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Police: Man who fired at deputies likely still in New Meadows area

Idaho State Police and the Adams County Sheriff's Office are still looking for William James, a man considered armed and dangerous.
Credit: Adams County Sheriff's Office
The Adams County Sheriff's Office announced Saturday that William "Bill" James is in jail on suspicion of the attempted murder of two deputies.

BOISE, Idaho — The Idaho State Police and the Adams County Sheriff's Office are still on the lookout for an armed and dangerous man that fired shots at two deputies Sunday evening.

The suspect has been identified as 23-year-old William “Bill” James, an Adams County resident.

Idaho State Police Captain Kevin Haight says James is well-known to local, state and federal law enforcement. He’s had numerous run-ins with police.

Haight says the incident started Sunday evening with a call to Adams County dispatch that James was in violation of civil protection order. Two deputies went to a residence near New Meadows. When they arrived, James took cover in an equipment shed and fired several shots at their patrol cars, striking one of the vehicles multiple times, Haight said. No one was injured.

At the same time, an off-duty Idaho Fish and Game officer saw what was happening from another position across the road. That officer fired shots at James to attract his attention away from the deputies, Haight said. The deputies were able to get to safe cover.

An Idaho State Police SWAT team of about 10 members was called in to assist. A section of Highway 55 was blocked to traffic. The highway has since reopened.

RELATED: Authorities seek man who tried to kill deputies near New Meadows

Haight says James fled the scene on foot and is still on the loose. He says the immediate search area is filled with old homes, sheds, RVs and plenty of places to stay well hidden.

Law enforcement across Idaho has reached out to assist in the search. Haight says they’ve received offers of support from the Meridian Police Department, Owyhee County Sheriff’s Office, Ada County Sheriff's Office, Valley County Sheriff’s Office, Washington County Sheriff’s Office, U.S. Forest Service, Idaho Fish and Game and the U.S. Marshals Service.

The Spokane County Sheriff’s Office has also reached out and offered to bring in their helicopter to assist in the search for the suspect. Haight says inclement weather has impeded the chopper from flying, but it is on standby should conditions improve.

James is believed to still be in the area. Haight said he was spotted several times by people on Monday afternoon, but has managed to elude authorities.

Credit: ACSO
William James is wanted for the attempted murder of two Adams County Sheriff's deputies.

Haight says a warrant for James’ arrest has been issued. He is charged with two counts of attempted murder, two counts of assault with intent to commit a serious felony and one count of assault/battery upon certain personnel.

Anyone who has seen James should not approach him. Instead, you are urged to contact police immediately. 

We will update this story as more information becomes available.

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