Monday, March 15, 2010

First Child Spirit

After dealing with Kira, I was eager for the next case that would allow me to deal with children. Unfortunately, it would be nearly four months before I was able to connect with another child. This case, however, was much different: this child was the ghost instead of the child being bothered by a spirit.

Stacey* had called us several times before, but always changed her mind on having us investigate out of the fear that her neighbors would laugh at her for believing her house was haunted. In a small town, news travels fast, and the thought of the community backlash was enough to keep Stacey from following up with the team. However, we promised we would come in with just a few people and backpacks carrying our equipment, rather than our normal cases and full team. Stacey agreed, and a couple of weeks later I arrived at her house with a backpack of equipment and one of our case management members. Stacey told our case management that her son had been killed by a truck a few years ago, and ever since that time, she felt as if he was still in the house.

Stacey walked us through the upstairs hall where she told us that a rubber ball would roll down that area. She would pick it up and put it back in his room, and later it would roll back down the hall again. Walking into his room, it looked as though a young boy was still living there: the room was filled with toys, the bed neatly made, and a book lay by a large chair waiting to be read. The scene was heartbreaking, and I wondered if perhaps Stacey was simply hopeful that her son was still there.

I realized that if we rushed this investigation, Stacey would think that we just didn’t try hard enough, and, while all clients deserve answers, I knew that she would argue with me over not finding anything --- especially if we were in and out in only a couple of hours. We agreed to stay for a full overnight investigation, and got to work setting up the few pieces of equipment I had brought along.

While sitting in the child’s room, I took the ball that was said to roll down the hall and rolled it over to my case manager. He rolled it back and after a few times of doing so, I invited the child to play with us. When nothing happened, we decided to see how likely it was that the ball would roll all the way down the hall with a strong breeze; so, we opened the window. It was a particularly windy night in Northern Chicago and we figured minus a small tornado this was the strongest wind the room would probably see. The ball rolled out into the hall, hit the wall, and rolled down the hall. With no carpet on the floor, the ball quickly rolled all the way down the hall and stopped just short of the steps. Ball debunked, we moved on to trying EVP work and even provoking after several hours of the house staying silent.

With no evidence, I approached Stacey about trying some EVP work of her own. After all, children are notoriously shy around adults they don’t know and I wanted to make sure that we truly did everything possible to assure this mother that her child had moved on. Leaving the location the next morning, I sent our audio, pictures, and small amount of video to our evidence team who found nothing.

I went back to Stacey and sat down with her, mother to mother. I explained our lack of evidence and I assured her that if I lost my kid, I would hold on to the hope that they were still with me. However, we had no proof that this was true in her case; but I knew that it wouldn’t be enough for her. I gave her a digital recorder and told her that, in my opinion, EVP is the strongest form of evidence we ever get. I suggested she use it to try and speak with her son, and maybe one day she’d get the answer she was looking for --- be it actual evidence, or the ability to move on.

I followed up with Stacey several times, and she always told me she was trying, but with no luck. After a year, I called her one final time. She told me that she had put the digital recorder away; that, through therapy and a lack of evidence, she was finally able to accept that her son was gone, and was at peace.

Monday, February 1, 2010


It didn’t take long for me to discover why no one really wanted to work with children who experience paranormal activity in their homes. I was very often met with, “I don’t know,” and, “Um . . .” while the child was looking at their parents to provide an answer for them. Though it was frustrating and downright impossible at times, I knew that eventually we would get a case where talking with the children would prove useful.

The fist case that gave me that chance happened in the dead of Winter in a four-room house with only two space heaters for warmth. The family had come to us as a last resort because their ten year-old daughter *Kira was afraid to be in the house by herself. She claimed that a boy was waiting in the house for her every day after school and that he would make fun of her, pull her hair, and often try to scare her. On more than one occasion, her mother would leave work early because Kira would call her crying, saying that the boy was back; but when she got home, she couldn’t find him.

Frustrated, and nearly losing her job for all the times she had left, Kira’s mother had started refusing to come home early. She was convinced Kira was crying out for attention because she just didn’t like being home alone for two hours; but her mother had no other choice. It wasn’t until cabinet doors started opening and slamming shut --- seemingly on their own --- that Kira’s mother started to put more thought into the mysterious boy. Over the Summer, Kira had gone away to camp for a week, and her mother would return home to find papers scattered all over the floor and cabinet doors open. With no animals in the house, and no sign of a break-in, she was at a loss for what could be causing these small disturbances.

When Kira returned home from camp, things quieted down around the house, and Kira made no mention of the boy that she claimed had previously been picking on her. Satisfied that her daughter had lost her imaginary friend, Kira’s mother returned to work. Everything seemed fine until the Fall. When Kira returned to school, the disturbances returned. Towels would be thrown onto the floor, things on their shared dresser would be knocked over, and at one point, papers were thrown from the desk onto the floor close enough to a space heater that a small fire broke out. It was after the fire that Kira’s mother called us for help.

At first, Kira was like every other child I had come to work with: she couldn’t answer my questions, and continuously looked to her mother for answers. Finally, with permission from her mother, I took Kira to their bedroom and told her about my experience as a child. As soon as she learned that I didn’t think she was lying, and that I was there to help her, Kira started opening up about the boy who just wanted her to stay home and play with him.

Our investigation only lasted a little over two hours (because there is not much you can do in such a small house). We were able to catch some very clear EVPs, all in a child’s voice. Further research found that a family had been murdered in the same house. When presented with that information, Kira’s mother said that she was aware of the murder, and understood that when she had purchased the house, that was why it had been so cheap.

We couldn’t say whether or not Kira was in any real danger from the boy who was looking for a playmate, but we were concerned over the fact that one fire had all ready broken out because of his tantrums, and there could possibly be another. Kira’s mother asked for a cleansing and was provided with one; but she told us that the activity was still going on. We asked if we could help in any other way, but Kira’s mother said declined any further assistance.

Even though the case was several years ago, I still think about Kira, and wonder how her and her mother have dealt with the little boy that seems to be looking for someone to play with.