Monday, 28 December 2015

Bart the Zombie cat:

I saw a news article recently about a cat that arose from the grave in Florida.
Either “Bart the Zombie cat” was buried prematurely after being found struck by a car by his owners neighbor, or his owner Ellis Hutson’s home is built on top an ancient Micmac Indian burial ground, à la Stephen King’s “pet sematary”.
Poor Bart the zombie cat arose from his shallow grave after 5 days of burial. 
He was stuck by a car and laid to rest, only to dig his way out and return to his owner.

He is currently in the hands of the humane society who are covering his medical costs and nursing him back to life
It is unknown weather Bart will be returned to his original owner.

(Sources: humane society fb, abc7)

The Death Valley Germans:

In October 1996 an abandoned Plymouth Voyager van was discovered near the Anvil Spring Canyon in Death Valley national park, by a ranger doing routine checks. Since the use of vehicles in this area was prohibited, it was unusual to find a car out there, much less an abandoned one, which was totally unsuitable for the terrain and seemed to have flat tires and was broken down. It turned out to be a rental, with California license plates and had been rented by a family of German tourists went missing while driving through Death Valley in July. The case remained unsolved until 2009, when one hiker got curious enough to take matters into his own hands and train to obtain the skills necessary to “man track” in order to find the missing death Valley Germans.

This is link to his website, with his journal detailing the story of how he went about resolving the case.
It’s an amazing read.

Sunday, 20 December 2015

Missing: Jim Kimball

As a child, Kimball was described by his family members as shy, sensitive and easy to get along with. But it was his cold and repressed reaction to the death of his father, when Jim was just 16 years old, which caused concern. 
Three years later, he was diagnosed with a schizoaffective disorder and manic depression. He had been acting out of character, so much so that his family members noticed and took him to see a professional.  Jim admitted to hearing voices and admitted that he carried a sadness around with him on account of his father’s passing.

He was prescribed the medication he required to help deal with his disorder, and although he graduated and worked several jobs, his life was often disturbed by relapses which lead to Kimball being hospitalized in order to recover.

In 1993 Jim traveled 10 miles from the halfway house that he was staying in, to his childhood home, in order to spend Easter with his family.
One of his brothers heard a commotion from down in the basement and upon investigation found Jim taking out his frustration on a stereo he couldn’t get working.
His brother confronted him, asking why he was having a tantrum and if he was feeling unwell and needed to go to the hospital. Jim rejected the idea and the two cleaned up the mess he had made.

That would be the last time anyone in the family saw Jim Kimball.
He took no money and no possessions. He walked out of the house and never returned.
Flyers were circulated and calls were made to hospitals and homeless shelters, to no avail.

A year later and 90 miles away officers patrolling south bend Indiana picked up a hitchhiking man, who appeared to be under the influence. They tested him with a breathalyzer and after coming up with a reading of 0.0 allowed him to be on his way. It was only a month later that they saw the flyer and matched the description to the man, by which time it was too late.

He has still not been found, and his family worries that without his medication he may never be able to find his way back home, nor care for himself alone.

If you have any information contact the Maywood Police Department on  708-450-4888 OR 708-450-9487(fax)

(sources: doe network, unsolved

Saturday, 19 December 2015

Three headed Japanese demon mummy:

The three faced demon mummy head of Zengyoji. 
Found in storage in a temple in Kanazawa, Japan. 
Origin story unknown.

Salvador Alvarenga's survival at sea:

36 year old Salvador Alvarenga earned the title of the longest surviving castaway after surviving on a diet of birds, turtle blood, sharks, rain water and his own urine for 438 days.
What was supposed to be a 48 hour fishing trip took an almost fatal turn as Alvarenga and his companion, 15 year old Ezequiel Cordoba, encountered a vicious storm and violent waves that tore through the ship.

His companion, who would earn $50 for going along on the two day trip, would not survive the ordeal. He ate a bird that had previously consumed a poisonous sea snake and after falling ill he began refusing food.

Alvarenga was an older experienced fisherman, and knew that he had to keep eating anything he could to survive, however, Cordoba, with his deteriorating health, began to panic and have hallucinations and delusions, often trying to throw himself over board and into the ocean despite the presence of sharks in the water. He would not recover and died on the boat.

Salvador Alvarenga kept Cordoba’s corpse for company, holding conversations with it and making small talk for almost a week. He would tell the body “Good morning” and ask “have you eaten yet?” often answering his own questions. Finally realizing his madness and fearing the onset of insanity, he tossed the corpse over board into the open water.
Alvarenga admitted that he wanted to commit suicide a few days after the death of his friend, but his religious beliefs would not allow it. He pushed on.

Eventually, After 13 long months lost at sea, on the 30th of January of 2014, Salvador Alvarenga swam to the shore of a small island of the Ebon Atoll where he was found dehydrated, naked and bellowing in Spanish by two locals.

After recovering, he published a book about his experience, titled “438 days”, which only managed to sell around 1,500 copies. Cordoba’s family filed to sue him for the sum of one million dollars and claimed that Alvarenga had eaten his companion despite denial from the man in question.

(sources: Wikipedia, People)

Saturday, 12 December 2015

Where is Suzanne Gloria Lyall?

Suzanne Gloria Lyall was a quiet young woman and an Avid “Rush” fan, often clad in black with a silver runic “S” pendent on a black cord choker. 

