“A DEMON MADE ME DO IT” and More Dark But True Tales! #WeirdDarkness

A DEMON MADE ME DO IT” and More Dark But True Tales! #WeirdDarkness

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IN THIS EPISODE: “The devil made me do it.” It’s an excuse that has been used so often by so many that it has lost its meaning, and its effectiveness. So only a fool or a madman would commit a horrible act and then try to blame it on the devil or a demon… unless, of course, that person truly believes that is exactly what happened to them. (A Demon Made Me Do It) *** The little Norwegian village of Bærum Verk still stands as an old foundry settlement, and is an active place, both as a place to work, and as a place to live – and as a place to keep living even after you’re dead. (The Most Haunted Village in Norway) *** When John and Eva were married they told their relatives that they planned to honeymoon on the Atlantic coast, but John had another plan, and it would not be his last deception. But it would be the first act in what ended up being a mystery that has still gone unsolved to this day. (The Lawrenceburg Shanty-Boat Mystery) *** There are more than a few stories from upright citizens around the world who claim to have seen tiny humans. I’m not talking about the diminutive human beings we used to classify as dwarves or midgets until we became more enlightened. I’m talking about short, maybe two-foot tall, perfectly proportioned people. (Big Stories About Little People) *** Weirdo family member James Pierce brings a true story that he calls, “It Came Through the Screen Door”.

Find a full or partial transcript at the bottom of this blog post.

“God, Ghosts, and Aliens” Weird DarkCHURCH Afterword: https://youtu.be/QV7y1OqAEAU
“Plague Weddings” episode with bloopers at end: https://weirddarkness.com/archives/6741

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“The Genesis of Geraldine” by David Jeremiah for Light Source: https://tinyurl.com/y7t7nuwx
“A Demon Made Me Do It” by Jacob Shelton for Ranker: https://tinyurl.com/y2qedyjq, and Orrin Grey for The Line Up: https://tinyurl.com/yb8e6z25
“The Most Haunted Village in Norway” from Moon Mausoleum: https://tinyurl.com/ya8nuxur
“The Lawrenceburg Shanty-Boat Mystery” by Robert Wilhelm for Murder By Gaslight: https://tinyurl.com/yyod3q3j
“Big Stories About Little People” by Nick Redfern for Mysterious Universe: https://tinyurl.com/ycql47wq
“It Came Through the Screen Door” by Weirdo family member James Pierce
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When Clerow Wilson turned 16, he was ready to get out of foster homes and reform school, so he lied about his age and joined the U.S. Air Force. Blessed with a non-stop personality, he entertained fellow airmen with so many funny stories they claimed he was “flipped out.” The name stuck. Leaving the Air Force, “Flip” Wilson found work as a bellhop and started performing between paid acts at the hotel’s stage show. Before long he was a successful comedian. One of Flip’s most popular characters was Geraldine Jones, whom he portrayed in a dress, a copper-colored wig, and with exaggerated facial expressions. Geraldine was constantly misbehaving, crossing the line, and violating her conscience. But she had a one-sentence explanation for her behavior: “The devil made me do it.” The phrase, “The devil made me do it,” became part of entertainment lore.

I wonder why. On its surface, it’s not a particularly funny line. Perhaps it struck our funny bones because it struck a nerve. We know we’re naughty deep down inside. We’re bewildered at how easily we do wrong and how hard it is to do right. We need a rationale for our bad habits, or at least an excuse. It’s as good an excuse as any. In some way, this tagline became an expression of national self-justification: “The devil made me do it.” But the line is not always uttered in jest. Here in the real world, away from the comedy club stage and TV cameras, there has been many a time when a heinous crime was committed, and the one who committed the act was the devil himself.

I’m Darren Marlar and this is Weird Darkness.

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Welcome, Weirdos – this is Weird Darkness. Here you’ll find stories of the paranormal, supernatural, legends, lore, crime, conspiracy, mysterious, macabre, unsolved and unexplained.

While you’re listening, you might want to check out the Weird Darkness website. At WeirdDarkness.com you can find transcripts of the episodes, paranormal and horror audiobooks I’ve narrated, streaming video of Horror Hosts and classic horror movies, plus you can visit the “Hope In The Darkness” page if you are struggling with depression, anxiety, or thoughts of suicide. You can also shop the Weird Darkness Store for podcast merchandise, and 100% of all profits I make from the store are donated to the International Foundation for Research and Education on Depression. You can find all of that and more at WeirdDarkness.com.

Coming up in this episode of Weird Darkness…

The little Norwegian village of Bærum Verk still stands as an old foundry settlement, and is an active place, both as a place to work, and as a place to live – and as a place to keep living even after you’re dead.

When John and Eva were married they told their relatives that they planned to honeymoon on the Atlantic coast, but John had another plan, and it would not be his last deception. But it would be the first act in what ended up being a mystery that has still gone unsolved to this day.

There are more than a few stories from upright citizens around the world who claim to have seen tiny humans. I’m not talking about the diminutive human beings we used to classify as dwarves or midgets until we became more enlightened. I’m talking about short, maybe two-foot tall, perfectly proportioned people.

