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Judge: Dana Ericson Not Competent To Stand Trial
Updated February 3, 2017 7:48 AM | Filed under: Crime
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(NASHVILLE) - A Nashville man charged with attacking a foreign exchange student with a hatchet in downtown Nashville has been found mentally incompetent to stand trial.

On January 20, Judge Judith Stewart ruled for a second time that 60-year-old Dana Ericson was not competent to assist in preparation of his defense in order to stand trial. Two doctors, Dr. George Parker and Dr. Don Oliver, evaluated Ericson.

The judge stated that Ericson doesn't understand the charges against him and can't assist his lawyer in his own defense.

Ericson has been in the Brown County Jail since the attack. According to court records, Judge Stewart vacated the final pretrial conference and jury trial scheduled for February 15. She ordered that for the next 90 days, Ericson will be committed to the Indiana Division of Mental Health and Addiction. The trial will be rescheduled following competency restoration.

Ericson is charged with attempted murder, aggravated battery and battery causing serious injury after he attacked 18-year-old Yue Zhang of China twice in the back with a hatchet on February 18, 2016.

He has pleaded not guilty to the crime.

Ericson told police he was trying to bring about an "ethnic cleansing" and stated that he hated Asians and intended to kill the teen.

Zhang was struck while taking photos for a high school class near Trolly's BBQ in downtown Nashville. Police say Ericson ran across Van Buren Street near the courthouse and hit her in the back two times with a hatchet. Zhang's thick coat prevented her injury from being fatal.

She was treated at a Columbus hospital for a deep, 2-inch deep laceration that measured about an inch wide near her spine and was released.

If Ericson is convicted of attempted murder, the maximum sentence is 40 years.

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