A student at  SUNY, in Albany, New york, 19 year old Suzy, as she was known to her friends, was also employed part time at “Babbage’s software” located at the Cross gates mall in Guilderland. She was interested in computers, so the job suited her well.
Suzanne was seen for the last time in Albany on March 2nd 1998.
She was wearing a black trench coat, a black T-shirt and blue jeans as well as assorted items of jewelry, including her silver “S” circle necklace, a gold bow ring and a silver ring in the shape of a frog with diamonds.
She went missing after her shift at Babbage’s. She finished at 9:20pm and took a CDTA bus back to the circle stop at SUNY campus around 15 minutes later.
She hasn’t been seen since that night, leaving her work name tag behind in the visitor’s parking lot.

Lyall’s ATM card was used 1 day later on March 3rd at 4pm. The person who made the purchase has never been identified, however they got the pin correct. 
Suzanne’s co-workers at Babbage’s reported that she mentioned having a stalker; however she didn’t seem frightened or unnerved.

She needed her glasses or lenses to see, due to extremely bad eyesight. Suzanne had also had a boyfriend who alerted her parents that she hadn't shown up the night before. It is unknown why he did not search for her that night, as he lived locally. He was also unhelpful in the investigation, refusing to be questioned. 

If you have any information on the case, please contact:

Barbara newhall follett: The girl who walked away

By the age of 12, child prodigy Barbara Newhall Follett, with the assistance of her father, had penned her first novel “The house without windows”, which was published through Knopf publishing in 1927.
A year later, her next book, “The voyage of the Norman D” was published and received the same literary success as the previous novel.

With her quick success came a quick disenchantment, and by the age of 14 Barbara became depressed and disillusioned following the separation of her mother and father. Although still a teenager, she had hit the peak of her career.

In 1933, the then 19 year old Follett married and traveled with a man named Nickerson Rogers. Although their marriage was a happy one, Barbara believed that her husband had been unfaithful. This depressed her greatly, so much so that on the 7th of December 1939, she left the house following an argument and was never seen again.

She left with only $30 on her person.

Follett’s disappearance went unreported for 2 weeks. Her husband claimed that he was waiting for her to return, however when she didn’t, he reported it to the police.

The missing poster, which was circulated by the media featuring her surname as “Rogers” as opposed her famous pen name “Follett”, was largely unnoticed.
Despite Barbara’s mother and her stern words to Rogers regarding his lack of effort in the investigation, and her accusations against him, 

Follett was never seen again. 

What happened to Jonathan Luna?

I've been reading about a lot of unsolved mysteries this week.
Maybe you've already heard of this one? 
What do you think happened to Jonahtan Luna? 

On the 4th of December 2003 the body of 38 year old U.S attorney assistant, Jonathan Luna, was found dead in a creek in Pennsylvania.
Although the cause of the death was ultimately drowning, Luna had also been stabbed across his neck and chest a total of 36 times with his own Swiss army pen knife. At the time he was working a case involving a drug ring which was supposed to be presented on the day he was found dead. The night before he left he had promised to fax over some his notes on the case, but never got the chance.

On the night of December 3rd, Jonathan left the Baltimore courthouse at approximately 11:38pm. He then proceeded to drive north east on 1-95, using his E-Z pass to clear 3 toll ways before changing to tickets which would eventually be found spotted in his own blood by investigators hours later.
An hour and ten minutes into his journey he made a transaction at an ATM close to Delaware before crossing the toll bridge into the state.

His ATM trail ran cold after he purchased gas at a service station around 3:20am.
By 4:04am Luna’s car was stationary in Denver, Pennsylvania before being driven into the Lancaster County Creek. The vehicle was not discovered until 5:30am by a driller named Daniel Gehman, and a co-worker of his, who were employed by “Sensenig and Weaver Well Drilling”. They noticed blood smeared across the car and contacted police.

Luna was found face down in the water under the partially submerged front end of his car.
His blood was found pooled in the back seat, suggesting the possibility that he had not been driving, although this is a debated theory.
The front left side of the car and the driver’s door also had blood smeared on them and the $200 he had withdrawn earlier was scattered around the car.
Despite the FBI theorizing that Luna’s death was a suicide, the local authorities suspected it a homicide due to the later discovery of another blood type and a partial fingerprint found in the vehicle. The FBI claimed that there were no defensive wounds on the hands and arms of Luna, which are usually present on homicide victims. The wounds were dubbed superficial hesitation wounds by the Bureau, due to the shallowness of the inflictions which is often something seen in cases of suicide. The coroner’s report conflicts with the theory and stated that Luna did in fact display defensive wounds as well as cuts to his neck consistent with murder victims.
He also had a cut to his carotid artery, a head wound, possibly from the fall into the creek, and bruising to his testicles.
An unnamed official in the case stated that the FBI also suspected that Luna’s case could have been set up for sympathy as he was under investigation at the time. They proposed the idea that he didn’t actually intend to die.

Investigation into Luna’s personal life for possible suicide motives turned up debt, an upcoming investigation in regards to stolen money of which Luna was a suspect, and possibly infidelity due to a profile on a dating website and a charge card he had concealed from his wife.
Jonathan Luna had neglected to take his eye glasses, which he needed for driving, as well as his cell phone.

Jonathan Luna left behind a wife, two children and a lot of unanswered questions.

There is a $100,000 reward for any information leading to the conviction of his killer, if indeed there is one.

The case remains unsolved.

