Hero who stopped Waffle House shooter explains how he did it

James Shaw Jr is being hailed a hero after wrestling a gun away from a shooter that killed four people at a Waffle House restaurant near Nashville, Tennessee. 

Mr Shaw, 29, physically confronted the gunman, grabbing the gun and throwing it over the restaurant counter, local media The Tennessean reports. 

The gunman, who was naked but for a green jacket, was armed with what was described as an AR-15 assault-type rifle.

He shot and killed two people in the parking lot of the restaurant in Antioch, a section of southeast Nashville, shortly before 3:30am on Sunday (local time).

He then entered the restaurant and opened fire on patrons, police said - killing one and wounding another, who later died.

Mr Shaw suffered non-life-threatening wounds, including an injured elbow, but says he's not a hero.

"It feels selfish... I was just trying to get myself out. I saw the opportunity and pretty much took it," he told The Tennessean.

"I grabbed the gun and kept it down. He had one hand on it. I pulled it away and threw it over the bar."

Mr Shaw says following a tussle with the gunman he pushed him out the door. He didn't follow the shooter, as he feared he could have another gun.

The gunman's vehicle was registered to Travis Reinking, 29, of Morton, Illinois, who police identified as a person of interest in the shooting.

A search was under way for Reinking, who police believe had been living in a nearby apartment. Police said a shirtless  believed to be Reinking was spotted in a nearby forest.

Police cautioned that the gunman is to be considered still armed and extremely dangerous.

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