MANCHESTER, N.H. (WHDH) – New Hampshire police are searching for a suspect after a man was found beaten and covered in blood at a Manchester pizza shop Thursday afternoon.

Emergency crews responded at around 1:15 p.m. to the Mallard Pond Plaza on Second Street and found a man inside Pizza Express suffering from head and facial injuries. Police said the victim was attacked inside First Nutrition and possibly robbed before making his way to Pizza Express.

A witness who helped the terrified victim thought he was playing a joke as he rushed into the shop in search of help.

“He just came in the door covered in blood. I thought it was actually ketchup,” said Sarah Leclair, who said the incident was scary. “He comes in every day. I really didn’t think he was hurt. He said, ‘I got robbed at gunpoint.’”

The man was taken to an area hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. No shots were fired during the attack, police said.

The suspect fled the scene before police could arrive. He is described as a white man who stands 5 feet 7 inches tall, with a medium build. He was seen wearing a dark jacket, a dark hat and dark pants.

The owner of Pizza Express said the victim tried to fight off the attacker, but that he was overpowered and pistol-whipped.

“He tried to box the guy,” said Peter Houliaris. “He had a gun. He hit him with a gun.”

Police believe the suspect exited First Nutrition through a back door and took off in a dark-colored pickup truck that was seen leaving the area.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Manchester Police Department.

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