Thursday, 10 December 2015

The cult of Aravindan Balakrishnan:

I saw this story in the news recently and after reading a lot of articles on it decided I'd put together my own post with links to interviews and sources.
Although I do not go into descriptive deal, I do have to warn you that this post does contain mentions of subjects that some people may find difficult to read about, so please skip over this post to avoid mentions of rape and abuse. I've put some helplines and contacts at the end of the post (usa/uk/worldwide)

73 year old Aravindan Balakrishnan and his 67 year old wife, Chanda Pattni, were arrested on the 21st of November 2013 in London, under the suspicion of slavery and domestic servitude. They held 3 women captive, who had been brainwashed, abused both emotionally and physically, and shackled by invisible cuffs that prevented them from escaping the house they were held trapped in for almost 30 years.

Balakrishnan was said to have used rape and violence as well as mental abuse to control his female victims. By the time he was finished with them, they believed that he was a God.
He claimed that he could control the powers of nature and the elements, that he could cause natural disasters and dissemble governments. “I am nature and nature is me” he told his followers.

He began to “purify” the women, to “Clean” them of their previous lives and strip them of their identity and dignity, along with the help of his mind reading mystical assistant who he referred to as “Jackie”. Balakrishnan had invoked Jackie, who was an unseen force, to keep the women in line and in fear when he wasn’t around to do so himself. If they had disobedient actions or thoughts, Jackie would know. Jackie could torture and kill, he assured them.

By having his victims cut off contact with their families, he managed to keep three of them for over 3 decades. Without family, without identity, without choice, they lost their dignity and freedom to  Aravindan Balakrishnan. Any followers who had jobs outside of the cult would donate their entire salaries per week. They could not go out alone and would constantly have to be with another member when outside of the commune.
Their leader and captor, Balakrishnan was the son of a soldier. He was politically active as a student and thought of himself something of a revolutionary. He immigrated to the UK following his studies in Singapore, and continued to be politically active while in England; always at demonstrations, and protests, with one hand in a raised fist and the other waving a chairman Mao banner.  

He was a member of the British communist party until he was forced to leave and went on to make his own group. He badmouthed his old party in a newsletter he produced on a second hand printer at his HQ, and gained some followers. Over time most would leave, but a dozen dedicated female followers stayed, some of which continue to support him even today.
Balakrishnan now had his own group, a cult, and they were “Theworkers institute of Marxist-Leninism-Mao Zedong thought” and based themselves in Brixton, South London. They held their meetings at 140 acre lane, which today serves as a restaurant.

Over the many years his female victims were under his control he subjected them to horrific abuse and conditioning, fueled by his own delusions of God-like power.
He would rape and beat them in front of each other, and when he wasn’t making displays of his brutality he would call his followers to his office and force them to perform sex acts on him and ingest his “Elixir of life”. One member, Sian Davies, even bore his child. The child grew up in the commune, only leaving one a year on her birthday as she got older. For some time, she was not even aware that she was Balakrishnan’s daughter. He told his followers that she had been born of some electronic satellite.

When on trial, Balakrishnan dismissed the rape charges and the charges of domestic servitude, claiming to the court that his followers wanted to serve him domestically and that they wanted to have sex with him, in fact, he said, they competed for his sexual attention. “They were very pushy”, he stated. They were simply providing him a service, he claimed, so that he could immerse himself in his political work.
In fact, so much was Balakrishnan’s delusion that he even laughed at the rape allegations in court; He referred to himself as “The natural center of all things”. To the few that he broke down and brainwashed, he was.

There were deaths in the cult between ’86 and ’92. Davies, the mother of his child, fell from a window in what was thought to be an attempted escape. One follower died as a result of a head injury from a fall in the Peckford Place apartment where they stayed.

Three of the captive women were recused in October 2013 after one of them, a 57 year old Irish woman named Josephine Herivel, contacted a charity called “The freedom charity” after watching an ITV documentary about forced marriage. The charity then contacted the local police and the woman was rescued along with 30 year old British Rosie Davies and 69 year old Malaysian Aishah Wahab.

The now 33 year old daughter of Davies and Balakrishnan, known by her alias as “Fran”, revealed that it was her secret reading sessions that opened her eyes to the truth about her father. Fictional villains such as J. K. Rowling’s Lord Voldemort and Tolkien’s Sauron made her realize that her father was a bad man. 
She revealed in an interview with aBritish day time T.V show that she forgave Balakrishnan and that “hate didn’t help anyone”, going on to quote a Nelson Mandela speech “… I knew if I didn't leave my bitterness and hatred behind, I'd still be in prison.”
Fran is working towards getting her independence and is progressing well.


Other RLIH posts that you may find interesting: 

Terri Hoffman and the cult murders - "Self-made spiritual guru, Terri Hoffman, attracted all kinds of people, from all kinds of different backgrounds, with her own brand of new age spirituality. She ran a free meditation class out of Southern Methodist University, where she gained followers and taught subjects familiar to most spiritual classes, such as astral travel, reincarnation, the theory of karma and meditation." (To continue the article, click here << )

The enslaved hitchhiker - "It was the 19th of May, 1977. Twenty year old Colleen Stan was hitchhiking to a friend’s surprise birthday party. Many people used to hitchhike in the seventies, and it was nothing new to Colleen, who was a semi pro at this point. She let a few cars pass her by as she scouted the perfect ride, and eventually settled on a couple who had a baby with them. Climbing into their blue van, she could never have imagined the horrific seven year ordeal ahead of her..." (To continue the article click here << )

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Missing in Missouri:

