Eli Ridder | Report

A gunman opened fire at a Tennessee Waffle House in the United States earlu on Sunday, killing four and injuring an additional four others, according to authorities.

The suspect, later identified as Travis Reinking, unloaded an AR-style rifle around 3: 25 a.m. after entering the restaurant largely nude and fatally shot three at the scene, before fleeing after a customer disarmed the gunman while his rifle was jammed.

Mr. Reinking, 29, was identified by the Metro Nashville Police Department as a Morton native from Illinois.

Officials told local media that Reinking had been spotted on Murfreesboro Rd. S and in a wooded area in Antioch in an interview with local media, apparently now dressed with black pants and no shirt.

Police say the suspect is still at-large and could be carrying dual firearms as two weapons are missing from his apartment.

Reinking was previously arrested for being in a restricted area near the White House in July 2017, authorities said later on Sunday.

He has been previously charged with several crimes.

Waffle House hero

The man who rushed the shooter while Reinking was reloading has been hailed a hero by Nashville police.

James Shaw Jr. ran for the washrooms when he hear the gunshots, but did not lose sight of the gunman as he waited for his chance.

When Reinking halted his onslaught to reload his rifle, Mr. Shaw took the chance to slam the gunman and take his weapon in heroic act police say saved countless lives at the Waffle House.

“He saw the gunman looking at his rifle. At that point, the shots had stopped,” Metro Nashville police spokesman Don Aaron told reporters.

“So he decided to rush the gunman, actually wrestled that assault rifle away, tossed it over the counter. At that point, the gunman then fled.”

Shaw, 29, suffered minor injuries in the scrap, including cuts and an injured elbow.

James Shaw Jr..jpg
James Shaw, via CNN. 

“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,” the police spokesman said.

As he ran away, “I looked back and there was a gentleman wrestling with the gunman,” Cordero told CNN affiliate WSMV.

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

More details to follow. Image of the Waffle House from George Walker/The Tennessean. 

Written by Eli Ridder

Eli Ridder is a freelance journalist. He founded The Avro Post in October 2017. He writes for Breaking911 and Guelph Politico, among others. Feel free to connect at ELIRIDDER@ICLOUD.COM or at ELIRIDDER.CA

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