The Israel Border Police on Monday presented the results of an investigation it launched into the Oct. 8 terror attack in northeastern Jerusalem in which Military Police Sgt. Noa Lazar, 18, was killed.

During the attack at the Shuafat checkpoint, a vehicle drove up and a terrorist emerged from it, shooting at personnel from Border Police, the Israel Defense Forces and Defense Ministry security guards, as a shift change was underway. The gunman escaped on foot and the driver of the vehicle fled in the car.

A border policewoman and a Defense Ministry guard were also wounded in the attack.

Three Border Police officers, part of the standing force (rather than conscripts in mandatory service) were dismissed following the investigation, and proceedings to dismiss a fourth Border Police officer, who has been suspended, have begun. A Border Police company commander and battalion commander have both received critical remarks in their career files due to their performance at the time of the attack.

Soon after the attack, the driver surrendered to Israeli troops; the gunman was killed on Oct. 19 in an exchange of fire with security guards at Ma’ale Adumim after attempting to carry out a terror attack on the community.

According to an investigation ordered by Border Police commander Maj. Gen. Amir Cohen, the terrorists should have been apprehended or killed at the time of the Oct. 8 attack. Several shortcomings in the manner of command over the Shuafat checkpoint were discovered as the investigation progressed, Border Police said on Monday.

Failures were discovered in the speed and quality of the response to the attack, with an emphasis on the forces’ failure to strive to confront the shooter.

The investigation determined that the presence of pedestrian activity at the crossing, which was permitted under the crossing’s regulations, constituted a serious error that allowed the terrorist to exit the car.

Although three Border Police officers did fire at the terrorist, the inquiry discovered that other Border Police officers at the scene did not respond as they should have.

Following the findings, Cohen ordered the Border Police to establish a mandatory standard for conducting training exercises at the crossing, as well as a new oversight mechanism.

He also directed the head of the Border Police’s training school to create a dedicated course to teach officers how to command crossings in the Jerusalem area. Cohen suggested that all crossings in the Jerusalem area be eventually given over to civilian security guard command, which he believes is better suited to such operations.

Following the probe, IDF Chief of Staff, Lt. Gen. Aviv Kochavi suspended the deployment of soldiers to the Shuafat checkpoint, concluding that they are not suited to such operations. He ordered that Border Police units perform security checks there in place of the IDF.

The Lazar family has received a copy of the investigation’s findings.

JNS

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