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Nathan Van Wilkins, accused Ala. bar shooter, fired from job after fistfight, police say

This booking photograph released by the Tuscaloosa County Sheriff's Department shows Nathan Van Wilkins, 44, who was charged in an early morning shooting that left 17 people injured in a bar in Tuscaloosa, Ala., on Tuesday, July 17, 2012. Police said Wilkins was charged initially with one count of attempted murder, but other charges will be filed. AP Photo/Tuscaloosa County Sheriff's Department

Nathan Van Wilkins
Booking photo of Nathan Van Wilkins, who is charged in a shooting attack that left 17 people injured in a bar in Tuscaloosa, Ala. on July 17, 2012
AP Photo/Tuscaloosa County Sheriff's Department

(CBS/AP) BROOKWOOD, Ala. - Police said Nathan Van Wilkins was fired from his job after a fistfight with a co-worker three months before he allegedly opened fire with an assault rifle at an Alabama bar Tuesday.

Brookwood Assistant Police Police Chief Jimmy Sellers said Wilkins was angry about being fired from Capstone Oilfield last April, and he was pressing assault charges against the other man.

It's not clear what role the firing may have played in the shootings that wounded 17 people. Sellers said he's not aware of any connection between the shooting victims and the company. Wilkins reportedly had many stresses in his life that include a divorce and a bankruptcy filing.

Police have charged the Wilkins, 44, with 18 counts of attempted murder. Wilkins is also suspected of setting three fires to equipment or property owned by Capstone.

Complete coverage of Nathan Van Wilkins on Crimesider

  • Crimesider Staff

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