Weirdo family member James Pierce brings a true story that he calls, “It Came Through the Screen Door”.

But first… “The devil made me do it.” It’s an excuse that has been used so often by so many that it has lost its meaning, and its effectiveness. So only a fool or a madman would commit a horrible act and then try to blame it on the devil or a demon… unless, of course, that person truly believes that is exactly what happened to them.

Now.. bolt your doors, lock your windows, turn off your lights, and come with me into the Weird Darkness!

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Supposedly “demon-possessed” criminals have been around for as long as people have been murdering their wives, sexually assaulting young people, or gunning down strangers in the street. Some criminals seem to use this as a calculated excuse for their actions, while others (usually suffering from mental illness, drug addiction, or both) seem to truly believe they were under demonic control when they performed their evil acts. One of the most famous cases of a demon committing crimes involves the serial killer David Berkowitz (also known as the Son of Sam), who claimed a demon inhabiting the body of his neighbor’s dog compelled him to walk the streets of New York for an entire year, firing indiscriminately at anyone who was hanging out in a parked car after dark. If you’ve ever been curious about demonic possession, or want to get the inside scoop on some of the most vile acts ever committed by the “possessed,” say the Lord’s Prayer, say a blessing over whatever you’re drinking and hope it becomes holy, and keep listening. You’re about to hear about some of the most heinous crimes supposedly committed by demons.

After Uber driver Jason Brian Dalton went on a shooting spree, killing six people in the early hours of February 21, 2016, people wondered what could drive a man to commit such heinous murders. Money? Revenge? It turned out the real reason was something much more insidious. Dalton told detectives that the Uber app on his iPhone had taken over his mind and forced him to commit murder. A detective for the case said: “Dalton [explained] how when he opens up the Uber taxi app a symbol appeared and he recognized that symbol as the Eastern Star symbol. Dalton acknowledged that he recognized the Uber symbol as being that of the Eastern Star and a devil head popped up on his screen and when he pressed the button on the app, that is when all the problems started.” But it’s not just that the app-demon forced him to kill – it also helped him get from place to place in a timely manner: “Dalton explained how you can drive over 100 mph and go through stop signs and you can just get places. Dalton said he wishes he would never have spoken what that symbol was when he saw it on his phone. Dalton described the devil figure as a horned cow head or something like that and then it would give you an assignment and it would literally take over your whole body.”

New York City during the summer of 1976 was a hotbed of anger, frustration, and fear, and David Berkowitz (AKA “the Son of Sam”) didn’t help the matter by killing six people and wounding seven others in the span of one year. After his arrest, Berkowitz told police that he was under the control of a demon named “Harvey” who inhabited his neighbor’s dog and implored him to kill people. Once, during a three-month break from his murder spree, Berkowitz wrote the New York Post to say, “I am still here like a spirit roaming the night. Thirsty, hungry, seldom stopping to rest.” After being incarcerated (Berkowitz received a sentence of 365 years in prison), he became a born-again Christian, but he still believes that the devil and god are fighting for possession of his soul.

Pazuzu Algarad was arrested in 2014 for killing a person and then burying the body in his backyard in July 2009, as well as helping his girlfriend bury someone she killed later that year. He had taken the name “Pazuzu” in reference to a demon mentioned in The Exorcist, and he had a forked tongue and sharpened teeth. An anonymous man who lived at the home where the bodies were buried told police that he felt Pazuzu was possessed: “It was very serpentine. And his eyes would kind of get a little, like, glazy. Like almost not there, like the inner part of him would kind of phase away. You could tell when his demons needed something from him, because they took over… About once a month, and it was usually on a full moon, they sacrificed at least one rabbit, and then he would eat the heart of it, and then burn the flesh of the rabbit.” Investigators on the scene later deemed the home (the site of many animal sacrifices) as unsafe for human life.

In 1974, Michael Taylor was just a simple butcher living in Ossett, England, who was suddenly overcome by an evil spirit. He had an exorcism performed on October 5th and 6th of 1974, and while it went okay, the priests weren’t able to expel all the demons. According to Bill Ellis, an authority on folklore and the occult in contemporary culture, “In an all-night ceremony… [the exorcists believed they had] invoked and cast out at least forty demons, including those of incest, bestiality, blasphemy, and lewdness. At the end, exhausted, they allowed Taylor to go home, although they felt that at least three demons – insanity, murder, and violence – were still left in him.” So you know, the big three. After he returned home, Taylor immediately murdered his wife by ripping out her eyes and tongue, then tearing off most of the skin from her face, finally strangling their pet poodle. Police found Taylor standing in the street naked and covered in blood shouting, “It is the blood of Satan.”

In 2012, after living in what they believed to be a demon-possessed house and becoming convinced that the world was ending, Deborah and Adolfo Gomez admitted to restraining their children (ages 7 and 5) with duct tape inside an SUV in a Walmart parking lot because they were “demon-possessed.” The couple was arrested in Lawrence, Kansas, where investigators learned that not only was the couple under demonic possession, but Adolfo had not slept for the last nine days. So maybe that had something to do with it.

