RIVERSIDE (CNS) – A 30-year-old man accused of attacking a Corona fitness club patron with a hatchet and knife, injuring the victim until he was able to overpower the defendant, pleaded not guilty Friday to attempted murder and other charges.
Ronald Vikash Chand of Santa Ana was arrested Tuesday inside the Planet Fitness at 3685 Grand Oaks, near Cajalco Road.
Along with attempted murder, Chand is charged with assault with a deadly weapon resulting in great bodily injury and vandalism.
He was arraigned before Riverside County Superior Court Judge Sean Crandell, who scheduled a mental health hearing at the Riverside Hall of Justice on March 27, when he’s expected to appoint one or more psychiatrists to examine the defendant.
Chand is being held on $1 million bail at the Robert Presley Jail in Riverside.
According to the Corona Police Department, a 41-year-old Riverside man, whose name was not released, was in the fitness club parking lot when Chand confronted him shortly after 9 a.m. Tuesday, wielding a hatchet and knife.
Without provocation, the defendant allegedly struck the victim with the hatchet and stabbed him with the knife, resulting in “stab wounds to the upper body,” prompting the man to retreat into the Planet Fitness, Sgt. Jason Waldon said.
“While inside, Chand held the victim at knifepoint for a short period before being taken to the ground by the victim and was disarmed and detained with the assistance of bystanders,” Waldon said.
He said gym employees called 911, and patrol officers reached the location minutes later, taking Chand into custody without further incident.
“The victim was transported to a local hospital for treatment of non- life-threatening injuries and has since been released,” the sergeant said.
Chand suffered an unspecified minor injury and was also treated before being booked into jail, according to Waldon.
A possible motive for the attack remains unknown.
Chand has no documented prior felony convictions in Riverside County.
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