Police purportedly ignored the eyewitness testimony of two women who saw Nashat Milhem entering a bus after he gunned down three people in Tel Aviv, Army Radio reported Wednesday.
The Israeli Arab terrorist boarded the bus in north Tel Aviv with bloodstains on his shirt shortly after killing taxi driver Amin Shaban.
The two women identified Milhem after his photograph was published on the news the evening of the attack and informed their boss.
He subsequently attempted to reach the police hotline set up for information on Milhem's whereabouts. Despite calling numerous times, no one called back to ask for more details.
It was only after Milhem was found and eliminated – a week after the deadly attack – that police followed up on the women's report, at the request of Kol Israel radio.
Police at the time did not comment on the matter, but sources close to the investigation confirmed to Reshet Bet that the women's information had been verified by police investigators.
Israel Police has now said in response, "The call was received by the hotline hours after the event and after the young women had gotten off the bus, as one of thousands of calls to the hotline the Israel Police treated in in accordance with the complex variables."
"The call to the hotline was examined and it was found that despite the uncertainty many actions were taken, such as finding the bus driver and questioning the relevant witnesses. Upon completely of the operation to capture the terrorist, Police Commissioner Roni Alshich ordered a comprehensive examination of the functionality of all units involved in the operation."
It was also revealed earlier Wednesday that Milhem had been planing additional terror attacks against Jewish Israelis.
While he carried out the Tel Aviv shooting alone, police discovered evidence he had been watching extremist religious content and was documenting his hatred of the so-called enemies of Islam.
The Shin Bet released video footage Milhem took of himself in the days before the attack in which he ranted against Shia Muslims, Jews and Christians, including US President Barack Obama.