(03/04/06 -- CHAPEL HILL) - Authorities charged a recent University of North Carolina graduate with nine counts of attempted first-degree murder on Saturday, a day after police said he drove a sport utility vehicle through a popular campus gathering spot. Mohammed Reza Taheri-azar, 22, is also charged with nine counts of assault with a deadly weapon with intent to cause bodily injury. Derek Poarch, chief of the university's police department, confirmed Saturday that Taheri-azar, a native of Iran, told investigators he wanted to "avenge the deaths or murders of Muslims around the world." Poarch would not provide any other details of Taheri-azar's motive. No one was seriously hurt in the incident just before noon Friday at The Pit, a sunken, brick-paved area surrounded by two libraries, a dining hall and the student union near the center of campus. Five students and a visiting scholar were treated for minor injuries and released from UNC Hospitals, the university said in a statement. Three other people declined treatment at the scene, police said. Taheri-azar is being held on a $5.5 million bond at the state's Central Prison in nearby Raleigh. He was scheduled to make a first appearance in Orange County district court on Monday. Poarch would not say if Taheri-azar had an attorney. Poarch said Taheri-azar, who called police to surrender and then awaited officers on a street two miles from campus, is cooperating with investigators. The FBI has also interviewed Taheri-azar, but Poarch said he did not know if federal charges would be forthcoming. Taheri-azar told police Friday they would find things inside his apartment in nearby Carrboro that would shed light on his motives, Poarch said. That led authorities to ask the State Bureau of Investigation to search the apartment with a bomb squad, but Poarch said they didn't find anything dangerous. Poarch declined to offer any additional details about what police found inside the apartment, but said Taheri-azar's roommates have been very cooperative and are not suspects in the case. "There is no indication whatsoever that he acted in any way other than alone," Poarch said. Taheri-azar graduated from North Carolina in December after studying psychology and philosophy.