Waffle House 'Hero' Says He 'Felt Like A Fish In A Barrel' Before Wrestling Gun Away

The Waffle House shooting began at 3:23 AM on Sunday, April 22. A man who has been identified as Travis Reinking approached the restaurant in the Antioch neighborhood of Nashville, Tennessee, wearing only a green jacket and an AR-15 rifle. He opened fire outside Waffle House before entering, where he continued firing. Four people died and others were injured by shots and broken glass. The shooter only stopped when James Shaw Jr., a young man inside Waffle House, attacked him while recharging. Shaw has spoken with the media to tell his actions during the Waffle House shooting.

James Shaw Jr., 29, who is also the father of a four-year-old daughter, was only found at Antioch Waffle House so early in the morning because another Waffle House location they had gone to was "too busy. " He told Michael Strahan in Good Morning America that he saw Reinking waiting in his truck in the parking lot, but he did not think anything about it. "I saw his face, we saw each other and we went in," Shaw said. When the shooting started, Shaw ran to the bathroom area of ​​the Waffle House, looking for cover behind a door.

"In fact, I stayed in the hall because I did not want to be locked in there with hardly any line of sight and I just wanted to keep an eye on it to see what was going on," Shaw told Good Morning America. It was while hiding in this area that Shaw was grazed by a bullet from Reinking's gun. "So, actually, he fired through that door and one of the bullets grazed me and then I think that was when I became worried about the situation and said we could not escape this," Shaw said during his interview with GMA , "I kind of like a fish in a kind of barrel and I'm going to have to try to find some kind of fault or a point in time where I can make this work for me."

Shaw found that point in time during the Waffle House firing when Reinking stopped to reload his weapon. During the pause in the shot, Shaw ran to Reinking and began to remove the gun. "The gun was hot and naked, but none of that mattered," Shaw told CNN, "I was just trying to take the gun away from him." Shaw suffered a burn in the hand of the gun barrel, in addition to the bullet. They graze on your elbow. Eventually he was able to get the gun out of Reinking's hands and throw it on the bar. "Then he took me and me outside, outside the restaurant and then I was just trying to get away from him and, you know, get to freedom," Shaw told GMA.

Although Shaw has been hailed as the hero of the Waffle House shooting, he has said he does not feel like one. After the shooting, Shaw spoke with reporters, where he said: "I want people to know that I did it completely for a selfish act". He continued saying: "I was doing it just to save myself." Doing that … I saved other people, but I do not want people to think that I was Terminator or Superman or someone like that. I thought if I was going to die, I would have to work to get it. "While Shaw was able to save himself and several others, four people were killed: Taurean C. Sanderlin, 29, Joe R. Perez, 20, Akilah DaSilva, 23, and De & # 39; Ebony Groves, 21.

Shaw attended church with his father after the shooting, saying he prayed for the victims during that time.He talked about the victims during an emotional interview with WSMV, Affiliated to Nashville NBC, saying in tears "There are four families that are suffering right now. So much life was lost for no reason. I feel that I could be very selfish of me if I did not point it out. And I apologize. "Since then, Shaw has created a GoFundMe page for the families of the four victims.As of Wednesday, April 25, the page has raised $ 142,512.Shaw also visited two of the survivors in the hospital. He told NBC: "I hope we can bring violence in all facets, not just to armed violence, but to all facets of violence."

Reinking fled the scene of the Waffle House shooting, which He was arrested by police in a wooded area near his apartment after being discovered and informed by a construction worker, Reinking was arrested and charged with four counts of criminal homicide. Police issued another five arrest warrants against Reinking: one charge of illegal possession in the commission of a felony and four counts of attempted murder, while originally being hired with a $ 2 million bonus It was later revoked by a judge in Tennessee, and the bond hearing scheduled for Wednesday was postponed until May 7. Although the reason for the attack has not yet been determined, Reinking has had a history of arrests and erratic behavior. He was arrested in 2017 for trespassing near the White House, claiming he wanted to arrange a meeting with the president. After this event, the FBI seized all of Reinking's weapons, including the one used in the Waffle House shooting. However, they were returned to Reinking's father, Jeffrey, who is believed to have returned them to his son.

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