ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (WFLA) — Family members are preparing to say their final goodbyes to Lisa Rogers Eaton after detectives say a man attacked her with a hatchet Tuesday morning.
According to the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office, deputies found 56-year-old Eaton with a hatchet “protruding from her head” at the Silver Lake Mobile Home Park.
Detectives said the suspect — later identified as 40-year-old Michael Dougherty — left the area before deputies arrived. His vehicle was spotted near Gainesville later that day.
The sheriff’s office said Alachua County deputies arrested Dougherty during a traffic stop just before 3 a.m. on Thursday. He was booked into the Alachua County Jail on a warrant for attempted second-degree murder and is awaiting extradition to Pinellas County.
Eaton’s family is heartbroken.
Donna Voye said if you needed anything, her baby sister Eaton would give it to you. She described her sister as caring and someone who thinks the best of everyone.
“She’ll help anybody,” Voye said. “She’ll give you anything you want.”
That is what Voye said Eaton was doing for Dougherty. She said Eaton was letting him 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 is our little sister was,” Voye said.
Voye recalled the last time she spoke with her sister. She was talking about her son, with who Eaton was close.
“She used to play him the fireman’s song when I was up visiting with her, I talked to her about how he missed her playing the fireman’s song and I played it for him before I left New York to come here,” Eaton said. “He gave me a hug to give Aunt Lisa for the fireman’s song.”
The family has many questions, the biggest one being why.
“As good as a person she has done a whole life for her life at 56 years old, be taken away by someone that’s so mean,” Voye said. “Why? Why? It just doesn’t make any sense.”
The sheriff’s office said Eaton was in stable condition in the hospital but is being monitored closely due to the seriousness of the injury.
Voye said family and friends will get together at the hospital to be with Eaton on Saturday morning, say a prayer and have a doctor turn off her respirator.
The family is also raising money for a funeral. You can email Ashleyhickey198982@yahoo.com or call 850-838-7129 to help.
The Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office is still investigating the incident.