Officer shot gunman in exchange

Photo by Pat Lopez

Photo by Pat Lopez

FORT HOOD, Texas -- An Army psychiatrist who went on a shooting rampage at Fort Hood still had nearly 200 rounds of ammunition and a second gun in his pockets when he was shot by police, a military court heard Wednesday.

The gunman had already fired nearly 150 rounds inside a crowded medical building on Nov. 5 from a semiautomatic weapon, killing 13 and wounding dozens, Army investigator Kelly T. Jameson testified at a hearing to determine whether accused gunman Maj. Nidal Hasan will stand trial.

Authorities believe Hasan only fired the semiautomatic because bullets recovered from the victims were from that gun, Jameson said.

Sgt. Mark Todd, a civilian police officer at Fort Hood, told the Article 32 hearing that after responding to a call of ''shots fired,'' he saw a gunman outside a building and then saw the weapon's red laser sight pointing right at him.

''I said, 'Halt! Military police! Drop your weapon!''' Todd testified. Instead, the gunman ''fired a couple of rounds.'' Todd said he yelled at the shooter again, and the two exchanged gunfire.

Todd said he knew he hit the gunman because he fell. Todd said he then ran to him, kicked his gun away, handcuffed him and removed items from his pockets -- including a revolver and ammunition clips. Todd said he checked his vital signs as medics arrived to begin treating the gunman.

Army investigator Duane Mitchell testified that two laser sights were affixed to the gun used in the shooting. The green one is used during daylight, and the red one aids in darker conditions, he testified. Authorities found receipts from Nov. 2 and Nov. 3 in Hasan's car for watch batteries, the same kind used to power the laser sights, Mitchell said.

During the hearing, now in its second week, only one witness testified to seeing the shooter firing two guns that day in the building where soldiers get vaccines and medical tests before deploying. Others said they saw one gun but gave different descriptions. Some said they saw red and green lasers; others saw just one color or neither.

Several witnesses at the hearing have said the gunman in an Army combat uniform shouted ''Allahu Akbar!'' -- ''God is great!'' in Arabic -- then opened fired in a crowded waiting area. They say he kept firing rapidly, pausing only to reload, and shot people as they hid under tables or curled up in chairs -- even shooting soldiers after they fled outside.

Hasan is charged with 13 counts of premeditated murder and 32 counts of attempted premeditated murder.