James Shaw: Tennessee Waffle House Shooting Good Samaritan Who Disarmed Shooter Identified

"I saw the opportunity and pretty much took it.”

the tennessee waffle house good samaritan has been identified as james shaw
David Goldman / AP Images

"I saw the opportunity and pretty much took it.”

The Good Samaritan who disarmed the alleged shooter in the Tennessee Waffle House shooting, possibly saving several lives in the process, has been identified as 29-year-old James Shaw, The Tennesseean is reporting.

Shaw tells the Nashville newspaper that he and some friends had been at a fraternity party early Sunday morning when, after deciding it was too crowded, they went to Waffle House to get something to eat. Not long afterwards, he says, all hell broke loose.

That was when, as previously reported by the Inquisitr, suspect Travis Reinking, 29, of Illinois, allegedly opened fire, first killing two people outside the restaurant and then spraying bullets inside. As recently as 2:57 p.m. Eastern, the death toll from that incident is being reported at four, via CNN, with four others injured.

It could have been a lot worse, had it not been for Shaw.

According to Metropolitan Nashville Police Department spokesperson Don Aaron, Shaw “watched the gunman’s moves” and took action when the opportunity presented itself. That opportunity came when the alleged shooter was reloading; Shaw wrestled with the gunman and was able to gain control of his weapon, tossing it out of his reach. The gunman then fled on foot.

Shaw suffered minor injuries in the scuffle; he was taken to an area hospital where he was treated and released.

Shaw is a hero, says Aaron.

“He is the hero here, and no doubt he saved many lives by wrestling the gun away and then tossing it over the counter and prompting the (gun)man to leave.”

It’s a sentiment echoed by witness Chuck Cordero, who was outside the restaurant but still saw everything.

“He was a hero… had that guy had a chance to reload his weapon, there was plenty more people in that restaurant.”

Shaw, for his part, isn’t keen on being called a hero. He tells the Tennesseean that he was just doing what he felt he had to do.

“While I was in hospital, a girl that was there said you saved my life. I didn’t do it to be hero.”

Meanwhile, police are conducting an intensive manhunt for the suspect, who has not been captured as of this writing. Police have warned people in the area to lock their doors and to be on the lookout for the suspect, who was last seen wearing black pants.

This is a developing story. More information about the Tennessee Waffle House shooting will be provided as it becomes available.