Lawyers for the city of Los Angeles won a round in court Friday when a judge ruled that attorneys representing a former training officer for ex-LAPD Officer Christopher Dorner aren’t entitled to view all of the investigative reports and personnel records involving the late rogue officer.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Michael Stern said the motion for the release of documents filed by attorneys for Sgt. Teresa Evans was supported by arguments that contained too much “hearsay, speculation, supposition and assumption.”
The judge cited a sworn declaration offered by one of Evans’ attorneys, Leila K. Al Faiz, which he said had more lines stating “upon information and belief” than he had ever seen in such a document. He said the motion was not the correct one “procedurally or substantively” and that he was doubtful the problems could be overcome with another motion.
Dorner killed himself in a February 2013 standoff with police in San Bernardino County. Sgt. Teresa Evans alleges in a lawsuit filed last October that she is being made a scapegoat because of the racial connotations attached to Dorner’s claims before he died. Evans is White and Dorner was black.
Evans’ lawsuit maintains she was harassed by LAPD supervisors due to the “racial tension sparked by Dorner” and because of her complaints that she was being discriminated against because of her race. Her attorneys wanted investigative files and Dorner’s personnel records to help them prepare their client’s case for trial, but the City Attorney’s Office argued in their court papers that the information sought by Evans’ lawyers was too broad.
Dorner, who lived with his mother in La Palma, promised warfare on LAPD officers and their families for what he believed was his unjustified termination. The 33-year-old Navy reserve officer killed four people during his nearly one-week run from authorities, including the daughter of an LAPD captain and her fiance.
He died a few days later from a self-inflicted gunshot wound during a confrontation with authorities at a cabin in the San Bernardino Mountains community of Angelus Oaks.
Dorner reported Evans to LAPD supervisors for allegedly kicking a suspect three times in 2007. In 2009, the LAPD found in favor of Evans.
Dorner was charged with making false statements against a fellow officer. The LAPD decided to fire him in September 2008 for lying about the incident and he was formally terminated in February 2009.
—City News Service