Alabama church shooter was once convicted of DUI in Chattanooga

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – As media try to find out more about the man charged with shooting three older members of an Alabama church, they’ve found a Chattanooga connection.

70 year old Robert Findlay Smith is charged with shooting and killing people at a Boomers Potluck last week at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Vestavia.

Police now say Smith was sitting alone, when a church member invited him to join them at their table.

They say after refusing, he pulled a gun and began shooting at the 25 people at the dinner.

A church member knocked him down with a chair and got the gun away from him.

But he had already killed three people ranging in age from 75-84. reports that Smith was actually a licensed gun dealer, selling out of his house.

He did not have a history of violent encounters, but there was one DUI offense in Chattanooga.

In 2005, he was charged with DUI and possession of a handgun while intoxicated.

He pleaded guilty to the DUI and paid a fine.  The gun charge was dropped.

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