In March 2016, 17-year-old Tommy Smith attempted to rob Peter Churm, a 66-year-old man, for the keys to his son’s Range Rover. When Churm refused to hand the keys over, Smith flew into a rage and stabbed Churn in the face, neck, and ears. The teenage boy stabbed the old man so fiercely that the knife actually broke in two. Churm ended the attack by bashing Smith in the head with a claw hammer. Smith, a diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic, later told a psychiatrist that he was magnetically drawn towards his victim, and that he saw a demon float out of Churm’s wounds when he attacked him.

According to Reverend Cecil Begbie, South African Aljar Swartz was possessed by demons when he strangled a Ravensmead teenager to death before beheading him and leaving his body in an abandoned school in October 2013. Swartz claimed that he had become possessed by a vague collection of “Satanic attacks,” but he never went into further detail. Allegedly after beheading his victim, he’d intended to sell the man’s head to a traditional healer called a sangoma. Reverend Bigbie did his best to help out Swartz and instructed church groups all over Africa to pray for Bigbie on the Good Friday following Swartz’s incarceration. Swartz said that when the collective prayer was held, he felt that he was standing under a waterfall with pure, clean water flowing through his body. He claims he is no longer possessed by demons – however, the courts have stated they will not mitigate his sentence based on his supposed “recovery.”

Jason Nelson, a 32-year-old English man, claimed to be under the spell of a demon when he went on a “spree of violence,” raping a woman, attempting to rape her daughter, and then murdering Jordan Maguire after inviting the man into his home to sell marijuana.

This case is a little opaque due to the lack of verifiable facts, it seems that in 2015, while Reverend Connery Dagadu was attempting to perform a multiple-day-long cleansing ceremony on Roland Zinneh of Darby, Pennsylvania, he was strangled to death by Zinneh, who then immediately ran outside and started beating on a minivan with a shovel. First responders noted that Zinneh seemed to be dancing when they arrived on the scene, and when they tackled him to the ground and slapped him in cuffs, he allegedly began shouting, “I kill demons!” Which is confusing because we thought he was the guy who was possessed by demons.

Luis Zambrano, 30, was sentenced to 26 1/2 years in prison for the murder of his girlfriend Angie Escobar by stabbing her over 80 times with a pair of scissors. After she died, he shoved her into the trunk of his car. He told a judge that he was under demonic possession when he killed Escobar, but that there were also “trust issues” at play in the gruesome murder.

On April 29, 2016, two police officers responded to a phone call about a man screaming and yelling in the street and found a man who proceeded to give one of the officers a piece of his mind (“like he knew him from high school”) before biting the other on the hand.  Pamela Fornett, the biter’s wife, told WTKR, “I apologize to those police officers about what happened, but I begged them, ‘Please, don’t shoot my husband.'”  The officers did not shoot him, but were able to take him into custody. He is believed to be mentally ill. Fornett later said that her husband had been possessed by a demon. “I caught it on camera,” she said. “A demon – it really was, so I figured that’s what got in him.”

Noor Walile, a 38-year-old English imam, raped a boy in the bathroom of the church where he was giving lessons. When the elders of the mosque found out what had happened, Walile simply said that the devil made him do it. The elders told Walile that his choices were to face the police in England or to return forever to his native India. Walile fled to escape persecution from the police, but later secretly returned to Leicester, where he was promptly arrested and slammed with a rape charge.

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Quite possibly the most famous of all demon-caused-crime cases is Arne Cheyenne Johnson. So well known, in fact, he’s being immortalized in “The Conjuring” movie franchise this September. That story is up next.

Plus, we’ll take a look at the most haunted village in Norway, when Weird Darkness returns.


Our next Weirdo Watch Party is a DOUBLE-HEADER, with a watch party two nights in a row! This coming Friday, June 26th horror hostess Arachna from Beware Theater brings us “The Ape Man” from 1943 starring Bela Lugosi! And then this Saturday June 27th, horror host Octavian Hallow presents 1973’s Rock-and-Roll horror, “Son of Dracula” starring Harry Nillson and Ringo Starr! The Weirdo Watch Party is ALWAYS FREE, it’s ALWAYS FUN, and it promotes different horror hosts and lets them know that we appreciate what they do!  Again, this Friday June 26th it’s Arachna hosting 1943’s “The Ape Man”, and then this Saturday June 27th it’s Octavian Hallow hosting the 1973 rock-and-roll horror flick, “Son of Dracula”! The Weirdo Watch Party both nights starts at 7:00pm Pacific, 8:00pm Mountain, 9:00pm Central, 10:00pm Eastern on the Weirdo Watch Party page at WeirdDarkness.com!

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Quite possibly the most famous of all demon-caused-crime cases is Arne Cheyenne Johnson. The twisted story of Arne Cheyenne Johnson, also known as ‘The Devil Made Me Do It’ case, comes directly from the case files of demonologists Ed and Lorraine Warren. You might recognize the controversial ghost hunters from “The Conjuring” movie franchise, where the real-life couple is played by Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga. While the various spin-offs of the franchise have gone in more overtly fictional directions, the core titles have stuck closer to their “inspired by true events” log line: 2013’s The Conjuring covers the haunting of the Perron family, while 2016’s The Conjuring 2 centers on the Amityville horror and the Enfield poltergeist.

