Newly released surveillance video captures the harrowing moment a good Samaritan wrestles an assault rifle away from a crazed gunman after he allegedly killed four people at a Tennessee Waffle House.
The footage, released Monday at the murder trial of accused shooter Travis Reinking, shows “Waffle House Hero” James Shaw lunging at the killer’s AR-15 rifle and getting into a life-and-death scuffle, Law & Crime reported.
“There was a voice that told me to do it, do it now,” Shaw testified about his heart-pounding heroics. “I wanted to keep an eye on him to find my moment and find that opportunity. I ran through the door as fast as I could. I ran through the door thinking it was going to be me or him or death.”
He said he kept telling himself, “‘You’re going to have to grab the barrel, James. You’re going to have to push it down.’
“As he goes for my left hand, I take my left hand off him and pulling and pulling and I get the gun and I throw it,” he said. “It seemed like the gun was in the air for days and it finally get over the bar. I manhandled him out of my way.”
When police arrived, officers said an emotional Shaw was inside the restaurant, repeatedly saying, “I fought him, I fought him,” WTVF-TV reported.
Reinking, 32, fled — without his assault rifle — but was arrested following a two-day manhunt and now faces first-degree murder charges in the April 22, 2018, shooting at the Antioch eatery, according to WTVF.
Police said he stormed into the Waffle House wearing nothing but a green jacket and opened fire, killing four — DeEbony Groves, Akilah Dasilva, Joe Perez and Taurean Sanderlin — and wounding several others, police said.
Reinking’s lawyers said their client, who was treated for schizophrenia at a mental health facility after his arrest, was insane during the mass shooting.
Defense lawyer Luke Evans said Reinking believed that God told him to kill.
On the witness stand Monday, Shaw said he recognized the killer’s glare.