Former Homestead student accused in “horrifying” attack against Muslim woman

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (WANE)  A 19-year-old man has been arrested in what witnesses described as a racially motivated attack on a Muslim woman.

Triceten Bickford is a former Homestead High School student. All of his social media accounts have been taken down since he was arrested for the attack happened Saturday near Indiana University’s campus.

“If I didn’t grab his hands he could have killed me,” the victim said.

The victim said she was sitting outside of a cafe with her 9-year-old daughter when Bickford, whose blood alcohol level was reportedly nearly two-and-a-half times the legal limit, walked up to them.

“He started to yell, ‘white power’. A couple of times he yelled like, ‘white power’,” the victim said.

Then he attacked her trying to take the scarf off her head.

“I found him at my neck, like pushing me down, squeezing my neck and putting my head to the table,” the victim said.

The woman’s husband and another man held Bickford down until police got to the scene, reportedly spitting on them. According to the police report, Bickford tried kicking out the windows in the squad car and also a bit an officer in the calf. The police report indicated Bickford had a blood-alcohol content of .19.

The woman was not injured during the attack.

“I hope one day he will learn what he did was wrong and he can seek forgiveness,” the victim said.

The FBI is now investigating to see if federal laws were broken, which could lead to a civil rights case. Bickford has been charged with battery, intimidation, public intoxication, strangulation, minor consumption and battery on police officer

Indiana University spokesman Mark Land said Bickford is listed as a student at the Bloomington campus in an online directory.

IU posted a statement on its Facebook page Monday.

Indiana University is aware of the horrifying incident involving one of our students and a member of the Bloomington Muslim community over the weekend. This type of abhorrent behavior is not representative of our students, nor of the culture of inclusion and tolerance so many people at the university and in the Bloomington community have worked so hard to foster. The university is closely monitoring the Bloomington Police investigation into this matter, and IU Bloomington Provost Lauren Robel has instructed the Dean of Students office to conduct its own investigation into the incident.


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