Jemison man identified as St.Vincent’s hospital shooter

Published 4:14 pm Sunday, December 16, 2012

Authorities are continuing an investigation of a Jemison man who fired shots at Birmingham police officers before being shot to death on Saturday at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Birmingham.

According to a release, officers from the South Precinct of the Birmingham Police Department responded to St. Vincent’s Hospital at 4 a.m. to investigate a report of a person with a gun. Upon arrival, officers located the suspect, Jason Letts, 38, of Jemison, on the fifth floor hallway.

As officers approached, Letts started firing a handgun at the officers, striking one officer and two members of the hospital staff. An assisting BPD officer returned gunfire fatally wounding the suspect. Due to the circumstances at the scene, the victims were transported to a neighboring hospital for treatment. The three victims’ injuries are not life threatening. Letts was pronounced dead on the scene.

Birmingham police chief A.C. Roper said in a release, “In light of the recent mass shooting in Connecticut, too many of these incidents end with unimaginable tragedy. I am amazed at the bravery of our officers as they confronted this armed gunman in the hallway.

“The hospital staff and especially the security team should also be commended because they performed with selfless service which contained the incident until the officers’ arrival.”

Jemison police chief Shane Fulmer said Letts was from the Union Grove community and the Jemison Police Department had not had dealings with Letts prior to Saturday’s shooting.

“The only information we had on him was he was issued a speeding citation in March 2010,” Fulmer said. “That is all we had on him.”

The Alabama Bureau of Investigation (ABI) is the lead agency investigating the shooting. The BPD Homicide Unit and Internal Affairs Division are also conducting investigations.