San Bernardino County sheriff's deputy.
"McGee's actions are analyzed based on the totality of circumstances, which include McGee's knowledge of Dorner's previous threats and actions in the days and hours preceding these events, which gave rise to an atmosphere of fear and extreme anticipation," Rendon wrote. "Those circumstances created a situation in which a reasonable mistake of fact, namely that Dorner was driving the truck, nearly resulted in a horrific tragedy.
"Nonetheless, given the circumstances, as detailed above, we conclude that Officer McGee was justified in using force to stop the vehicle and in discharging his firearm. Therefore, prosecution in this matter is declined and this office will take no further action."
Perdue has filed a federal lawsuit against the city and the officers over the shooting.
Although he was not struck by gunfire, he contends in his lawsuit that he suffered a concussion when his truck's airbag opened and that he has lingering physical and emotional problems.
"He now moves slowly and unsteadily," his lawsuit states. "His speech is altered. He has problems with his memory. He has nightmares."
Dorner, whose rampage was sparked by his dismissal from the LAPD, was found dead in the burned out remains of a Big Bear cabin after a shootout with law enforcement on Feb. 12. His death culminated a nearly week-long manhunt.
—City News Service.
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