Nicola “Nikki” Taysom watched her neighbor follow two men through the hallway of their downtown apartment building and then continue after them down the stairs before she heard a gunshot.
She next found him writhing in pain in the stairwell; smoke appeared to be rising from his mouth. The victim of the shooting early in the morning of Jan. 20 has now reportedly been released from the hospital and returned home, thanks in large part to Taysom’s medical training and decisive actions.
Taysom recently recounted the details of the shooting, which occurred in apartments in the 300 block of West Clark Street. Police said the investigation remains open and they’re asking the public for any information about the two suspects.
Taysom described one suspect as a man in his 40s who is about 5-foot-8 and stocky with an unshaven face, graying hair and a light-colored jacket. She said the other suspect is in his 20s or 30s, has a pale face, brown hair, is 6 feet tall, has a medium build and wore a dark coat.
Taysom noticed her neighbor had a blood spot on his belt, so she lifted his shirt and saw the bullet wound, with the bullet lodged just beneath the surface of his skin.
Another woman in the building brought Taysom a clean rag, which she folded and used to apply pressure to the wound. Taysom also covered him with blankets and assured him he would be OK.
“He was awake and alert,” said Taysom, who has been certified as a wilderness first responder and an American Heart Association CPR instructor. “He said, ‘I’m going to die.’ I said, ‘No you’re not.’”
Taysom assured him there wasn’t much blood and the bullet wasn’t deep while they waited for an ambulance to arrive.
Taysom said her neighbor had a knife in his clenched hand, but it remained folded closed, contrary to initial reports. She believes her neighbor posed no threat to the two men. She said he wasn’t running after them and he never shouted.
“There was no need to shoot him. Just go out the door and leave,” she said.
Taysom said she has no idea what motivated the shooting and she heard very little dialogue between the two men and the victim. She returned home after 2:30 a.m. and saw the men knocking on the door of another neighbor. She said she overheard the two men ask the neighbor and another woman who was with her if they were OK.
Taysom said the shooting victim then entered the hallway, and it became clear that he didn’t like the two men. He then walked in their direction as they headed out of the hallway.
If you have any information regarding the suspects in this case, please contact Pocatello police at 208-234-6100.