A retired NYPD detective was one of the three LA Fitness gym-goers who subdued a gunman in North Babylon last week, according to a report.
Noah Haynes, 18, of Wyandanch, and an unidentified 17-year-old boy were allegedly arguing inside the gym before both were asked to leave the premises.
Police said Haynes returned about a half-hour later and confronted the other teen in the locker room. He allegedly slashed the boy’s neck with a metal object and pointed a handgun at him during the Dec. 21 incident.
Joseph Koch, the retired NYPD detective, told News 12 that thanks to his police training and nine years of experience with the NYPD, he was able to spot the man’s suspicious behavior.
He alerted the manager and shortly after they confronted the 18-year-old, they heard someone yell he had a gun, News 12 reported.
That’s when three gym members risked their safety to hold Haynes down until police arrived at the scene. During the struggle, the gun went off and one shot was fired, but no one was struck by the bullet.
Koch recalled the moment to News 12 when he held the man’s gun to maneuver it away from others in the gym. The gunman told Koch he was going to shoot him, News 12 reported.
“He did fire one shot going toward the vending machines, but luckily I was directing the firearm to a safe location,” Koch told News 12 Long Island.
The 17-year-old was treated for minor injuries at a local hospital.
Haynes was arrested at 7:55 p.m. He is charged with 2nd-degree assault, 1st-degree reckless endangerment, menacing, and 2nd-degree criminal possession of a weapon.
See the full story in our previous report below.
Top: Screenshot of Joseph Koch being interviewed by News 12 Long Island. Courtesy of the News 12 YouTube Channel.