- Associated Press - Monday, December 12, 2016

TWIN FALLS, Idaho (AP) - Miscommunication between police and dispatchers caused a delay in response to a reported shooting incident in Twin Falls.

Police are investigating a shooting that occurred Tuesday at the impound lot of A-1 Towing in Twin Falls, The Times-News reported (https://bit.ly/2gRoSY2). Charles Legg said he was shot at twice by someone trying to steal a pickup truck.

Legg called 911 at about 6 a.m. as the suspect fled but officers didn’t arrive on scene until almost a half hour later.

“You’d think they’d send two or three officers right away,” Legg said. “He ran into my service truck, he fired two shots at me . this is a serious deal.”

Twin Falls Police Chief Craig Kingsbury said it took so long to respond because the initial 911 call came just before a shift change. As one dispatcher replaced another, there was a breakdown in information.

Kingsbury said police were told that the shooter was no longer on the scene, but then officers were also concerned about an ambush, causing delays.

“There was some concern with the shots fired,” Kingsbury said. “We wanted to make sure we weren’t running into an ambush.”

He said his officers have been on high alert lately amid several high-profile cases of gunmen ambushing or attacking police officers responding to service calls across the country. Closest to Idaho and most recently, an officer in Tacoma, Washington, was killed on Dec. 1 when he was responding to a home for the report of a domestic disturbance.

Kingsbury said the delayed response in Legg’s case is rare and that Twin Falls residents shouldn’t worry that police are taking extra time.

“When somebody calls 911 for help, it’s never as quick as you want - you want an officer there right then,” Kingsbury said. “I can ensure the public we are going to try to do that every time. We know our job is dangerous, the men and women of the Twin Falls Police Department understand that. With that said, we want respond as safely as possible, and if we crash trying to get somewhere too fast, or walk into an ambush, that doesn’t do anybody any good.”

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Information from: The Times-News, https://www.magicvalley.com


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