Case Files: The Beginning
Updated: Oct 10, 2022
I began my journey into the paranormal and ghost investigations as a young, and dumb teenager, full of wonder and excitement. Watching movies like The Frighteners, and The Ghostbusters provided fuel for my imagination. In the late 1990’s, there few paranormal TV shows. The closest interaction with the paranormal was Coast to Coast AM, Montel Williams with Sylvia Browne, Miss Cleo, John Edward, and Peter James. They deemed themselves psychics that could speak with the dead! Even during casual discussions of what we did in paranormal investigating, one had to gauge the person to whom they were talking. Paranormal investigators often got the cold shoulder, in conversation. It was a different world at that time, yet I was eager for the adventure!
In August of 1998, a friend lived in a duplex. The next door in the duplex, experienced a murder suicide in the Vitchell family during the 1970’s. Coincidentally, my family (father and uncle) held ties, not only to the house, but also the brothers involved in the situation. My cousin Chris was named after Chris Vitchell. He and I, along with a handful of friends, got together in an organized manner, to investigate the house. At the time, I participated in law enforcement involving investigation techniques and actual police work in the town. With this background, the thought of investigating the unknown was fascinating as well as exciting for me. I created a group called Paranormal Spiritual Investigations or PSI. We put together our own logo, even had a GeoCities website! For the time period, we put together a nice arsenal of tape recorders, 35mm cameras, and talcum powder (for ghostly footprints).
The story of the Vitchell tragedy relates that Vincent Vitchell, in May 1974, came home angry after going to court earlier that day. He had hoped his brother Christopher would testify on his behalf, yet Chris never appeared in court causing a fight between the brothers. Tragically, the argument ended when Chris shot Vincent with a small caliber weapon in the third-floor bedroom. Vincent was pronounced dead at the scene. Chris, fraught with guilt and anxiety after shooting his brother, fled. He drove to the town next-door, where his mother lived. Upon hearing what he had done, his mother shunned him, causing Chris to spiral out of control. He then walked down the street where he committed suicide on the corner outside his mother’s house.
There were always reported disturbances in the house, even reported civil disturbances from the inhabitants of the connecting duplex house. Our team was granted exclusive access into the house, since it was up for sale, and the house was vacant. This is where the adventure began! We went into the Vitchell case with a mission to document and try to find any residual or intelligent activity in the house. We also brought in a favorite tune of the boys “Whipping Post” by The Allman Brothers Band to activate any activity.
One of the biggest pieces of evidence out of all the data, was taken with a 35mm SLR Camera, with Fujifilm Superia Venus 800 Film. It was a large orb in the hallway halfway through an open door. While I realize there is a lot of controversy surrounding orb evidence, the placement of the orb straddling a doorway was positive evidence of paranormal activity. Other than that, we recorded low EMF readings in the 2nd Floor Bedroom, and whispers in the same room. We also heard recordings of doors slamming on our mini-cassette recorder while we were gone and away from the house.
Even though this case did not produce massive amounts of evidence, the data collection, the investigation, and the quest to find the unknown fueled my passions for over 20 years! It was all a roller coaster after that!
If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, please log onto https://afsp.org/ or call 988 for the suicide crisis line.