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TUSCALOOSA COUNTY, AL (WBRC) -
The man charged with opening fire in a crowded bar in Tuscaloosa early Tuesday morning made his first court appearance today.
Nathan Wilkins had a hearing with a magistrate through a video conferencing system from the Tuscaloosa County Jail.
Wilkins, 44, is charged with 18 counts of attempted murder, one count each of firing into an occupied dwelling and firing into an occupied building. Court documents revealed that Wilkins approached the Copper Top bar on foot, fired a single shot into the building, then opened fire on the occupants of the bar as they ran outside.
Court documents also show that Wilkins is currently unemployed and his only income is less than $300 a week. Wilkins claims he has no savings or other financial assets. He also requested a court-appointed lawyer.
Older court documents show additional troubles in Wilkins' past. According to a police report, officers responded March 30 to Wilkins' former place of employment, Capstone Drilling, where they say Wilkins was involved in a fist fight with a coworker. The business was damaged in a fire early Tuesday morning and police are still investigating whether Wilkins set that fire.
Sometime between the fist fight and April 12, Wilkins was apparently fired from Capstone Drilling.
Court records also show that Wilkins divorced his wife of 16 years. She claims that he hit her, dragged her by her hair and threatened to kill her during their marriage. They have two children together.
Meanwhile, Wilkins' neighbors are coming to terms with the violent crime spree he's accused of committing at the Copper Top Bar in Tuscaloosa, at a home in Northport and a business in Brookwood.
His residence is in Northport's Buckhead subdivision. An elderly widow in the neighborhood told FOX6 News that Wilkins helped carry furniture into her home when she moved in. The allegations surprised her.
Another neighbor, Rhett Madden lives in the neighborhood as well. He told FOX6 News Wilkins had a "menacing appearance" and admits he was scared of him. Madden knew Wilkins for his motorcycle and the Confederate flag that flew in his year. He said the charges don't surprise him.
Of the five shooting victims who remained in the hospital Tuesday, three were discharged on Wednesday. One victim is still in serious condition and another is listed as in fair condition, according to a DCH official.