On the 4th of April 1991, Angela Marie Hammond’s abandoned car was found in the parking lot of a food barn store in Clinton, Missouri.
20 year old Hammond had been talking to her fiancé in a phone booth at around 11:45pm. She informed him that she would have to cancel their plans to meet as she was tired and had decided to head home. During the conversation she mentioned a dirty, bearded man in a truck had been circling around the parking lot suspiciously and had gotten out, flash light in hand, acting as though he had lost something.
It was then that Angela, who was four months pregnant at the time, let out a scream.
The line cut.
Her fiancé, a man named Rob Shafer, got into his car and raced to Hammond, passing a green F-150 Ford pickup truck with a water / nature scene obscuring the back window and what appeared to be a damaged fender. As he passed the vehicle, he heard Angela screaming his name, and turned to tail the truck. He followed it for over 2 miles, before his own car ran into problems, forcing him to pull over.
The truck escaped him, taking Angela with it.
Witnesses at the Food Barn parking lot described the driver of the Ford as a Caucasian man with a mustache, clad in a dark colored baseball cap and overalls with seeing glasses.
Despite reports of some unconfirmed sightings in various states, Angela Hammond was never seen again.

Cheryl Ann Kenney, was also kidnapped in Missouri the same year, this time in Nevada. Kenney’s white Chevrolet was also found abandoned in the parking lot. She worked as a clerk at a convenience store. Since it as a slow night on Business state highway 71, she decided to close up early at 10pm and head home.
Despite 2 witnesses hearing a woman’s screams around 10:20pm, they failed to report it to the police until after reading of the woman’s disappearance in the media, by which time it was too late.
An investigation into Cheryl Kenney’s personal life revealed that her mother had recently passed away. Investigators briefly considered it a motive for voluntary disappearance, but an ill father, a husband, two children and the fact that she had only $6 on her person at the time of disappearance indicated otherwise.

Another case thought to be linked to that of Hammond and Kenney is that of Trudy Darby, also in 1991.
She was also a store clerk at a convenience store, taken from her place of employment at Mack’s Creek.
However, in this case, $200 was stolen from the cash register and Darby’s naked body was found two days later in the little Niangua River, with two bullets to the head.
Her killers, Jesse Rush and Marvin Chaney, who were half-brothers, were charged and convicted of the robbery, as well as with the rape and murder of Trudy Darby. 

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

The origins of the EVP:

We’ve all seen at least one of the many ghost hunting TV shows out there; self pro-claimed paranormal investigators waving EMF meters around, swinging crystals in circles and attempting to record the voices of the dead. But did you ever wonder about the roots of the EVP?

Although he was known for being a writer and intellectual, it was parapsychology that Latvian born Konstantīns Raudive was passionate about.
So much so that he dedicated the last decade of his existence to the study of voices from beyond.

Once a student of psychiatrist and psychotherapist Carl Jung, as well as working as a university lecturer whilst in exile in Sweden to escape the Soviet occupation of Latvia during the second world war, Raudive settled into his old age with an intense interest in the afterlife.

In 1968 he published his book “Unhörbares wird hörbar” (inaudible becomes audible). The book was the fruit of 10 years of investigative labor into electronic voice phenomenon, or EVP for short, which was published three years later in English under the title of “breakthrough:an Amazing Experiment in Electronic Communication with the Dead”.

He made over 100,000 recordings in his decade of research, using methods such as leaving a microphone and recorder in an empty room and allowing it to record without interaction, recording radio static and white noise and diode recording using a regular antenna crystal radio, set to AM frequency.

Raudive was Originally inspired by Friedrich Jürgenson’s book published in 1964 titled “Voices from space” which was inspired by some reel to reel recordings of EVP’s Jürgenson had accidentally picked up while recording birds singing in his garden. Allegedly, the birds could not be heard at all when he played the  recording back, and instead there was static and hissing. He heard the voice of his passed mother “Friedel, can you hear me? It’s Mummy”.

After hearing the voice, Jürgenson was said to abandon all of his other interests in pursuit of Parapsychology. In 1965 Raudive and Jürgenson met and together began investigating the voices of the dead. Raudive would listen to the audio over and over and was said to clearly hear and understand the different polyglottic voices present on the tapes. 

Here's a YT video of the Flexi for "Breakthrough" with examples of the EVPs. 

(Broken link. Soon to be replaced.)

(sources: worlditc, sonoloo, wikipedia)

Joseph Towne the moulageur:

Hello there. 
For those of you who don't do well with mention of disease, I would give this post a miss.
I've actually attempted to keep the mentions of disease to a minimum in this post and concentrated on the art and history side of things, as I don't like to gross people out too much. There is no real gore in the post below, everything is a wax work or sculpture. 

British born Joseph Towne was a moulageur, stereoscopist and sculptor. He made models exclusively for Guy’s hospital in central London, and remained loyal to the hospital for as long as it remained open, with the exception of sculpting for some international clients in the USA and India.
Towne was born in Hertfordshire, and spent two years an artist’s apprentice. His first major project was constructing a to-scale human skeleton using anatomy books as his reference. Having never seen an authentic human skeleton in his life, he traveled to London where there was a Society of Arts competition in progress. There, a doctor looked over Townes work and wrote him a note of approval. He came second in the competition, and was only 17 years of age at the time. The following year he took the number one spot with his anatomical wax model of a dissected head.

Towne went on to work at Guy’s Hospital for an anatomist named Dr. Hilton and physician and scientist Thomas Addison, who taught materia medica lectures at the time. Addison discovered much pathology during his career, most famously Addison's disease and Addisonian anemia. Towne’s anatomical models were invaluable to Addison and his students, and he sculpted around 800 at Addisons request during his career at Guy’s hospital. He made 1000 of them in his life time. The wax models allowed training medics to study the symptoms and progressive effects of contagious diseases without contracting them.  

