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Christopher Dorner

Carjack Victim Sues

For $1 Million Reward

4/29/2013 5:00 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

The man who was carjacked by cop killer Christopher Dorner hours before he was cornered in a cabin ... is suing the city of L.A. for the $1 million reward it offered to the public, but then pulled back over a loophole ... TMZ has learned.

In the lawsuit, filed today in LA, Richard Heltebrake describes how Dorner pulled a gun on him on Feb. 12, took his truck and then used it during a shootout with law enforcement. Dorner eventually ditched the truck before fleeing to the cabin where he died.

Heltebrake says once he was free he used his cell phone to call the San Bernardino Co. Sheriff to report the carjacking and Dorner's location.

Heltebrake believes he's owed, and indeed filed for, a ton of reward money that was offered -- $1 million from the city of L.A., $100k from Riverside County, and $100k each from the cities of Riverside and Irvine.

Three of those rewards were for "information leading to the apprehension and capture" of Dorner. Another was for "identification and apprehension."

The language is important because Dorner was not apprehended or captured -- but instead police say he died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound inside the burning cabin.

As TMZ first reported, L.A. officials were hesitant to pay up -- and in the suit, Heltebrake claims all the municipalities denied him any money.

Heltebrake wants at least $1 million -- as well as an order prohibiting anyone else from getting the reward money.


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I'm not surprised.

503 days ago


I hope he gets the money too! Eff that...I'd be sueing too

503 days ago

Tammy LM    

This guy deserves the money. So do the couple that was tied up. They also played a part in the capture, (yes, capture) of Dorner. Back in the day remember those wanted posters that say WANTED, Captured DEAD OR ALIVE? Not to say that Dorner was wanted dead or alive specifically. Don't misunderstand. My point is ...Captured dead or alive in those wanted posters meant the same thing. CAPTURED DEAD, or CAPTURED ALIVE. Meaning you can literally and technically CAPTURE someone dead. Both ways, you're still captured all the same. All a lawyer needs to do amoung other things is bring into court a number of those wanted posters and notifications that have the language printed on it in those terms and hopefully they could be used as a presidence.

Next you're damned if you do and damned if you don't as well. Because if you report a crime and it leads to an ending like this, the police wont pay the reward. If you know something about a crime and you don't report it to the police and they find out about it, you're charged with withholding information, or obstruction of justice. So if you don't tell you're charged, if you do you're not rewarded.

But the police captured Dorner. They captured him dead....not alive. But either way, Dorner was not coming out of that home unless he was in police possesion aka police custody. Being alive or dead makes no difference. He was CAUGHT, and had no way of escaping. A reward isn't given on the condition someone gets convicted or exicuted or not. It's upon the condition of being captured. When you capture something the word capture means to catch. To apprehend. To take control or possesion of. And because of the three people's actions that day, Dorner WAS captured. Take that memo to court.

And to some of the jerks posting how this guy is greedy. You shove it. You'd do the same thing if you were stiffed that much money yourselves. Every last one of you. Every SINGLE last one of you. And if you say you wouldn't you're lying! That money was raised and set aside for whomever helped capture this madman. So now that the money wont be given to it's rightful owners, the police department and the city officials wants to keep it for themselves. I don't think so. When you have nothing and you come across a situation that will reward you for the assistance your provide, you do deserve it. It doesn't make you greedy. Being greedy is demanding something you didn't earn. He earned that. He did what was asked of everyone on the reward. He was just lucky enough (pardon the ill use of the word LUCKY) to be at the right place at the right time to be able to help. Cir***stance chose him and he deserves the pay out.

503 days ago


they offered the reward and he should get it. they should pay him because next time someone dangerous is on the loose, people might not call in. money will always get results.

503 days ago


Shouldn't get a red cent for snitching. He got everything he deserves, nothing.

503 days ago


I think he should get 'some' of that reward..but not should be 'split' between him and the 'old couple' who lived in the cabin.. that Dorner tied up at gun point!..of course the city is 'screwing'him/them out of the reward..they always look for a loop hole! they don't have to pay!.

503 days ago


In the future, when reward is offered, information will be harder to get. it might take longer, because informant will propably call a lawyer to negotiate a watertight deal.

503 days ago


Chris Dorner is a hero and I hope his plight doesn't fade into obscurity.

503 days ago


He's probably going to lose, but that being said. Govt agency's hardly ever pay out those things.They are specifically written out not to pay. Along with identification,apprehension and capture. They will also stick in conviction. So even if you do meet the first three, now you have to wait until the end of the trial then all the appeals, then the Govt saying "well we convicted him on our own not because of you"

503 days ago


You NEVER hear, of anyone paying up, for info. It is just a ploy to get ppl to help them out. I am game for helping. But don't use $$ and lie, when you know, that you are NOT going to ever pay that person. Sue em! Get the $$ You DID what they asked ppl to do! So they need to pay up!

503 days ago


Smh I hate America people are always thinking they are owed something smh fucccck ouuttta here

503 days ago


Always trying to find a way to make money ....I just think he wants acknowledgment fir being involved in it

503 days ago


Apprehension: seizure by legal process.
Capture: To seize

Is there any legal precedent in California law that says, when these two words are used in regard to a human, it carries the assumption of a living human? They did capture and / or apprehend Dorner. He had killed himself before they got there.

Jacking victim provided the info, pay the man.

503 days ago


greedy little jerk. oh and by the way, he was one of the victims. is he trying to say if it were not for the reward he would not have reported the carjacking???? if the money is going to be handed out the couple from the condo deserve
an EQUAL share.

503 days ago


greedy little jerk. oh and by the way, he was one of the victims. is he trying to say if it were not for the reward he would not have reported the carjacking???? if the money is going to be handed out the couple from the condo deserve
an EQUAL share.

503 days ago
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