‘Don’t call me a hero’

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A driving school owner has dismissed his heroic actions as ‘simply instinct’ after saving an elderly man from a brutal battering by a wild gunman.

Roy Alves did not hesitate to intervene when, on a quiet Sunday afternoon, a man wielding a handgun and power drill went into Corals bookmakers in Warners End, Hemel Hempstead, and ordered everyone to get on the ground.

Roy, 48, said: “We all thought he was messing about so we all ignored him.

“He went straight up to this old boy and smacked him in the face with the gun. He fell over and he was on top of him and was hitting him.

“I couldn’t just watch it and just pulled him off and said: ‘Oi, what are you doing, get out of here’

“He started threatening me. I said: Nobody wants any trouble, just go home while you can’.”

Roy then followed the gunman, who had also terrified shoppers in Stoneycroft’s Co-op store during his rampage, so that he could point armed officers in the right direction when they arrived on the scene.

But the owner of Roy’al Driving School has brushed off his actions saying it was not brave and possibly even stupid.

“It was just an instinct to help him out,” he said.

“Sometimes I think it could have been stupidity but there was nothing brave about it. I was just helping out an old boy.”

“I was a Londoner and moved up here almost 11 years ago and I love it here. You just don’t expect to see it in Warners End.

“It is one of those things that can happen anywhere.”

More than 25 armed officers swooped on the shopping area, blocking off surrounding roads, and stormed a nearby block of flats where a man was tasered and arrested at around 6pm on Sunday.

l Shane Hogan, 44, of Long Chaulden, Hemel Hempstead, has been charged with possession of a firearm with intent to cause fear of violence.

He appeared before Hatfield Remand Court yesterday.