Now day, for the purpose of medical and military medical training (combat injury simulation), modern day monlageurs apply imitation inflictions and injuries to otherwise healthy subjects, usually using make-up and latex.

The website “militarymoulage” has extensive information and galleries on military moulage combat injury simulation and training. You can visit their page by clicking the link. 
This website, Moulage supplies, also gives you more of an idea of contemporary moulage techniques and uses. 

Although not often celebrated as a particularly artistic moulageur, Italian born, Baroque era sculptor Gaetano Giulio Zumbo was one of the first known anatomists. He created morbid sculptures often themed around death and disease, often looked upon as memento mori or curiosity pieces.
Examples of his work can be found at the Museum of Natural History in Florence in the La specola section of the building. A couple of examples of his work can be seen below.

(images: Wikipedia and 

Friday, 27 November 2015

Real life Ouija board murders, Dorothea irene turley:

I have an Ouija board related post for you today.
I was wondering if there were any cases of Ouija board related deaths in the media when I found out about a case back in the 1930's and thought I'd write about it here. 

It was November, 1933 in Prescott Arizona. Mother and daughter, Dorothea Irene Turley and 15 year old Mattie Turley, were engaged in an Ouija board session in dimly lit room at their family home.
The pair placed their fingers on the planchette as it slid across the board from letter to letter and commanded “Kill your daddy”. It assured them that nobody would find out about it.
Dorothea had instilled a deep belief of the supernatural in her teenage daughter.
15 year old Mattie knew that she must obey the commands relayed to her by the spirit board. She knew she must kill her father, an ex-US naval officer by the name of Ernest Turley, in order to free her mother.
Dorothea had decided that her life should take a new direction. She had grown bored over the years and had her sights set on marrying a handsome and wealthy cowboy by the name of Brent Pearce; she assured her daughter that disposing of daddy was the most efficient way to do it.
Back in the days of her youth, Dorothea was a much celebrated local celebrity. She had won the title of “Miss American Venus” in 1917. The competition had 50,000 contestants, hopeful women and girls from all across the States competing to see who came closest to the measurements of the famous statue, Venus de Milo. Dorothea was almost exact and took the title. Despite her many offers of proposals at the time, she chose to marry Ernest Turley, a handsome and charismatic sailor.
They eloped and had to children together, a son named David, and a daughter, Mattie. Letters of congratulations flooded in, but Dorothea’s fame would finally fizzle out.

When Ernest retired from the Navy, they moved to California for business reasons. Dorothea, no longer recognized in her new town, had become bored and began to dabble with the occult. She developed asthma, which resulted in the family taking a long vacation in Arizona, on advice of a doctor who informed them that fresh air was the best remedy for her ailment.

Up in the mountains of Prescott, Dorothea had regular sessions with her talking board, consulting it about almost everything. She attempted to search for gold on the property, and grew more and more disgruntled with her husband’s inadequate salary.
She enquired about his life insurance policies, asking how to claim the $5,000 payout in the event of his untimely death.

Armed with her orders from the spirit board, young Mattie shot her father twice in the back with the shotgun he had given to her as a gift.
Ernest, believing it was an accident, scolded her about gun safety before telling her to, go seek help.
While he was in recovery, a local sheriff unraveled Mattie’s lies, when he pointed out that the wounds her father had sustained didn’t reflect her statement about accidentally dropping the gun and it going off from 30 feet away.
She broke down and confessed that the shooting was intentional, and that was obeying the commands of the Ouija.

Ernest died the following month, on Boxing Day at a naval hospital.

The handsome, wealthy cowboy, Kent Pearce, despite witness statements from his teenage apprentice and a neighbor that he and Dorothea seemed romantically involved, was not a suspect in the case.

Dorothea was arrested for the intent to murder and sentenced with 15 years – life.
She appealed and was released in 1936.

Mattie was shipped off to a reform school in Arizona, where she would be kept until she was 21 years old.

Ernest is buried at St. Johns cemetery in Arizona.  

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

My Sleep paralysis experiences so far:

Hello everyone. I have a more personal post for you today. 
I know it took a while to get to posting this, but it also took more time than usual to write, so sorry about that. Anyways, this is about my experiences with Sleep Paralysis and some information and thoughts on it. It's not as polished as I'd like it to be, and I'm sure I've forgotten a couple of other experiences, but it's been a while since I made a post now, so I'll come back and update again later.
Thanks for stopping by.

The first time: 
My first episode of sleep paralysis was brief.
So brief, that at the time, I didn’t actually associate it with sleep paralysis.
I was a kid and my friend was staying over at my house. 
After my parents had retired for the evening, we had taken our torches, bundled up blankets and pillows and crept downstairs to the living room to set up a camp. We made a tent from the blanket and a couple of chairs and set it up in the alcove of the bay window in the living room, pulling the curtains shut to section off our own little part of the large space. The draped curtains were long and heavy; however they didn’t fully touch the floor and left around a foot of space.
We ate snacks and read scary stories from a book we had and talked about school before eventually falling asleep.

 I awoke without reason, it wasn’t morning yet and nothing had disturbed me.
I stared out into the dark room, my eyes adjusting; it looked exactly the same as it did before.
I stared at the open door, which lead to the front door of the house and also to the second floor.
Basically it was just a little entrance space, with a framed picture of Van Gogh’s Starry night.
From nowhere a head appeared; a male head on an awkwardly bent neck, snaking around the wall to stare into the living room, staring directly at me. The eyes were missing, and instead there were two pools of swirling black.
At the time I thought it was my father, however he was a well-built man and the Pre-world war 2 house had its original and incredibly creaky staircase. Nobody could walk up or down those stairs undetected. I hadn't heard anyone approach. It was dead silent with the exception of our breathing.
I convinced myself it was my dad, but the elongated neck, the gauntness of the face, the swirling eyes and the tall height that it was at, screamed otherwise.

