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Mount Holyoke College art professor charged with attempted murder

An art professor from Massachusetts’ Mount Holyoke College is under arrest for the late-December attempted murder of a peer who allegedly had spurned her affections.

According to the Daily Hampshire Gazette, Rie Hachiyanagi, chair of the college’s art studio, was arraigned Friday on charges of “armed assault with attempt to murder a person over the age of 60, three counts of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, mayhem, and armed assault in a dwelling.”

The unidentified female victim told law enforcement that when she asked Hachiyanagi why she was attacking her, the professor responded because “she loved her for many years and she should have known.”

The victim said she “played along” with Hachiyanagi in order to thwart the attack, telling her she had “reciprocating feelings.”

Somewhat ironically, some of Hachiyanagi’s art projects deal with the “absurd conflicts among urges, necessities, and mortality,” according to her college profile page.

From the story:

A police report by State Trooper Geraldine L. Bresnahan states that Crime Scene Services’ attending physician Dr. Michael Zhou “offered a preliminary opinion that (the victim) was presented with multiple broken bones in (her) nose and eye area, and numerous lacerations and puncture wounds on (her) head and face.” Zhou did not consider the injuries life-threatening. …

College spokesperson Christian Feuerstein confirmed in a statement to the Gazette that the incident occurred between two faculty members. Hachiyanagi, Feuerstein said, “has been placed on administrative leave from the college and is not permitted on our campus pending further review of the incident. We will cooperate fully with law enforcement agencies in support of their ongoing investigations.” …

Officers first arrived at around 12:44 a.m. on Dec. 24, according to Bresnahan’s report. First responders were told Hachiyanagi called 911 to report locating her friend, the reported victim, at the victim’s residence “in a pool of blood” and “barely breathing, semi-conscious and with a head injury.” She also reported signs of a struggle.

Hachiyanagi told police she did not remember anything after 6pm of the evening in question, noting she suffers from memory loss due to past concussions. Her college page appears to back up this claim.

Read the article.

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