The third installment – scheduled for release in September of 2020 – looks to be no exception. For the new movie, titled “The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It”, filmmakers are digging into the case of Arne Cheyenne Johnson, the first known person in America to attempt to use demonic possession as a defense plea in a murder trial.

On February 16, 1981, Johnson, then 19 years old, stabbed his landlord several times with a five-inch pocket knife. It was the first murder on the books in the 193-year history of Brookfield, Connecticut. According to Johnson, however, while his was the hand that held the knife, the murder was committed by a demonic force that had overcome him.

For Johnson’s victim, the story ended there. But for Johnson and the Warrens, it had started months earlier, when 11-year-old David Glatzel allegedly had a strange encounter. Glatzel’s older sister, Debbie, was Johnson’s fiancée. David Glatzel, Debbie Glatzel, and Johnson were cleaning up a rental property when David told them that an old man had appeared, pushing and threatening him.

At first, the couple wrote it off as a kid trying to get out of doing his chores, but David remained adamant. The odd sightings not only continued—they increased in both frequency and intensity. At night, David would wake up sobbing, describing visitations by a “man with big black eyes, a thin face with animal features and jagged teeth, pointed ears, horns and hoofs.”

The Glatzels asked a priest from nearby St. Joseph’s Catholic Church to bless their home, but David’s frightening encounters continued unabated. Over the next few months, he gained 60 pounds in rapid succession, and family members had to sit up with him through the night. David would suddenly jerk awake at all hours to hiss, growl, speak in strange voices, and “suddenly begin reciting passages from the Bible or from Milton’s Paradise Lost.” His nocturnal visitor also began making daytime appearances, during which it took on the more innocuous shape of “an old man with a white beard, dressed in a flannel shirt and jeans.”

In desperation, the family called upon self-styled demonologists Ed and Lorraine Warren. When the couple first interviewed the family, Lorraine reported seeing “a black, misty form next to [David], which told me we were dealing with something of a negative nature.”

During the course of David’s possession, the Warrens had feared that they were “sitting on a powder keg.” In October of 1980, the Warrens contacted the Brookfield police and warned them that the situation was growing increasingly dangerous. “David made numerous references to murder and stabbings,” Lorraine claimed.

David complained of being choked and hit by invisible hands, and witnesses reported that red marks appeared spontaneously on his body. As the situation worsened, the Warrens claimed to have been present at “three lesser exorcisms” in an attempt to rid the boy of whatever dark spirit was troubling him. Four priests from St. Joseph’s were said to have been in attendance.

During these “lesser exorcisms,” David purportedly levitated, ceased breathing, and gave the names of the 43 demons that were possessing him. In desperation, Arne Cheyenne Johnson, who was present at the exorcisms, demanded that the demons leave David alone and possess him instead.

After the exorcisms failed, Johnson was in a car accident during which he claimed that a demon took control of his vehicle and forced him off the road and into a tree. He was unharmed, but determined to do something to try to put an end to the demonic activity.

According to an episode of the Discovery Channel series A Haunting, which aired in August of 2006, there was a well on the same rental property where all the trouble had started. The Warrens warned Johnson not to investigate the well, but after his car accident, he did just that. Johnson recalls making eye contact with the demon in the depths of the well. According to Johnson, this was the last time that he was completely lucid until after the murder.

Shortly thereafter, Debbie Glatzel and Arne Cheyenne Johnson moved out of the Glatzel home, which was becoming unbearable. Debbie had been hired by Alan Bono as a dog groomer at the Brookfield Pet Motel, and the couple also rented a nearby apartment from Bono. But Debbie began to fear that they had brought David’s demons with them. Johnson, who had played Little League and sang in the church choir when he was younger, would “growl and say he saw the beast,” Debbie recalled. “Later he would have no memory of it. It was just like David.”

On February 16, 1981, Johnson called in sick to work and joined Debbie at the Brookfield Pet Motel. Bono took them all out to lunch at a local bar, where he apparently drank heavily. Later in the day, there was an altercation, at which point Johnson stabbed Bono repeatedly while “growling like an animal.”

When it came time for the trial, Martin Minnella, Johnson’s attorney, attempted to enter a plea of “not guilty by reason of demonic possession.” While this was the first time such a plea had been attempted in the United States, Minnella cited two cases in England where similar pleas had been used—although neither case ever went to trial.

Lorraine Warren agreed that Johnson had been possessed at the time of the murder, and Minnella planned to fly in experts from Europe and subpoena the priests who had been involved in the exorcisms of David Glatzel—none of which ultimately came to pass. Robert Callahan, the presiding judge in the case, rejected the plea, arguing that such a defense would be impossible to prove, and that testimony on the subject was irrelevant and unscientific.

Ultimately, Johnson’s legal team entered a plea of self-defense. However, the jury was not persuaded of his innocence. On November 24, 1981, Johnson was convicted of first-degree manslaughter and sentenced to 10-20 years in prison, though he served only five. Upon his release, he married Debbie Glatzel.

