BOISE – Police encountered an “ongoing shooting spree” when they arrived at the Boise Towne Square mall last October, an Idaho prosecutor said in a report this month, and a Boise Police Department officer’s attempt to use deadly force against the assailant was justified.
The Boise Police Department announced in a news release Thursday that Twin Falls County Prosecuting Attorney Grant Loebs determined an officer took necessary action at the mall on Oct. 25. The officer was not named in the release, but previous Statesman reporting from official accounts of that day show that BPD Officers Jason Shofner and Chris Dance were the ones who engaged with shooter Jacob Bergquist.
Bergquist walked through the mall for 24 minutes before eventually opening fire, killing two people and injuring several others. He walked away from an encounter with security guard Jo Acker but quickly turned around and shot Acker, according to previous Statesman reporting. That started the assault, with Bergquist “walking backward while shooting down the main corridor of the mall” before heading into Macy’s and firing shots.
After he left the mall, body camera footage showed Bergquist shooting at two Boise police officers in their vehicle. They had arrived within minutes and encountered Bergquist behind Dave and Buster’s, and returned fire, according to police reports.
One of the officer’s firearms became inoperable, so he attempted to hit Bergquist with a patrol car.
Bergquist shot himself in the head behind a building, dying within 7 minutes after he began shooting in the mall, according to police.
Loebs said in his report, according to the BPD release, that the officer was “not only lawfully attempting to apprehend a violent felon and defend other Law Enforcement Officers, but was acting in self-defense and to stop an ongoing shooting spree which had taken the lives of two citizens and was a threat to the lives of others.”
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