For $35, Eugene Howard and Chris Waylon Thomas will spend the rest of their natural days in prison. There is no chance of early release. There is no chance for parole.
There shouldn’t be.
What they did to Ralph Davis, a man of the cloth and a man of God, is beyond unspeakable and stretches the imagination of how cruel and depraved man can become. Ralph Davis never did anything to either Howard or Thomas to provoke the kind of brutal, savage and senseless attack those two inflicted upon Pastor Davis.
Howard and Thomas each received two life sentences and another 120 years on top of that for their attack upon Pastor Davis. Davis is convinced that Howard and Thomas meant to kill him on their return to the radio station, where Davis was doing his program and where they had tortured him and tied him up.
Davis managed to wriggle free, and that likely saved his life.
The punishment for Howard and Thomas probably won’t deter anyone else from committing a crime, even one as heinous as the act they perpetrated. Their punishment, though, does fit the crime. For what they did, for no apparent reason and with no regard for Pastor Davis’ life, they will spend the rest of theirs with a chance to realize that their crime did not pay.
The law enforcement agencies worked quickly and effectively to find Howard and Thomas and the justice system worked to bring both young men to speedy and fair trials.
The only redeeming effect from this whole thing may be that Pastor Ralph Davis doesn’t hate Howard and Thomas for what they did to him. It speaks to the kind of man Pastor Davis was before the incident and the kind of man he remains after it all.
Maybe at some point Howard and Thomas can serve as an example of what happens when bad choices meet bad actions. Pastor Davis is an example of a good man and a good heart remaining true to his convictions.