The bizarre events surrounding Alan Bono’s murder were published in a book called The Devil in Connecticut, written by Gerald Brittle in collaboration with Lorraine Warren. The case was later dramatized in a TV movie called The Demon Murder Case, which premiered on NBC in March of 1983. The movie featured Andy Griffith and a very young Kevin Bacon playing the role of the possessed boy who, in the movie version, goes on trial for murder.

In 2006, The Devil in Connecticut was re-released, prompting David’s older brother, 42-year-old Carl Glatzel, to sue Gerald Brittle, Lorraine Warren, and the William Morris Agency, who owned the rights to the book. According to Carl Glatzel, his brother David suffered from mental illness and had been exploited by the Warrens. The book also painted Carl as a villain, “simply because I had a sane voice and knew the story was false since the beginning.”

Carl isn’t the only one to cast aspersions on the Warrens’ account of what happened to the Glatzel family. While Father Nicholas Grieco of the diocese of Bridgeport did concede that David’s case was investigated by the church, he denied that any exorcism was performed. As for the priests who were supposedly present for the rituals, they weren’t talking, and were transferred to other parishes after the ordeal.

So did Arne Cheyenne Johnson really believe that he was possessed by demons, or was it just an excuse to distance himself from his deplorable actions? We will likely never know what happened in the small Connecticut town of Brookfield back in 1981—though the questions surrounding this chilling true crime case will certainly return come September 2020 with the release of “The Conjuring 3: The Devil Made Me Do It.”

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Norway is perhaps remembered as two things. Either as the savage Vikings, plundering Europe and beyond, or they are perhaps remembered as this rich oil country of today. Most often, perhaps not remembered at all, were it sits at the edge of the world. But few people know of the dark times in between. It was only in the 50’s and 60’s that the country grew in wealth, and before that, it was one of Europe poorest countries. So centuries with coldness, starvation and ghosts. The folk lore is still thriving and the ghosts of the past, lurking around the corners, in between the walls, and inside the houses and homes.

On a very un-scary place like Bærum Verk, a village in Norway, the quaint streets and not the most busy city life, we find one of the country’s most haunted place along the river and mountains were it is built. Between the old wooden walls of the ancient houses creeks the history from the many lives that walked through this place since it was first built in the 1600s when it was found iron ore there. The tales of the Bærum Verk are many. Dogs refuse to go into certain rooms There are steps and doors creaking. Doors that never wants to open.

Norway is not very known for their factory and mining skills, but at the birth of the industrial revolution, the mountains were hacked into, the waterfalls harvested to use as energy. The grouping of people changes, from being spread out on small farms and along the coast, they grouped together inland to work the land, hack into the mountains, train the water to make their bidding. Some of these communities are alive an thriving today, like at Bærum Verk were people still live and work, long after the iron foundry the settlement was founded on closed. And so does the ghosts of the past as well.

The legend wants to tell of the former owner, Conrad Clausen that hauntes the Verksgata (Verksstreet). At least he is one of them, and according to the workers and people living there, there are a lot of them.

Conrad was only a young guy when the whole place fell on his shoulders. He took over the iron foundry in 1773 at 18 years old. In those time, small villages for the workers was often built around foundry like this, a lot of them standing to this day. Clausen gave all of his life, his energy to the place were he lived and worked. Even if his life was going to be a very short one. Only at the age of 31 he died in the bedroom. The same bedroom now operating as a meeting room for people working there today, now the foundry is turned into a shopping mall.

Typical, isn’t it? A young man dies too soon, steps in the night, creeking of the doors. But perhaps the strangest with the haunting must be the phones.

It is the middle of the night. No one is at work, no one is there to answer the phones. Noe one is up to make a call to them. But still, they are ringing. The people employed in the offices of the shopping mall, where Clausen lived, claims that phones calls constantly during the night. To the same time, quarter past twelve or quarter past one. Depending if it is summer- or winter saving time.

It’s rumored that if you try to take the phone it will only answer with a strange beeping sound. Straight after the phone in the room next to will start calling. And then in the room next again. That is how it continues through the whole building.

Yes and? Why haven’t they just called the telephone company? Yes, they have, several times. But no one seems to be able to figure it out. The leader of the shopping mall, Gry Skådinn told the local newspaper that it was exacltey what the workers at the mall tried to.

“When we get into work in the morning, the whole switchboard is blinking away.

But when the telephone company comes to fix the whole thing and explain it all, only more questions rose.

“Before I started here, we found that the phone signals came from the lunch rooms. That was back in the day, the bedroom of Conrad Clausen, and were he died,” Skådinn says.

It is not the only reported ghost, haunting this settlement of iron workers. On the oldest tavern in the country, there are also been reported many cases of unusual happenings. Bærums verk has become somewhat of a cultural place. That is what the people planned at least when working at the tavern thought of when serving recipes based on old ones and classical Norwegian food. Perhaps that is contributing keeping the ghosts alive here. The buildings are protected and will remain as part of the cultural heritage, the smell of the food in the tavern, perhaps similar the one they used to eat when they themselves were alive. In any case, the strange occurrences, like the with the phones to the malls is happening all over the settlement.

So unusual in fact that several journalists, ghost tourists, paranormal investigators, mediums and the ghost hunter tv-show in Norway stopped by to get a glimpse of it. Most claim they did.

