To be fair, the likelihood of him operating his registered vehicle while being sought out in state wide manhunt is extremely remote. Hence as to why he was in a stolen car.
Except that shortly after this incident they found Dorner's burned-out truck, in the area where he was eventually apprehended. So perhaps the odds were not as remote as you're categorically stating them to be. Not to mention the police specifically cited the similarity of the vehicle as a rationale for firing.
And in the photo of the shot up vehicle you simply can't see inside due to darkened tints. I wasn't there to say why the officers shot, but when given the totality of the facts I would doubt if you, Monday morning QB, would calmly have walked up to the vehicle like it was a Sunday stroll in the park.
I'd say there's a pretty robust middle ground between "calmly walk up to the vehicle whistling a merry tune" and "fire dozens of rounds into a vehicle with no positive ID and no indication of threat other than stopping near the residence of a police officer". Especially considering they did the same thing again shortly later in the same area.
It's certainly possible there were unreported circumstances that mitigated this, but they would have to be pretty extraordinary to consider this an appropriate response by the police, and simply assuming they were present is just Monday morning quarterbacking in the opposite direction.
Finding his truck and him actually driving his truck are two different things. Tactically speaking that would be the worst thing he could do. So if he's an untrained idiot, without any sense of tactical training and/or experience, then yes he might be in his own vehicle. However, considering his experience in both military and law enforcement, it would be extremely remote.
Wait, are you arguing that his truck was found in Big Bear, he was (later) found in Big Bear, but he didn't drive his truck to Big Bear? That seems extremely unlikely. What's the tactical decision here - he towed his truck there to fool the police into searching for him where he was?
I'm not Monday morning QB'ing the situation. I'm just saying that in this specific case there are factors that you didn't point out and factors that are still unknown. You stated that the vehicle didn't match, which was completely irrelevant.
How is it completely irrelevant when the police specifically cited the similarity of the vehicle as their rationale for believing both of the trucks to be Dorner?
A team of Los Angeles police officers protecting the home of a high-ranking officer in the 19500 block of Redbeam Avenue believed a pickup truck that stopped in front of the house matched Dorner's blue Nissan Titan.
...at that point, a driver in another pickup truck that look similar to Dorner's drove toward them on Flagler Lane near Beryl Street. Officers, suspecting it was Dorner, purposely collided with the truck and shot at him. http://www.dailynews.com/news/ci_22544264/police-suspecting-christopher-dorners-arrival-shoot-3-innocent
It sounds like you've independently decided Dorner must have abandoned his vehicle and are flatly denying all the evidence that he was actually in his truck, the police expected him to be in his truck, and they were, at that time, right to assume so.
Like Roy, I'm sympathetic to the cops; it's a tough job on an ordinary day and this was no ordinary day. Don't envy them being in that position one bit. But that doesn't give them carte blanche to open fire on innocent people in multiple situations based on a superficial resemblance to the guy they were looking for.