I Survived Evil is not just the title of the new Investigation Discovery series that Charisma Carpenter will be hosting — it’s also a declaration the actress herself can make.
Back in 1991, years before she traded barbs with Buffy, Carpenter and two friends were swimming at Torrey Pines State Beach in San Diego when they were violently attacked by Henry Hubbard Jr., then a 29-year-old police officer.
During the encounter, Hubbard, brandishing a gun, ordered Carpenter to tie up her male friends. But Carpenter refused, affording her companions opportunity to jump and overpower Hubbard, ultimately leading to his capture and arrest — even as the young men suffered non-fatal bullet wounds along the way.
Carpenter meanwhile held onto the police-issue flashlight Hubbard used, to help seal his conviction for that assault which, when combined with a string of others, earned him a 56-year prison sentence.
Though Carpenter has never openly discussed the harrowing incident, “Now I’m in a place where I could. I have enough distance — and a lot of therapy — between then and what happened and now,” she tells TVLine. “It’s not as fresh. It’s not as painful.”
Investigation Discovery’s I Survived Evil, which starts production later this summer with an eye on a 2013 bow, will chronicle similar true stories of ordinary people who successfully warded off attackers. That Carpenter, given her own such scare, was approached to host the series was pure coincidence. “I don’t think [the producers] knew,” she ventures. “And when I told them, they were like, ‘This makes perfect sense. We want you to be even more a part of the process.’”
Read the rest of the interview here.