A Florida man accused of a ramming a hatchet into the head of a woman he was staying with just before Thanksgiving was tracked down 150 miles away from the scene and charged with attempted murder.
The woman’s family prepared to take her off life support Saturday. It was not immediately clear if the charges could be increased.
Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office said deputies found the 56-year-old woman with “a hatchet protruding from her head” when they responded to a call about an attempted murder at the Silver Lake Mobile Home Park in St. Petersburg just after 10:30 a.m. Tuesday.
The woman, identified by WFLA Tampa as Lisa Rogers Eaton, was miraculously alive, and taken to a nearby hospital, where she was treated for life-threatening injuries.
The report cited the sheriff’s office as saying Eaton was in stable condition in the hospital, but her younger sister told the station they were preparing to take her off a respirator on Saturday.
Donna Voye said family and friends would gather to be with Eaton to pray and say their goodbyes to the woman she said would “help anybody.”
“She’ll give you anything you want,” Voye said, including allowing Michael Doughtery, 40, to stay with her and her husband after he lost his job.
“We don’t understand it,” Voye said. “We can’t understand it because she wouldn’t hurt anybody.”
“No family should ever get a call like we got telling us that or them that their family member is brutally attacked as our little sister was,” Voye said.
Doughtery fled the scene before law enforcement arrived. Detectives later tracked him down near Gainesville, about 150 miles north of St. Petersburg.
Just before 3 a.m. Thanksgiving morning, an Alachua County deputy pulled Doughterty over and took him into custody, where he was charged with one count of second-degree attempted murder.
Doughtery was being being held at Alachua County jail and will be transferred to Pinellas County Jail.