Survivor:Fiji contestant Michelle Yi was stabbed and beaten outside a pilates studio early Thursday morning in Santa Monica, California, PEOPLE reports. The suspect had already attacked people that morning.
Police told E!News that they received a call around 6 a.m. Thursday morning. The caller said a woman was using poles to hit residents’ cars. They saw her use the pole to strike a man.
Yi had entered her pilates studio shortly before 6 a.m. She was greeting students arriving to her class when she noticed an agitated woman outside the studio, PEOPLE reports.
“She was yelling all sorts of things like, ‘You stole my identity’ and, ‘You’re a prostitute,'” Yi, 37, told PEOPLE. “Santa Monica has a homeless problem, and I’ve dealt with this type of thing before. So I told her, ‘Ma’am, you can’t be here. You need to leave.'”
The woman did not leave, instead, she lunged at Yi with a knife in one hand and a metal baton in the other. The woman stabbed Yi in the left bicep and hit her on the head with a baton.
Yi was taken to the hospital. She received stitches on her face. Her hand was not broken or fractured.
The police who arrived on the scene took the suspect into custody. Lieutenant Rudy Flores, a spokesman for the Santa Monica Police Department, says they believe the woman was “mentally unstable” and potentially “off her medication.”
Yi is not sure why the woman attacked her but she did note to PEOPLE that the attacker was a white woman who attacked three people of color. The survivor contestant is still recovering physically and emotionally from the attack.
“Physically, I’m on the mend,” she told PEOPLE. “Emotionally, it’s harder, but I should be ok.”
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