LOS ANGELES --- The California couple held hostage by Christopher Dorner, the ex-LAPD officer suspected of killing four people, said their ordeal lasted a few minutes but seemed like hours.
Karen and Jim Reynolds said at a news conference Wednesday that they think Dorner, 33, was holed up in their unoccupied cabin in Big Bear, Calif., since Friday, only steps from where police had set up a command center.
"He said four or five times that he didn't have a problem with us, he just wanted to clear his name," Jim Reynolds said. "He said I don't have a problem with you, so I'm not going to hurt you."
Dorner tied their arms and put pillowcases over their heads before fleeing in their purple Nissan, the couple said.
Before he fled, the couple said Dorner told them that he had been watching them before he took over their cabin. Dorner told the couple he could tell they were "hard working, good people."
"He had been watching us and saw me shoveling the snow Friday," Jim Reynolds said.
They say they may have left the cabin door unlocked and that could have been the reason Dorner was able to enter undetected.
Dorner remained "calm and meticulous" throughout the harrowing ordeal, the couple said.
The Reynolds were some of the last people to see Dorner before his apparently final encounter with police. Their 911 call to police triggered a fiery standoff with police at another nearby cabin.
Charred remains of the body believed to be Dorner were removed from the cabin high in Big Bear Wednesday, the apparent site of Dorner's last stand.
The Reynolds walked into their cabin around noon Tuesday when they came face-to-face with Dorner. There was no question in their minds who he was, the suspected cop killer at the center of one of the largest manhunts in recent memory.
"I thought we were dead," Jim Reynolds said with a nervous chuckle.
The whole ordeal lasted about 15 minutes, but felt much longer for the couple.
"It felt like 15 hours with him," Karen Reynolds said.
Dorner, Reynolds said, first asked them to remain calm. Reynolds screamed and attempted to escape before Dorner caught up with her.
"I never even knew my reaction would be to run, but it was," she said.
Dorner tied them up and told them they were a means to his end, and wanted their car to escape.
"At first he kneeled down beside me and said, "You're going to be quiet, right? Don't make a muss, don't try and get loose. Give me time,'" Jim Reynolds said.
The Reynolds' finally managed to break free and untie themselves after Dorner escaped with their car.
Earlier reports stated that two female maids were taken hostage by Dorner.
After Dorner fled the Reynolds' cabin, he moved to another cabin in the area where he apparently engaged in a shootout with police, killing one deputy and wounding another, before the building was consumed by flames.
"We did not intentionally burn down that cabin to get Mr. Dorner out," San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon told reporters Wednesday evening, although he noted that pyrotechnic canisters known as "burners" were fired into the cabin during a tear-gas assault in an effort to flush out Dorner.
The canisters generate high temperatures, he added.