Fun with Ghosts
There was a time when I loved all things paranormal. Debunking ghosts was not my thing. But now, as I step back and look deeper into things, I’m finding that most of it is explainable or straight up phony. Take, for example, the Amityville House.
This is the house where, in 1974, Ronald DeFeo, Jr. shot and killed six members of his family. About a year later, the house was sold to a couple named George and Kathy Lutz. They, along with their three children, moved in stating that the murders didn’t bother them. The Lutz family stated that they had quite the paranormal experience while in the house. Here are 9 of the things that the Lutzes said happened in their house. This is only a small part of the list of things that happened.
- Locks, doors and windows in the house were damaged by an unseen force.
- Green gelatin-like slime that oozed from walls in the hall.
- George waking up around 3:15 every morning to check the boathouse. The significance being that this is the time the DeFeo family was thought to be murdered.
- While tending to the fire, George and Kathy saw the image of a demon with half his head blown out. It was burned into the soot in the back of the fireplace.
- The Lutzes’ 5-year-old daughter, Missy, developed an imaginary friend named “Jodie,” a demonic pig-like creature with glowing red eyes.
- Cloven hoof prints attributed to an enormous pig appeared in the snow outside the house January 1, 1976.
- George would wake up to the sound of the front door slamming. He would race downstairs to find the dog sleeping soundly at the front door. Nobody else heard the sound although it was loud enough to wake the house.
- While in bed, Kathy received red welts on her chest caused by an unseen force and was levitated two feet in the air.
- George saw Kathy transform into an old woman of 90, “the hair wild, a shocking white, the face a mass of wrinkles and ugly lines, and saliva dripping from the toothless mouth.”
The list of things they claimed that happened was extensive. After several blessings and attempts to rid the house of spirits, the Lutz family left the house and had movers send them their possessions.
There was a successful book written about their experience called the Amityville Horror which was turned into a successful movie. And, for many years, I fell for this. I’d never heard about the controversy surrounding the case.
Not so fast
Apparently, there hadn’t been snow when they claimed hoof prints in the snow. The people who bought the house said the locks and doors hadn’t been damaged and looked original the house. Neighbors never reported anything odd happening and the police were never called, even though the book said they were. All subsequent owners of the house have reported nothing but people getting on their nerves by trespassing, trying to see the house.
William Weber, the defense attorney for Ronald DeFeo, Jr., is said to have stated that the book was a hoax. In the September 17, 1979 issue of People magazine, William Weber wrote: “I know this book is a hoax. We created this horror story over many bottles of wine.” Adding to the confusion, while the Lutz family was still living in the house and claiming that all of this madness was occurring, Dr. Stephen Kaplan, a self-styled vampirologist and ghost hunter, was called in to investigate the house. Kaplan and the Lutzes fell out after Kaplan said that he would expose any fraud that was found. Why throw him out…unless you’re faking it?
On the night of March 6, 1976, the house was investigated by Ed and Lorraine Warren, a husband and wife team of self-described as demonologists, together with a crew from the television station Channel 5 New York. Gene Campbell took a series of infrared time-lapse photographs. One of the images allegedly showed a “demonic boy” with glowing eyes who was standing at the foot of a staircase. The infamous photo that people keep claiming is the ghost of John DeFeo.
Even as the story unraveled for me and I doubted the stories of the family, that one photo kept me wondering. Even if the paranormal activity wasn’t as much as they stated, surely something must be in that house based on that picture. The picture frightened me. Seeing the face of a young ghost peering about a stairwell with glowing eyes gave me shudders.
But then, I looked up ‘fake ghosts’. That picture showed up. Intrigued, I clicked it wondering how they were going to explain that ghost boy away. Not only did they explain it, I felt super gullible for ever falling for it in the first place. It’s not a boy, it’s a grown man with glasses.
The picture is thought to be of one of the investigators working with the Warrens that night, Paul Bartz. Paul would sometimes wear glasses and may have had them on when the picture was snapped.
Whether it’s him or not, it’s definitely a person with glasses, which are causing the glow. Look at the image close up and it’s pretty clear.
My last little tinge of doubt vanished when I saw that close up. I believe it was all a hoax used to sell books. However, George and Kathy maintained their innocence until they died.