At the tavern for instance, the staff as well as the owners have had trouble dedaling with a green clothed woman, a very louded imagery in Norwegian culture.

“It’s just not practical working int the oldest tavern when a ghost in green clothes just walks around,” the owner, Ulla Laycock told the local newspaper. But she and her husband found away to work for their advantage though, as they noe published their book on the persistent hauntings of the place.

The local history team have identified the woman in green as a woman called Anna Krefting that still walks among the guests of the tavern as it fits with her period clcothes whe’s been observed in.

“There is a lot in the walls in this place, and it is important to take care of, the writer of the book, Caroline Paulsberg says.

It is however interesting how the locals and workers feel about living in the country’s most haunted place, or rather, haunted village. On their own facebook group, they claim that, yes, it is haunted, but they would like to keep them around. Most of people around haunted places would perhaps not feel the same way. But according to them, the ghosts are only nice, and they have the same right to be their as the living, having once themselvse lived and worked there.

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When Weird Darkness returns…

When John and Eva were married they told their relatives that they planned to honeymoon on the Atlantic coast, but John had another plan, and it would not be his last deception. But it would be the first act in what ended up being a mystery that has still gone unsolved to this day.

And there have been more than a few stories from people around the world claiming to have seen tiny humans; perfectly proportioned but a third of the size of a normal human man. What ARE people seeing?


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Now and again a story will surface that is so bizarre it’s difficult to know what to think of it. In this story, the subject-matter falls firmly into that particular category – in fact, there are several such stories, not just one. We’re talking about those who claim to have seen what can only be termed “little people.” I’ll let you, the listener, offer comments and suggestions on what might have been the cause of such tales. Frank Banner’s family tells of the time that Frank, in 1971, encountered a group of around fifteen strange, diminutive beings in the woods surrounding Trempealeau Mountain, Wisconsin, as he took a stroll with the family dog. According to Banner, as he walked along one particular track he suddenly developed a sense of being watched. He was.

Within seconds, a group of very human-looking, but only about two-feet-tall, creatures came out of the woods in front of Banner. Curiously, the dog did not act in a hostile fashion, but wagged its tail vigorously, as if it was greeting a bunch of old friends. Banner, however, was terrified by the sight of this strange band of mini-people – all of who were dressed in what Banner described as “primitive clothing.” The group did nothing more than smile at Banner, wave, and then continued on their way, into the woods on the other side of the track. Despite the fact that the family made jokes about Frank having met a tribe of pixies, until his dying day Banner believed he had encounter an extraterrestrial race of very human-like – albeit small – aliens. Of course, there is an important question to ask: if they were so advanced extraterrestrials, why were they dressed in “primitive clothing?” Oh well, moving on…

Dave Shaw’s experience in 1999 is another perfect example of high-strangeness. While walking through the woods surrounding Texas’ Lake Worth, saw a “little man” that raced past him at a very fast speed, and who was dressed in a yellow, one-piece outfit. “Little” is undeniably apt, as Shaw estimated that the “man” was between one-and-one-and-a-half-feet in height. The little man didn’t turn back to look at Shaw; he just carried on running, vanishing into the undergrowth. Alien, sprite, goblin? There is no answer to that question.

Adelaide, Australia was the site of a profoundly odd encounter reported by Samantha K, in September 1984. As she walked home from a late shift at the restaurant she worked for at the time, she almost stumbled into what she too described as a “little man.” He was about two feet tall, raced across the quiet road, was dressed in a silver, one-piece suit – and a large helmet. He vanished into a nearby alleyway. Sam says she was too amazed to be scared by the weird experience.

A similar saga comes from Janice Bakewell, who encountered a small UFO – as in extremely small – in Marlborough, Wiltshire, England in January 1977. Just like Frank Banner in 1971, Janice was walking through woods with her dog. It was early one morning when she heard a loud buzzing noise that quickly filled her ears – and clearly those of her dog, too. Puzzled, she looked around, but it was all to no avail – at least, for around two minutes. Then, everything became amazingly clear.

As if out of nowhere, a small flying saucer appeared before her, hovering at a height of around four feet off the ground, in a small clearing in the trees. It was circular in shape, silver in color, and had a red band around its middle. And, it was barely four-feet across. She watched, astonished, as the diminutive craft settled to the ground – in decidedly wobbly fashion – and a small door opened. Janice still recalls holding her breath, wondering what might happen next. She soon found out.

Out of the door flew three, three-to-four-inches-tall small humanoid figures: clearly female and glowing brightly, they fluttered around Janice for a minute or two, dressed in silvery mini-skirts! At one point the tiny trio landed on Janice’s right arm, smiled, then flew back into the craft, which shot away into the skies, never to be seen again. Bizarre? Yep! Theories, anyone?

