SEATTLE - The hotel bellman who risked his life to capture an armed robbery suspect in downtown Seattle spoke publicly for the first time on Wednesday, revealing new details about the takedown caught on camera.
Roberto Sandoval was shot in the arm. He said he's still in pain, five days after he chased down and tackled an armed man fleeing a jewelry store heist.
Sandoval said he knows he could have been killed, but that he believes God spared him.
Sandoval said he was acting on instinct when he chased after the man with a gun. He caught up with him outside Hotel Max at 7th Avenue and Stewart Street.
Question: "Did you think he was going to kill you?"
Answer: "Oh, yeah. Definitely, yeah."
Sandoval said that when he began chasing Edmond Maynor last Friday morning, he didn't know Maynor was wanted for robbing Express Jewelers in the Westlake Center. But he did know Maynor was armed.
"When I'm behind the guy, I'm pushing, like that, hey, stop. And I go again, and pushing so hard the guy, the guy fell down, (took) the gun out (of) his pocket and he (shot) me three times," Sandoval said.
At first, he didn't know where he was hit.
"I think it's my stomach."
Then, he discovered a bullet had struck him in the arm.
Maynor's gun jammed and he started hitting Sandoval.
Maynor then hit him with the gun.
"Yeah, he hit me three times … on the ear."
Still Sandoval kept trying to wrestle the gun away.
"I'm angry. I tried to hold the guy."
He started looking around for help.
"I don't have too much energy."
But it was only when he got the gun -- and tossed it away -- that a group of men jumped in. Still, he is grateful.
"I say, 'Thank you' for these guys for helping."
But he said he is no hero. He said he did it because he wanted to give back.
"I love this country."
Sandoval's employer, the Mayflower Park Hotel, is collecting money for him because as his family's main support, he will need financial help while he is recovering and not able to work. Sandoval's brother said donors can give money at the hotel.
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