Katie Tinnell Dobson's Family Seeks Witness and Answers in Death by Buena Park Police Car

Categories: News Roundups

A family member of a pedestrian who was killed when she was struck by a Buena Park police car is appealing to the public in hopes a witness or witnesses will come forward.

"I demand justice for Katie!" said the loved one, who asked to only be identified as the "family" of Katherine Tinnell Dobson. "She was so beautiful."

Katherine Tinnell Killed in Street by Buena Park Police Car

Buena Park Police Cpl. Andy Luong, the department spokesman, previously revealed that a woman was struck and killed around 1 a.m. Saturday by a Buena Park police car near Orangethorpe Avenue and Oregon Street.

The officer was heading to a call, Luong said, although the spokesman did not know if the lights and sirens were on or if the woman was in the crosswalks. He called it the first fatal accident involving a Buena Park cop car hitting a pedestrian, declined to name the officer behind the wheel and mentioned the California Highway Patrol's Westminster office is investigating. There are reports it was a canine unit.

Courtesy of the Dobson family
Katie Dobson's family wants a witness ... and answers.
The Orange County coroner's office identified the deceased as 33-year-old Katherine Tinnell, which is curious to the family because, they say, she was married to Rick Dobson and had "Ricky" tattooed on one hand and "Dobson" on the other. They say she went by Katie Dobson.

"We're so upset over this," the family said. "She was an amputee."

According to the family, "There was a witness with her."

They are trying to get ahold of the police report to see if the witness is mentioned.

"She was struggling but a great girl," the family said. "Kind and honest to a fault. ... She was a good person and this is so important to find out what really happened."

Email: mcoker@ocweekly.com. Twitter: @MatthewTCoker. Follow OC Weekly on Twitter @ocweekly or on Facebook!

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paullucas714 topcommenter

I wonder if there are traffic cameras in that intersection? If so you should be able to acquire the footage via the FOIA. Tony Bushala did that with the OCTA camera to get footage of Kelly Thomas' murder by 6 uniformed murderers.


@paullucas714 The police car has surveillance cameras running at all times in their vehicles. If they end up in court, they will have to surrender their footage in discovery, however, it wouldn't be the first time police footage was "mistakenly lost" when it incriminates an officer.

18usc241 topcommenter

Great observation Paul. It's great to see fellow Americans understanding that we can turn around and use this surveilllance state apparatus to our benefit.

MatthewTCoker topcommenter

@paullucas714 I may be wrong, but I believe it would depend on who owns the video. OCTA is a public agency. I don't know that corner in Buena Park well enough to know if there are public bldgs with cameras around there.

paullucas714 topcommenter

@OCreader @paullucas714 

Trust me, Im the last person who would be standing up for Buena Park PD for anything. I have a civil suit pending against the BPPD for an assault perpetuate on me by a cop that has since been forced to "retire" at the ripe old age of 32. And this is the same guy that helped murdered Juan Herrera in 2007 costing Buena Park 5 million dollars in a wrongful deaths suit.However, I seriously doubt any cop would intentionally run over a lady in a cross walk let alone an amputee. He may have been texting or looking the other way or just stupid. But I doubt he was aiming for the poor lady.

18usc241 topcommenter

Which is called felony obstruction of justice within the context of a person's death - aka muy malo. These OC cops have been conned into thinking this is OK. But it's not OK.

paullucas714 topcommenter

@MatthewTCoker @paullucas714 Matt I was referring to the traffic cameras that are used to monitor traffic in order to manipulate the lights in times of traffic emergencies or rush hour traffic to keep the cars moving along efficiently.


@paullucas714 @OCreader  Also, even tho it wasn't done intentionally, they could win a wrongful death lawsuit, as it was still his fault. Normally, the pedestrian always has the right of way.


@paullucas714 @OCreader I am not accusing him of running her over intentionally, I am just saying there is the surveillance video they are looking for.

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