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When John Keys and Eva Dickenson were married in Cincinnati on August 21, 1890, they told their relatives that they planned to honeymoon on the Atlantic coast, but John had another plan. He purchased an Ohio River shanty-boat and planned a slow trip downriver to St. Louis. It would not be their last deception; in fact, what transpired on that fateful journey would remain forever shrouded in mystery.
When the boat left Cincinnati, it was carrying four passengers. A friend of John’s whom he allegedly introduced to Eva as Billie Moore would be the cook on the trip. At the last minute, John also agreed to take his friend Bert Rusk, who had taken $115 from his mother and was afraid she was searching for him. John told Rusk to pose as his brother so it would not look so suspicious, one woman traveling with three men. John was 19 years old, Eva 17, the other two men were in their early twenties.

The boat left Cincinnati and traveled west on the Ohio River then docked near a group of shanty-boats in Lawrenceburg, Indiana. They remained there for several days then all four passengers disappeared, leaving behind the shanty-boat and all their furnishings.
Shanty-boats on the Ohio River would dock gunwale to gunwale and what went on in one boat would soon be known by all. Several witnesses had seen three men and a woman take a skiff from Keys’ boat to the Kentucky shore of the river. Shortly after, one man returned alone. The witnesses heard three gunshots and a scream then heard the man who returned, say, “Oh dear, my brother has shot his wife!”

When a body was found floating where Big Bone Creek fed into the Ohio River, it was assumed to be one of the four who had abandoned their shanty-boat. It was the corpse of a man, stark naked with a gunshot wound to the chest and a slit throat.
The body was hastily buried in an unmarked grave but later was exhumed for identification. It was first believed that the dead man was Burt Rusk, but when his sister and his uncle saw the corpse, they said it was not Rusk but Billy Fee. Fee, it turned out, often used the alias Moore—the dead man had been the cook of the shanty-boat.

Warrants were issued for the arrest of John and Eva Keys and Bert Rusk. In Cincinnati, the police located Eva Keys who claimed she did not know the whereabouts of Rusk or her husband. She told them of her “wedding tour” on the shanty-boat and confirmed that Billy Moore had been their cook, but she had never known anyone to call him Fee. She said the shots heard on the river were fired by her, practicing with a small rifle her husband owned; the shouting heard was her husband trying to scare her by jokingly pretending to be shot. She said that Moore had left them on Monday, and they suspected him of robbing them. Rusk had left them on Wednesday, bound for Cincinnati.
The warrant for Eva’s arrest had been requested by Billy’s brother Richard Fee who told a different story. He claimed that Eva had been the wife of his brother Billy. They both disappeared, and the next he heard of Eva she had married John Keys.
John Keys was arraigned in Lawrenceburg, Indiana and although several witnesses heard the gunshots on the fatal night, none could tell which side of the river they came from except Thomas South who said they came from the Kentucky side. The defense offered no evidence but moved for a dismissal for want of jurisdiction and Mayor O’Brien, who presided over the hearing, promptly dismissed the charges.
Officers from Petersburg, Kentucky asked Lawrenceburg to hold him until requisition could be secured from the governor, but the request was refused. Keys’ attorney said he would give himself up whenever the proper papers were presented.
Eva Keys was out on bail, in October John Keys was arrested again and Bert Rusk surrendered voluntarily. All three were charged jointly for the murder. Rusk’s attorney accused the Cincinnati Police of unscrupulous tactics to get him to confess, offering him whiskey to loosen his tongue and falsely telling him that the Keys had accused him of the murder. Rusk contended that he had nothing to confess. John Keys and Bert Rusk agreed to go voluntarily to Kentucky; Eva Keys was released on her own recognizance and was not expected to be extradited.
In January 1891, Burt Rusk went to authorities in Petersburg, Kentucky and, under oath, confessed to his role in the murder of Billy Fee. He said that on the night of the murder, all four had taken the skiff across the river to the Kentucky side, and John Keys sat with a 38-caliber revolver loaded and cocked in his hand. As soon as they got out of the skiff, Keys sent him back to the shanty-boat to get a trot-line for fishing. When he got to the shanty-boat, he heard three shots, heard Eva scream, and heard Fee exclaim, “Oh, Johnnie, for God’s sake, don’t kill me.”
That was when he said to Mrs. Corns, on a nearby shanty-boat, “My brother has killed his wife.”
Rusk rowed back across the river and saw Fee’s clothing saturated with blood. He asked Keys what happened, and Keys said:

“I have killed the (S.O.B.), damn him, he knew too much about me, and I have put him out of the way. He is not the first man I have killed, and if you ever say a word about him, I’ll kill you.”
Keys told him that he and Fee had “done up” a man in Newport, Kentucky and was afraid that Fee might give him away. He also said that Fee had courted his wife for two years before they were married and there was some bad blood over that.
When Rusk and the Keys returned to the shanty-boat, the met Thomas South who asked about the shooting. That was when Keys first told the story of Eva firing the rifle, and he trying to fool her into thinking he was shot. The next day the Keys took a train to St. Louis and Rusk went to Cincinnati. Following Keys’ orders, he sent a telegram to John Keys, in care of a third party in Lawrenceburg, to throw suspicion off of them, saying that Billy Fee had gone from Cincinnati to Richmond, Indiana.
In April 1891, John Keys was tried alone for the murder of William Fee. In his testimony, Keys told a different story of the night of the murder. He said that when they reached Lawrenceburg, Rusk claimed he was missing $40 and accused Fee of taking it. Fee denied it, and they continued to quarrel; twice Keys had to break up fistfights. Monday evening, they took the skiff to Kentucky and Rusk accompanied Fee to buy provisions to cook a meal. When they returned, they began fighting again. Suddenly three shots were fired, he heard two or three “Oh! Ohs!” then all was still. Eva began to scream, and Rusk came running, saying, “Stop that yelling or I’ll slap your mouth.”
John and Eva began to row away in the skiff, and Rusk called for them to wait. Rusk got in the boat while holding the hand of the naked corpse floating in the water. They rowed out to the middle of the river, Rusk still holding the hand, then when Rusk let him go and the body sank out of sight. Keys denied that Rusk or anyone else had rowed back to the boat alone.
The state had failed to secure any testimony beyond Bert Rusk’s, and there was little evidence beyond Rusk’s story and Keys’ story.  The jury returned a verdict of not guilty and John Keys was released.
The following August, Eva Keys filed suit for divorce citing cruelty and failure to provide. At that time, she said under oath that her husband and another man had murdered Billy Fee.

