Brooklyn, NY – Bret “The Hitman” Hart was attacked from behind by a crazed spectator as he was giving a speech at the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) Hall of Fame event on Saturday night (video below).
“I just felt like it was the right moment,” the suspect later told police, according to the New York Post.
The assault occurred inside the packed Barclays Center, while 61-year-old Hart was delivering his Hall of Fame induction speech from behind a podium inside the ring, WCBS reported.
Cell phone footage showed the suspect, later identified as 26-year-old Zachary Madsen, as he slipped past a barricade, shoved a security guard aside, and scrambled into the ring, according to the New York Post.
He then grabbed the wrestling legend from behind and slammed him to the ground, the video showed.
A swarm of people swooped in to tackle and subdue Madsen, and some delivered hefty blows to accomplish the task.
“Are you f--king kidding me?” one fan said of the brazen assault. “Beat his -ss!”
Among those who rushed to Hart’s aid were current WWE stars Curtis Axel, Tyson Kidd, Xavier Woods, and Shane McMahon, WCBS reported.
Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) fighter Travis Browne also jumped into the brawl.
Hart was freed from the melee and led away, as about 10 others worked to gain control of Madsen, the video showed.
The mob ultimately yanked the suspect out of the ring, and carried him out of the arena.
Hart and a security guard both suffered minor injuries during the attack, WCBS reported.
Madsen was arraigned in Brooklyn criminal court on two counts each of trespassing and assault on Sunday, according to WCBS.
His attorney told the court that Madsen was “agreeable and cooperative” during the investigation, and that he didn’t have money to post his own bail, according to the New York Post.
But the judge denied his request to be released without bail, and set his bond at $1,500.
The court also issued an order of protection, prohibiting Madsen from having any contact with Hart or WWE security guard Thaddeus Jones.
In September, Madsen was arrested for allegedly stalking mixed-martial artist Haris Talundzic, according to police records from Lincoln, Nebraska.
You can watch cell phone footage of the brazen attack in the video below: