A professor who taught art and Asian studies at a liberal arts college for women in Massachusetts has been sentenced to 10-to-12 years in prison on Wednesday, Oct. 20, after being found guilty of torturing a colleague of hers for four hours, spurred by her unrequited love for the victim. 

Rie Hachiyanagi, a 50-year-old professor for Mount Holyoke College, pleaded guilty to nine different charges all related to her Dec. 23, 2019 attack on her colleague Lauret Savoy, according to the Daily Beast

Savoy, a teacher of geology and environmental studies, was tortured by Hachiyanagi with a rock, a fire poker, and garden shears for four hours as Hachiyanagi talked about her unreciprocated love for Savoy, taunting her and watching her bleed for hours on end, Boston.com reported. 

“She betrayed my trust, invaded my home, and tried to kill me with premeditated violence,” Savoy said in an impact statement for the court. “The cruelty she wielded with weapons, and expressed in words, was extreme.”

Savoy escaped the situation by pretending to share the feelings that Hachiyanagi had for her, convincing her to call 911 to bring her to the hospital. Savoy suffered from broken bones in the eyes and nose area as well lacerations and puncture wounds in the head and face, People reported.

“Professor Savoy is certainly a victim of a horrific crime, but that’s not what I’m going to remember,” Judge Francis Flannery said about the case. “I’m going to remember that she had the presence of mind and the courage to convince her attacker not to kill her.”

Hachiyanagi’s attorney, Thomas Kokonowski, attempted to push for a shorter sentence of 5-to-7 years due to her lack of criminal history prior to the case, as well as the good reputation and the respect she had garnered from the community. Judge Flannery, however, thought the crime was too horrific to ignore. 

“I have this defendant who tried to torture to death over four hours someone who wasn’t an enemy, but was a friend,” Flannery said. “But I still don’t understand. I still don’t see an adequate explanation for what happened. This is one of the most horrific set of facts I’ve heard.”

Hachiyanagi’s sentence includes an order to stay away from the victim, a mandatory ankle monitor for a year, and extensive mental health counseling regarding the event.

bucerius-law-school-hQ4WT372J9g-unsplash Rie Hachiyanagi has been sentenced to 10-to-12 years in prison for torturing her colleague Lauret Savoy for four hours over her unrequited love for the victim. This is a representational image. PIXABAY