State Police investigate after Richland resident assaulted in broad daylight

RICHLAND, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - Michigan State Police are now heading an assault investigation in the village of Richland, not the Richland Police Department.

State Police met the victim at Borgess Hospital on Monday afternoon, after the victim claims he was attacked in his yard.

They say they are looking for any help in solving the case.

"Definitely strange; definitely a suspicious situation, that's for sure," said State Police Lieutenant Dale Hinz.

According to reports, a man was confronted in his backyard in the relatively safe village of Richland in broad daylight by a man wearing a camouflage hunting mask, who wasn't looking to rob him.

"He was initially pushed into a large birdfeeder, and then pushed into a fence, which did some damage to his face," Lt. Hinz said.

Newschannel 3 has learned that State Police say the victim wanted an independent agency to handle the investigation, and not Richland officers.

The victim's wife, Richland Village Clerk Wanda Holewa was vocal in a Newschannel 3 investigation which raised concerns about possible fraudulent activities in the village.

"There's no secret the victim and his wife have been outspoken at several different meetings at the Village of Richland, so for this to be retaliation or retribution for that is an entirely possible situation; but like I said, we're not saying that's the situation at that point," Lt. Hinz said.

Newschannel 3 reached out to both the victim and the Village Clerk on Wednesday, but both said they didn't wish to speak on camera.

The suspect is described as 6 feet tall, possibly wearing a dark green shirt and dark pants.

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