I backed up away from the gap in the curtains, moved closer to my friend, closed my eyes tightly and must have eventually fell asleep.
The next morning my father opened the curtains and jumped back in shock to find us there in our makeshift tent. He laughed and asked us how our adventure was.
From the shock we initially gave him, I didn’t even have to ask if he was the one checking up on us last night.

I was scared and nervous throughout my whole childhood following that episode of sleep paralysis.
I was very much into ghosts and vampires and loved scary stories and scary TV shows, but I never enjoyed them in the same way again after that. I didn’t know what sleep paralysis was and I insisted that our house was haunted. I slept with the lights on every night, much to my parent’s annoyance. They eventually bought me some night lights and I continued my routine of using them well into my teens.

Return of the swirling eyed man:
I experienced the head with the swirling black eyes one more time, around a year after the first time I’d seen it.
This time I “Awoke”, stood up and left my room, walking to the hallway, past my parent’s room, in order to go downstairs for whatever reason. They had their door open as it was an uncharacteristically hot evening. My mother had her back to the door; however my father was lying on his side, facing the open door, with the blankets pulled up, so only his head and part of his neck was sticking out. His eyes were open, but they weren’t his regular hazel eyes, they were big, black pools, swirling in the sockets.
I eventually woke up in reality, and crept out into the hallway to peer into their room. They were sleeping deeply, my father slack jawed and snoring.
Strangely, their previously closed door was now open, and it hadn’t been earlier in the evening. It was small coincidences like this that made the sleep paralysis experiences feel as if they were real.

Door to another dimension: 
The next episode was years later.
I was staying over at a friend’s place. He lived in this huge, old, four story house (including the basement and attic) which he shared with his girlfriend and another housemate.
I slept in the basement, which had a couch, a mattress, some pillows and a blanket, as well as the house PC.
I chose to stay in the basement because it was far away from the others and I really needed some alone time. It was also home to the PC and the kitchen was also down there, so I could cook the food I had brought with me, as I would be staying for five nights, at the end of which I’d make the five hour journey back to my city.

Honestly, it was pretty spooky down there, and to make matters worse, my friend and his house mates were all hippies, who at night time, had me carry a candle around in the dark to conserve electricity. So if I ever needed the bathroom, I’d have to stumble around the darkness with a candle in this old fashioned brass candle holder that would only stay lit if you walked at a snail’s pace. I looked like something out of an Edgar Allen Poe book.

A couple of nights into my stay, I was sitting on the couch in the basement, with a torch balanced and propped up on the arm of the chair reading a zine. I had found a box of them in the corner and had been slowly making my way through the pile I’d selected each night. I was reading a zine on living for free, dumpster diving and whatnot, if I remember correctly.
A small square of light formed in the darkness in front of me in the center of the room.
It expanded until it was the size of a generic door and looked as if someone had cut a square into the atmosphere that lead directly to another dimension. It was full of bright, blinding light and made my eyes hurt.
It slowly came towards me and went from being amazing to terrifying in 0.5 milliseconds.
I tried to move. I couldn’t. I struggled. Nothing. I felt as though I was about to be engulfed into this nowhere land. I would fall into this world of blinding light and vanish without a trace. No-one would ever see me again.
I woke up.

This episode wasn’t as terrifying as the swirling eyed man, but it was the first time that I’d seen something that didn’t resemble a living character.
It was also the first time that I was unaware that I’d actually fallen asleep in the first place.

In the morning I noticed the door separating the basement room from the kitchen allowed a significant amount of light through the flimsy privacy curtain that was hanging in front of it, and wondered if that’s where the inspiration for that particular episode came from. Maybe I registered seeing the door the previous night and it crept into my dream.

I later told my friend and his housemates, who seemed in awe of my experience and thought it was “Awesome”. His girlfriend showed me passages from some guys self-published book on how to lucid dream and how she’d been trying to do it for so long. When I told her I was able to control my regular dreams she was amazed and said that it was rare and that she wished she could do it do.
I believed it was normal and had never imagined people would try to induce this kind of thing. Then again they were spiritual hippies and often dabbled in drugs recreationally in order to open their third eyes and see the unseen, so…

The book directed the reader to pretend they were some kind of druid in a white cloak riding a white horse in a land of white. It was ridiculous in my opinion but each to their own. I didn’t dream of white horses and Tolkien fantasy lands, I dreamt of demons and monsters and remnants of the Catholic upbringing I’d tried so hard to forget.

In the know: 
I read up on sleep disorders and eventually found a chapter on sleep paralysis.
I discovered that as a self-defense mechanism, neurotransmitters in our brains send signals to shut down our major muscles when we sleep, in order to paralyze our bodies and make sure we don’t physically act out our dreams.
This explains how we’re unable to move beyond twitching and blinking during an episode of sleep paralysis.
Sleep paralysis itself is an overlap of states; a sleeping state and a waking state. During an episode, our bodies are still paralyzed by the sleep state but we are also aware of being awake, meaning the visuals, emotions and audio of our dreams seep into our waking state, causing a hallucination that we are unable to identify as a non-reality.
Basically, everything we experience feels 100% real. As a result of this, while it is happening, we have no indication to believe that it is anything other than reality.

