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LAS CRUCES POLICE DEPARTMENT

Gym Shooting Suspect Charged with Attempted Murder

Posted

The man suspected in Tuesday morning’s shooting that injured a woman at Planet Fitness has been arrested and charged with a second-degree felony.
 
Jose Daniel Chavez, 28, of the 500 block of Forest Road in Mesilla Park and a former member of Planet Fitness, is charged with one count of attempted murder.
 
About 8 a.m. Tuesday, Aug. 3, police were dispatched to Planet Fitness, 1300 El Paseo Rd., where a 29-year-old employee was suffering from at least one gunshot wound. The woman was transported to Mountainview Regional Medical Center with non-life-threatening injuries. The victim has since been released from the hospital.
 
Witnesses gave police a description of the suspect and the direction he left the gym. Officers quickly located and detained Chavez who fit the description of the suspect. Witnesses subsequently positively identified Chavez as the shooter.
 
Investigators learned Chavez was a member of the gym in 2000, but had his membership cancelled in June 2020 due to repeated complaints regarding his gym attire.
 
The victim in Tuesday’s shooting told detectives she was working at the counter when Chavez walked in, threw a boot at her and then fired one round. The round struck the left side of the woman’s abdomen. When Chavez was detained by police, he was not wearing shoes or boots.
 
Witnesses also told investigators that Chavez dropped a handgun on the sidewalk just east of the Planet Fitness building. The firearm was recovered by police and was determined to be a 9mm handgun.
 
Planet Fitness and the parking lot near the gym were temporarily closed while police interviewed witnesses and collected evidence. The gym and parking lot were reopened by 9:30 a.m.
 
Chavez was booked into the Dona Ana County Detention Center where he is initially being held without bond.