Investigation Discovery’s true-crime series ‘Dead Silent’ has an episode that tells the harrowing story of Tammy Crowe, a 20-year-old college student and aspiring teacher, whose life took a violent turn when she had a chance encounter with a dangerous stranger at a grocery store. Tammy Crowe survived a terrible ordeal in 1987 – she was raped, brutalized, and almost killed at the hands of one David James Eatherly. The only reason Tammy lived was because David believed her to be dead and fled the crime scene. Let’s check out the details of the case.
Who is David James Eatherly?
David James Eatherly, born in 1962, is a Kentucky native. His father is a retired Special Forces officer living in Bowling Green, Kentucky. David himself was living and working in Riverdale, Georgia, when he came upon Tammy in an isolated grocery store parking lot on the evening of March 28, 1987.
David ambushed Tammy and held her at knifepoint as he carjacked her and drove her to a secluded wooded area next to a creek. There, David brutally raped and sodomized Tammy and attempted to kill her by slitting her throat when he caught her trying to escape. The knife he was using was a steak knife and the blade was blunt so he failed to slit her throat, fortunately. David then stabbed her 15 times in the torso, but she miraculously still kept breathing. Frustrated, David pulled out his belt and strangled Tammy with it. When she went still, he believed that she had died and he fled the scene, taking Tammy’s car and money along.
But Tammy had somehow survived the horrific ordeal and, despite her grave injuries, managed to crawl up the hill to call for help. She was airlifted to an Atlanta medical facility and had to undergo emergency surgery in order to live. Tammy soon found herself on the mend and was able to give the investigating officers a detailed description of her attacker. The police put out his description locally and a human resource manager of a business situated close to the creek responded and informed the police that the description matched one of their employees. But David had long fled the town by then. He was laying low at his family’s home in Bowling Green, Kentucky, which is where the police arrested him, three weeks after he committed the heinous crime.
Where is David James Eatherly Today?
David James Eatherly knew that he couldn’t escape punishment when he got arrested in 1987. He brought down immense shame and disgrace upon his otherwise respectable family. During his trial, David confessed to his crimes and pleaded guilty to rape, battery, assault, and attempted murder of Tammy Crowe. He also had some outstanding warrants (for some other crimes) in Kentucky. David got served with two life sentences and an additional 20 years in prison for his horrendous crimes. He was incarcerated from October 1987 till August 2016. Since his release from prison, he has moved back to his hometown of Bowling Green in Kentucky and lives with his family.
Read More: Where is Tammy Crowe Now?