Business time: 
It was during a visit to my parent’s house that I had my next episode; I was tired from the journey and fell asleep in my childhood bedroom. I was sleeping on my side, facing the wall, dreaming of landscapes or something. I remember this particular dream was like the opening scene of a big budget movie, where the camera rushes, birds-eye view, over tree tops and cities before finally homing in on the main character of the film, sitting in a coffee shop in small town somewhere.
I woke up and opened my eyes.
Suddenly, impossibly, there was a face level with mine; a head.
It was a man’s head, and he was red with anger. He was wearing a suit and tie. Well at least as far as I could tell. He had a white collar and a tie around his neck.
He opened his mouth; this huge, big, black, cavernous mouth and screamed a deafening, earth shattering scream.
That’s when I really woke up. My heart was pounding in my chest, but the episode was so brief that I just shook it off as a bad dream and went about my life.  

Yellow eyed shark toothed demon possesses a friend:  
My last episode was by far the most terrifying, although it was a couple of years ago now.
I had just moved into a new apartment. I hadn’t furnished it yet and was sleeping on a makeshift bed, since I hadn’t bothered to buy a real one. I was sleeping sideways again, low to the ground, on a sheet covered mattress with blankets and pillows. My friend was sleeping next to me with his back turned.
I was dreaming about an old neighborhood and it was all in hues of amber and burned orange, like a sort of seventies film.
I woke up and recognized my surroundings as the new apartment; everything seemed in order, or disorder, as I hadn’t unpacked anything.
From out of nowhere a man appeared. Just as with the man in the suit, he was sideways on, as if he was laying parallel to me, mirroring my position. He smiled, a big open mouth smile, and to my horror, his huge, once again, cavernous mouth was filled with overcrowded sand shark teeth.
I remember this image vividly, as my biggest fear is sharks. Even pictures of them make my heart race.
His eyes were shining yellow, his skin was dull grey and scaled. He opened his mouth of needle teeth and bellowed and screamed a deafening, demonic lion roar.
I struggled and struggled and woke up.
I sat bolt upright and turned to the shape of my sleeping friend under the blankets, who still was sleeping with his back to me.
I shook him to wake up but he was unusually unresponsive, so I shook him harder, eventually pulling him by his shoulder, over onto his back.

When I leaned over to look at his face he was laying there with his eyes open, they were vacant and staring up at the ceiling. He was smiling with a closed mouth and looked almost under the influence.
To my horror, his eyes flushed yellow, scales crawled over his skin and his teeth turned to needles. His head then flopped to the side and made eye contact with me.

I was suddenly back on my side in my original position, and he was back in front of me again, mirroring me, but this time with his hand pushing down on my head to keep it on the side to look at him. I felt sharp nails digging into my scalp and temple. I remember trying to thrash and struggle and turn my head, I remember the muscles in my neck contorting under the stress.

The yellow eyed shark toothed demon man leaned in closer and closer, screaming deafeningly until his face almost touched mine. It was chaotic, like there was a storm in the room. I managed to raise an arm up as a last act of self-defense and he sunk those teeth deep into the it.

I woke up; jolted into a sitting position like a bolt of lightning had shot through me.

I was too afraid to attempt to wake my friend again, who was sleeping with his back to me.
A couple of minutes of shock passed when I decided to warily shake him. He woke up drunken with sleepiness and confused by how terrified I was acting.

All day I was wildly paranoid that someone around me would suddenly turn into some kind of monster and that I’d wake up.

I was afraid that I was stuck in an infinite loop of these episodes and began having some sort of existential crisis. Maybe my life was just one big episode of sleep paralysis and I’d wake up as an 80 year old in a retirement home somewhere, having done none of the things I’ve done and knowing none of the people I know. I was rattled, alright.

The strangest part? My arm hurt all day. The muscle felt twisted and knotted up inside.

Of course I rationalized it; I’d slept on it or something, probably.

By now I knew about sleep paralysis, but strangely had not connected it to what I had been experiencing until someone explicitly told me that’s what was happening to me. That didn’t make the experience any less scary. They creep up on you and you don’t realize it’s happening until you wake up and it’s over. At least that’s how it was for me.

 I thought sleep paralysis was the classic “Old hag” staring at you or the shadow man sitting on your chest choking you. Not severed heads with swirling eyes, yellow eyed shark toothed demons or doors to other dimensions.

Alien abductees: 
I was interested in the link between the sleep disorder and alien abduction stories, as both things generally occur when a person is sleeping and could pass as the same thing. I decided to look up a few alien abductee stories to see if there were more similarities that could tie into sleep paralysis.
Typing “my alien abduction experience” in to Google I selected one of the links of the first page.
In this account the author writes that he’s had alien visits since he was four years old.
All of his episodes were whilst he was sleeping. There are no mentions in his brief summary of events of physical traces or evidence of the visitation; however he does mention that his mother apologized to him when she found out that he was also being visited by alien beings, as she also experienced the same thing.

I did a search to determine if sleep paralysis could be heritable, and found an article by with a quote from a psychologist from Sheffield University in England who was involved in study of sleep disorders.

"The main thing we've learned is [sleep paralysis] appears to be heritable, and there seem to be some genes influencing sleep and wake patterns involved"

This story really does tick all of the boxes of a classic sleep paralysis episode. However the author of the alien story is either not aware of the sleep disorder or has not considered it as an explanation before. 
This type of reoccurring sleep paralysis is referred to as RISP (recurrent isolated sleep paralysis) and is significantly rare. Usually sleep paralysis episodes happen only once, or a handful of times in person’s lifetime, although people with RISP may have sequential reoccurring episodes that make the hallucinations seem more real.

