GARDNER – WBZ first spoke to the man who was randomly attacked at the Planet Fitness gym in Gardner Wednesday morning.
Daniel Harris was released from the hospital and showed WBZ where he was stabbed on his chest and back by a man he didn’t even know. He’s thankful it wasn’t worse but wants to warn others to be vigilant wherever they go.
“It’s just shocking,” said Daniel Harris. “I never thought anything like that would happen at Planet Fitness. I really didn’t. That’s the last place I would ever expect to get attacked.”
The 43-year-old was washing his hands in the gym locker room, when suddenly someone came up behind him.
Daniel thought he was punched in the back and chest, but when he went to the front desk, he realized it was worse.
“I never said anything to the guy, he never said anything to me, just jumped me and ran off,” said Harris. “They asked me to lift up my shirt and there was blood everywhere and they were stab wounds.”
He was rushed to UMass Memorial Medical Center in Worcester on a medical helicopter. He’s expected to be OK.
The attacker ran away, but less than an hour later, police arrested 28-year-old Lennox Nunez with the help of witness descriptions and his swiped membership card.
Nunez’ attorneys say his client is homeless and goes to the Planet Fitness to shower.
As gymgoers heard about the attack, they said they would be more vigilant themselves.
“I’ll just probably just keep more of a lookout now to make sure like if I see anybody strange or out of place, I might not work out in that area surrounding them,” said member Lisa Szostakowski.
As for the suspect, Harris had this message for him: “I hope you pay for what you did because innocent people don’t deserve to get jumped and attacked out of nowhere–I did nothing to him–I did nothing to you buddy,” said Harris.
Nunez was arraigned Wednesday in Gardner District Court on a charge of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon.
Nunez is being held on $50,000 bail and is due back in court in August.
Becky Zirlen, senior director of communications for Planet Fitness, released a statement after the stabbing.
“At Planet Fitness, the safety and security of our members and staff is always our top priority,” Zirlen said. “We take these types of incidents extremely seriously, and the local Planet Fitness franchise owner is actively working with authorities in their investigation. We refer you to the local police for additional questions.”
Harris says he will be going back to the doctor for a follow up appointment in a few days.