Family: Gym Took Advantage Of Man With Disability

Man Says He Was Driven To Gym, Signed Up Contract

The brothers of an Indianapolis man claim a local gym took advantage of their developmentally disabled sibling, signing him up for a contract that he couldn't understand.

Mark Hannon is 49, but functions at a much younger age, the family told 6News' Rafael Sanchez.

That's why they were upset when Hannon told them that two men representing Bally's Total Fitness came to his door last week, offering to sign him up for a gym membership.

Hannon told his brothers that the men drove him to the Pike Plaza gym, where he signed a contract and agreed to have $29.99 withdrawn from his bank account every month. He also paid $69.98 to cover the first and last month of membership, in addition to a services fee, he said.

Hannon's apartment complex has signs posted prohibiting soliciting. His brothers called the gym's actions predatory.

"They knew he was developmentally challenged and it did not bother them one bit," said Joe Hannon. "That's our brother. We care for him. We love him. We don't want anything to happen to him."

The brothers told Sanchez that they went to the gym Monday hoping to resolve the issue, but that their requests were rejected by the management at the facility.

When Sanchez went to the gym on Tuesday, a man who refused to identify himself said the matter than been taken care of, but would not offer any further explanation before showing the crew out of the building.

Hannon's brothers said they are worried this isn't the first or last time the gym has taken advantage of someone in a similar situation.

"I'm wondering how more people are they going to do it to? After meeting two young gentlemen yesterday, they don't feel they've done anything wrong," said Pat Hannon. "They feel it's their right to get America fit."

6News called and faxed Bally's corporate headquarters, along with a media relations representative, but those calls had not been returned Tuesday evening.