The author of the alien visitation story reports the first episode being in the 90’s, which was the era of the X-files franchise and all things alien and sci-fi.  There was a significant boom of trashy tabloid articles on abductees and entire families claiming to be abducted during that time, as well as UFO sightings and extra-terrestrial themed magazines trying to cash in on the craze. Maybe those images stuck with the author of the post since he was a child and he’s feared them more than anything since, which is why he keeps seeing them in his episodes.

That’s my journey with sleep paralysis so far.

As always, I've found a few  links if any of you are interested in further reading:
The Entity [ X ] This is a Channel4 (UK) Documentary containing reconstructions of a group of sufferer’s episodes. It is immensely creepy and also explains sleep paralysis depictions in art and literature throughout history.

Reddit Thread on Sleep paralysis [ X ]
NHS Information page [ X ]
Live Science article [ X ] “What makes sleep paralysis scary”
Sleep Education info page [ X ]

 I will continue to update this as time goes on. I felt it was long enough for now.
Thanks reading this far if you did!

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Tragedy at Santika:

It had been the 1st of January 2009 for only 35 minutes when tourist and local party goers alike, bringing in the New Year at Club Santika in Watthana, Bangkok, found themselves engulfed in flame and fire.

Only half an hour earlier they had celebrated the count down and danced to the live band, a local covers band ominously name “burn”.
There was only one way out, the main entrance door, and tragically many were trampled in the stampede of customers rushing to escape. Some even passed out before they could attempt to do so, from inhaling the fumes from burning plastic.
Horrifying photos and videos from the scene show the charred bodies of those who were not lucky enough to get out, stretching towards the exit, frozen in a scream.
Although police blamed the lead singer of “Burn” for the incident, claiming that he was using fireworks indoors, witnesses claim that nothing other than sparklers were used that night.
Substandard safety regulations like lack of alternative exits and one only small fire extinguisher present for the entire building, as well as lax attitude to building regulations, contributed to the death toll.
66 people died as a result of the Santika club fire, and 222 were injured.
The letters from the sign on the front of the building were burned away, all but two, the letters “KA”, which, morbidly, is the word for “kill” in Thai.

The final wave:

Seattle native, Christian Pilet, a member of the ABWE, was doing relief work in Thailand after the 2004 tsunami devastated the Khao Lak tourist town of Thailand, when he found a damaged digital camera.
He discarded the camera but kept the memory card and uploaded the files to his computer.
After searching a missing persons website he recognized the couple as a Canadian couple, John and Jackie Knill, and upon return to the US drove from Seattle to Vancouver to hand over the memory card to the couples sons.
The last photo on the camera shows the wave just before it hits the beach.

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Where is Zebb Quinn?

Zebb Quinn has been missing since the 2nd of January 2000. He was 18 years old at the time of his disappearance and resided in Ashville, North Carolina where he worked at a Wal-Mart.
At 9pm, after what would be Zebb’s final shift, a surveillance camera recorded Quinn approaching the parking lot, where he met a friend, Robert Jason Owens.
The two drove off in their separate vehicles with the intention of going to view a car that he was thinking about purchasing.

Further down the road, fifteen minutes later, a gas station surveillance camera captured what would be the last living image of Zebb Quinn.
Owens claims that Zebb signaled for him to pull over and said that he had to respond to an urgent page that he had received, and proceeded to make a call at a pay phone booth. Acting paranoid, he said he suddenly had to go and rear-ended Owens vehicle with his own while speeding away.

Some hours later, Robert Owens was treated at a hospital for a head injury and fractured ribs. He claimed he had gotten into a second car accident that night, however failed to file a report about the incident with the police.

The pager call was traced back to Quinn’s aunt, Ina Ustich, which was registered to her home phone.
Quinn was not close to his aunt and had only began to recently communicate with her a week before his disappearance. When questioned, his aunt claimed to be at dinner with a woman named Tamara, who happened to be the mother of Quinn’s love interest, a girl named Misty. 
Misty’s allegedly abusive boyfriend, Wesley, was also claimed to be present. Ustich contacted the police that same night to report a break in. She said nothing had been stolen from the house, however she noticed that a few framed photographs were out of place.
According to Quinn’s parents, he referred to Misty as his girlfriend, and had done so for a few weeks up until his disappearance. Wesley had allegedly threatened Quinn but the couple denies any role in the missing teen’s case.  

A couple of days after Zebb Quinn had been reported missing; a man called the Wal-Mart where he worked, Claiming to be him and called in sick due to illness. The voice did not match that of Quinn’s and was traced back the Volvo plant where Owen’s worked. He admitted to being the person who placed the call and said he was doing it as a favor to his friend.

Two weeks passed before Zebb Quinn’s car showed up parked outside of the hospital his mother worked at, indicating that it was put there by someone who knew the family. There was a live mixed Labrador puppy inside (which was later adopted by an investigator), a jacket that didn’t seem to belong to Quinn, a hotel key card that investigators could not trace back to the source, and various drink bottles.
There was a pair of lips drawn on the back window of the car.

Forensic testing of the evidence did not lead anywhere.
Fifteen years later Robert Jason Owens was arrested for the murder of Cristie Schoen, who was pregnant at the time, as well as the murder of her husband J.T Codd.

He is still a person of interest in the disappearance of Zebb Quinn.

(Sources: Wikipedia, charley project, )