Stevens Co. emergency alerts lead to complaints

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by MIKE GONZALEZ & KREM.com

KREM.com

Posted on October 14, 2013 at 7:56 PM

Updated Tuesday, Oct 15 at 9:18 AM

STEVENS COUNTY, Wash.-- An automated alert message went out to some people in Stevens County over the weekend, but now the alert is raising concerns.

The alert warned people to stay inside because of a man shooting at a motorcyclist. Yet, people said they never got any additional information on the alert.

Sheriff Kendle Allen said the incident started about 6:00 p.m. when 31-year-old Briton Hanson shot at a man on a motorcycle in Stevens County near Chewelah.

KREM 2 News spoke with Allen on Monday and he explained why more alerts did not go out. Stevens County leaders recently purchased a new alert system called Hyper Reach. The system allows landline and cell phone users to receive emergency warnings. Allen said they are still working out the bugs within the system.

Allen stated that he felt like the situation was not resolved so he made the call to keep things quiet.

“We just got this system we're figuring out how to use it,” added Allen. “We got that initial call and to call and give them initial all clear when there wasn't. The guy could have still been up in the woods and of course we're not sending our people in the woods in the middle of the night.”

The suspect has not been caught as of Monday night. Investigators have an idea of what caused the shooting. However, they are not releasing it yet. The man on the motorcycle was not hit by gun fire.

Allen believes Hanson is well armed with two hand guns and a rifle. Anyone with information about the shooting or the suspect is asked to call (509) 684-5296.

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