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FBI investigating Brown Co. hatchet attack

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Posted at 9:00 PM, Feb 24, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-24 21:00:10-05

INDIANAPOLIS -- The FBI has opened a civil rights investigation into a hatchet attack on a Chinese exchange student in Brown County last week. 

PREVIOUS | Suspect called hatchet attack on Brown Co. student 'ethnic cleansing'

Yue Zhang says she was taking pictures for a school project in downtown Nashville when she heard a man yelling her.

According to the probable cause affidavit, she heard the man say something like, "I am going to kill you," as he followed her. Then she felt something hit her back.

Zhang was taken to Columbus Regional Hospital with serious, but non life-threatening injuries. 

Police say they found a hatchet on the suspect, 59-year-old Dana Ericson of Brown County.

According to the probable cause affidavit, Ericson told police he struck Zhang and said, "Is it a crime to strike evil?"

The document says that Ericson said he was attempting to perpetuate 'ethnic cleansing' and targeted her because she was Asian.

The probable cause affidavit goes on to say that Ericson admitted he is a white supremacist who said he, "hates these people."

Ericson entered a not guilty plea on February 22 to charges of attempted murder, aggravated battery and battery.

Bond was set at $500,000 and he's been ordered to have no contact with the student and host family.

Ericson's next court date is for a competency hearing on April 11. 

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