Panel Investigates Unique Challenges in Lewiston Massacre Search

The independent panel investigating the Lewiston massacre, in which 18 people lost their lives, delved into the unique challenges faced by law enforcement during the tragic incident. Maine state’s police chief, Col. Bill Ross, testified before the panel on Thursday, shedding light on the difficulties encountered during the search for gunman Robert Card, who later died by suicide. Ross emphasized that the Lewiston massacre stood out due to its two separate locations and the subsequent intense manhunt.

Ross acknowledged that the weight of finding Card grew heavier with each passing minute, as the suspect was not captured or deceased at the scene like in most other mass shootings. The police have faced criticism for the delay in locating Card’s body, despite quickly discovering his abandoned vehicle and conducting two unsuccessful searches at a nearby recycling facility. Maj. Lucas Hare, who heads Maine State Police operations division, explained that he hesitated to initiate a search in the woods surrounding the gunman’s car due to concerns about a potential ambush. Hare’s decision to wait for a SWAT team was met with some dissent, but he justified it by highlighting the possibility of Card possessing night-vision capabilities.

Hare also described the confusion and tension that ensued as multiple police agencies descended on the area, with some officers arriving independently and emergency calls flooding in. The situation prompted authorities to issue shelter-in-place orders for tens of thousands of residents while law enforcement focused on the shooting sites and the search for the armed Army reservist.

Author: CrimeDoor

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