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  /  News   /  Heroic Customer Stops Gunman at Waffle House, Shooter Still on the Loose
Waffle House, James Shaw Jr., Waffle House shooting

Heroic Customer Stops Gunman at Waffle House, Shooter Still on the Loose

A man who confronted a gunman who killed four people at a Nashville, TN Waffle House is being labeled a hero after he wrestled the gun away, CNN reports.

On Sunday, James Shaw Jr., 29, was at Waffle House where he heard gunshots ring out. He told reporters that he hid in the bathroom before ambushing the shooter when he noticed he briefly stopped.

“I figured if I was going to die, he was going to have to work for it,” Shaw told reporters.

Police suspect that Travis Reinking, 29, carried out the deadly Waffle House shooting. Reinking is still on the loose, according to CNN.

While wrestling the gunman, Shaw got injured when a bullet grazed his elbow.

“So he decided to rush the gunman, actually wrestled that assault rifle away, tossed it over the counter,” said Metro Nashville police spokesman Don Aaron. “At that point, the gunman then fled.”

Shaw said that he doesn’t see himself as a hero and admits he was acting for selfish reasons.
“I did that completely out of a selfish act,” he said. “I was completely doing it just to save myself. I don’t want people to think that I was the Terminator or Superman or anybody like that.”

Shaw may not consider himself a hero, but witnesses at the scene think he was.
“He was a hero… had that guy had a chance to reload his weapon, there was plenty more people in that restaurant,” said Chuck Cordero.
Taurean C. Sanderlin, 29, a Waffle House employee, Joe R. Perez, 20, Akilah Dasilva, 23, and DeEbony Groves, 21, were fatally wounded by Reinking.
Authorities added Reinking to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation’s “Top 10 Most Wanted” list.

Teddy is a multimedia journalist who serves as the culture and political writer for EBONY. His work has appeared in NBC's Owned and Operated stations, as well as DNAInfo, which covered local neighborhood news in New York City. He received his Masters in Journalism from the Craig Newmark School of Journalism at CUNY in 2017.