Tuscaloosa shooter captured and in custody

TUSCALOOSA, Alabama - A suspect in the early Tuesday assault-rifle shooting at a Tuscaloosa, Alabama, bar that left at least 17 wounded has been taken into custody after giving himself up, police said.

Police Chief Steven Anderson said the gunman walked into a store just before noon on Tuesday in Jasper, about an hour north of Tuscaloosa, and said authorities were looking for him.

"He told individuals he was wanted in an assault, and they called police," Anderson said at a news conference.

The chief would not identify the man, but said the shooter would face multiple charges of attempted murder and firing into an occupied building.

Anderson said the gunman may have been targeting someone, but the motive was unclear.

"We believe it was not a random act," Anderson said. "He walked up and was watching and observing people before he shot.

"The individuals who were there are very blessed that they were not killed," he said.

The shooting at the Copper Top bar in downtown Tuscaloosa may be connected to an earlier shooting at a residence in the nearby town of Northport, Anderson said. One person was injured in that incident.

The Tuscaloosa Police Department had posted surveillance video of the suspected shooter on its Facebook and Twitter accounts and asked the public for help finding the man, who Anderson said left the scene on foot.

The bar is popular among college students and young professionals, according to police.

Most of the 17 people transported to DCH Regional Medical Center for injuries related to the shooting suffered shrapnel wounds, said hospital spokesman Brad Fisher.

The victims ranged in age from early 20s to mid-30s, Fisher said. The police chief said three of the wounded were students at the University of Alabama, which is in Tuscaloosa.

Five people were admitted to the hospital, and 12 were treated and released as of mid-day Tuesday, Fisher said. One man remained in critical condition, one man was in serious condition and three other people were in fair condition.

"We were all just shooting pool and hanging out," the Tuscaloosa News quoted Riley Dunn, a University of Alabama senior, as saying.

Dunn suffered what he described as a shrapnel-like wound to the leg.

"It was kind of loud from the music, but we heard the gun shot and no one really knew what to think. The first gunshot took place, then about 20 seconds later, then that's when he really started firing them off. After that everyone really scattered."

(Additional reporting by Daniel Trotta and Kelli Dugan; Editing by Colleen Jenkins and Cynthia Osterman)