RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — In an interview with 8News, Richmond Police Chief Gerald Smith admitted that there could have been better communication in regards to the alleged Fourth of July mass shooting plot.

When asked for more details on the anonymous tip that led to the arrest of Julio Cesar Alvarado-Dubon and Rolman Balcarcel-Bavagas, Smith told 8News that, in order to preserve the tipster’s anonymity, he would not elaborate further.

“What I will say about the tipster is the tipster is real,” Smith said.

Smith also confirmed that the tipster had not overheard a conversation about the alleged mass shooting plot but had gotten his information directly from one of the two suspects.

Smith also said that given the hundreds of rounds of ammunition found at the home of the two suspects, there’s no telling how many lives were saved as this plot was foiled.

“I could not say how many lives, but I could say that it was numerous. It was a great number of lives that we — the men and women of RPD — preserved with their actions,” he said.

Smith also explained the reason that only one suspect, Alvarado, was taken into custody during the search of the suspects’ home.

“Because the detectives did not have [probable cause] to actually take him into custody,” Smith said, referring to Balcarcel. “I think it is very admirable of them to do the right thing and stay within the legal bound of their authority.”

For the full story, read our coverage from Tuesday night’s report.