A witness in the case against Maj. Nidal Hasan recalled Tuesday the sound that the accused Fort Hood shooter made as he walked down the halls of the processing center where he'd opened fire that November day.
Shell casings were wedged in the tread of Hasan's combat boots, making a distinctive "clack, clack" as he walked, said Ted Coukoulis, a civilian nurse, on the sixth day of the alleged shooter's military hearing.
Coukoulis testified in the Article 32 evidentiary hearing that will determine whether the case will proceed to a court martial and the possible death penalty for Hasan.
"It was a casual walk," Coukoulis said, comparing it to how someone would walk through a mall. "He stopped firing and started walking toward where I was - clack, clack, clack."
The nurse also described how Hasan shot and killed three soldiers nearby as they stared directly at the shooter.
"They were looking at death, and they knew it," he said of the soldiers, all of whom were killed.
Hasan then looked at Coukoulis, the witness said.
"I was approximately a foot away from the weapons," Coukolis testified. "Then he walked casually out of the building."
The nurse, who was not injured, further explained how he tried to offer first aid to shooting victims but had trouble walking around.
"It was slippery from the blood, the blood clots, the spent ammunition," he said.
He said pools of blood looked like they had come from a garden soaker hose.
"It was everywhere, it was like a horror show," he said.
Coukolis had had a run-in with Hasan the week before, he said. ¬†He remembered the major on the day of the Fort Hood shooting because the Army psychiatrist had argued with medical staff a week earlier about a smallpox innoculation, which was part of his preparation for deployment to Afghanistan.
The argument was over whether Hasan had received a flu shot or flu mist previously and whether he could get the smallpox shot.
Hasan was uncooperative and that Coukoulis referred him to the head nurse, he said.
Coukoulis was the 42nd witness called by the prosecution. Asked to identify the Fort Hood shooter, he stood up in the witness box, pointed to Hasan and said, "He's right there."
Earlier in the hearing, prosecutors played a 911 tape of nurse Kimberly Huseman bearing grim news as gunshots were heard in the background.
"Oh my God, we have about 15 down," she said on the tape.
Huseman dabbed her eyes with a tissue as the 8-minute call was played. ¬†Afterward, she told the hearing about what happened before she made that call, saying she heard a male voice screaming, though she could not make out what he was saying.
Another person in her office said to get down. They shut the door and called 911.