It was originally reported that the captives were two housekeepers, a mother and daughter. But it was Karen and Jim Reynolds, owners of Mountain Vista Resort, who were face-to-face with the rogue ex-Los Angeles police officer accused of carrying out a killing spree. The Reynolds had entered a vacant unit and surprised the fugitive who was hiding out.
"He ran out of the back bedroom, that's when we discovered him, so he yelled, 'Be calm,' but Karen panicked and started running, so he chased her," Jim Reynolds recounted. The Reynolds's cabin was located just a few hundred feet from the command post where media and law enforcement officers gathered for four days in search of him.
The couple said Dorner had his gun drawn the entire time.
In the next 15 minutes, Dorner bound and gagged the couple with extension cords and plastic ties that bit into their wrists. He also pulled pillowcases over their heads and told them frequently he would not kill them.
"He told us about the man in the boat in San Diego," Karen Reynolds said.
"He said he didn't kill him, he wasn't going kill us," her husband added.
The couple said Dorner referred to his dispute with the LAPD.
"He said, 'I don't have a problem with you, I just want to clear my name,'" Jim Reynolds said.
After that, Dorner left and stole their vehicle. They managed to remove the gags and to their surprise, he left Karen Reynold's cellphone behind on the coffee table. They placed a 911 call.
Hours later, Dorner is believed to have engaged deputies in a shootout that left one deputy dead. He barricaded himself inside an Angelus Oaks cabin that went up in flames. A charred body was found there later that night.
"I didn't wish him dead, though, at any point, I really didn't," Karen Reynolds said. "I prayed for him a lot and I am praying for his family now."
The Reynolds said they didn't expect to collect the $1 million reward offered for Dorner's capture. They said their payoff was escaping the encounter with their lives.