70-year-old man indicted in deadly Vestavia Hills church shooting

(Jefferson County Jail)
Published: Jul. 29, 2022 at 3:52 PM CDT
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VESTAVIA HILLS, Ala. (WBRC) - The 70-year-old man accused of shooting and killing three people at a Vestavia Hills church in June 2022 was indicted by a Jefferson County grand jury in July.

Robert Findlay Smith was charged with capital murder involving the deaths of three people at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Vestavia Hills on Thursday, June 16.

Investigators said Walter Rainey, Sarah Yeager, and Jane Pounds were shot and killed during a Boomer’s Potluck Dinner.

Vestavia Hills Police said Smith entered the gathering at the church and started shooting. Officers said Smith acted alone.

An attendee at the potluck dinner event subdued the shooter, holding him until police arrived. Capt. Shane Ware with the Vestavia Hills Police said, “The person that subdued him is a hero.”

Saint Episcopal Church following shooting.
Saint Episcopal Church following shooting.(Source: Morgan Hightower/WBRC)
Saint Episcopal Church following shooting.
Saint Episcopal Church following shooting.(Source: Morgan Hightower/WBRC)
Saint Stephen's Episcopal Church.
Saint Stephen's Episcopal Church.(Source: Morgan Hightower/WBRC)

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