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Coming up…

Weirdo family member James Pierce brings us a true story of the strange and weird with a story he calls “It Came Through The Screen Door”.

Plus, we’ll step into the Chamber of Comments – and today, it comes with a Weird DarkChurch Afterword!


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This is a true story that occurred in rural Arkansas farming country in 1959. We had a hard scrabble 80 acre farm and we made a bare living from it along with our live stock. We kept chickens, hogs & some dairy cattle. I was 7 years old when this incident occurred and it has stuck with me all the days of my life. It was also a lasting memory of my dear Mother until she passed away. She told me that she thought of what happened on that summer afternoon almost every day. Later in life after I had grown up, when we were all alone I asked her ” Mom, just what was that that came through the screen door & into the kitchen that day so long ago”? All she could reply as she gazed at the floor was “I just don’t know Jimmy, I just don’t know. It was August 1959 & it was hot & humid in Arkansas. The sky was clear with very few clouds in the bright blue sky. My Father was out in the back 40 plowing to get ready to plant sugar cane to make a fine money crop of sorghum molasses. Mom knew he would be gone quite a while so she took out a cold Falstaff beer (my Father forbid alcohol) but she snuck a beer every great once in a while. She brought out the dominoes & we began to play at the kitchen table. It was hot so we had the back door open but the screen door was closed to let any breeze come through. The game was spirited & Mom was her usual “Ace” at the game & we gave each other the usual banter as each hand was passed when suddenly I saw Mom just freeze. She had dominoes in her hand, eyes staring at the table but she was just frozen. Then she said “Jimmy – Be still right now.” I knew she meant business & then I saw it too & I froze as well. It came “through” the screen door & floated into the kitchen at about 4 feet above the floor. Then it stopped stark still & you could feel that “it” was observing us! It was a ball of light between the size of a softball & a volley ball. It was bright but not overpoweringly bright. It shimmered but it had clearly defined edges. Then it started to move again. It “floated through the room some more & then got much closer to us & then froze again. I heard Mom say “Jimmy – You be still now you hear”? All I could muster was a weak “Yes Ma’am.” Once more I have got to say…this thing was checking us out – it was alive. It was a living, sentient being & I could clearly tell that it was analyzing us. It seemed like forever then the ball of light began to move again & I thanked God because by this time I was scared to death. It had gotten close to us last time & I was afraid that the next time it was going to actually touch us. As it slowly floated around the room it seemed to notice an electric clock on a new stove my Mother had just received. The ball of light circled the clock 2-3 times & then it made a high pitched ziiiiipppp type sound & a bright flash of light + burning smoke & the ball of light was gone! The clear plastic cover on the stove clock was melted & the clock never worked again. Mom & I did not say a word – we put up the dominoes, she poured out her beer & I left to go hunting & she went back to her chores. We were both Shell shocked over this event & did not speak of it for some time. We were just simple hillbilly folk trying to scratch out a living from these hills & when something like this happens it was totally out of our realm of understanding. I have told the story to several people & everyone says “ball lighting”. Maybe so, but there was not a rain cloud in the sky & I will swear on my Mother’s grave that this thing was ALIVE! It could sense our presence & it knew we were there & it was moving up to us checking us out: there is not a doubt in my mind. I think it was some kind of “plasma based” electric life form unknown to us. Remember: “There is always something weird in the darkness”.

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Here in the Chamber of Comments I answer your emails, comments, podcast reviews, letters I get in the mail, and more. You can find all of my contact information, postal address, and social media links on the CONTACT page at WeirdDarkness.com. While you’re there, join the Facebook Group, “Weird Darkness Weirdos” and hang out with me and the rest of our Weirdo family! Or drop me an email anytime at: darren@weirddarkness.com.

(YouTube comment from Arkives TheTurth): I have a Darren Marlar Weird Darkness Playlist. I Accidentally Put One Of The Weird Darkness Shows In My Bible Study Playlist. I Got Yelled At. In All Caps…

REPLY: Ha ha ha!! Well, don’t worry, Arkives! God forgives. And if your Bible study pals don’t forgive you, they aren’t very godly. Still, that’s hilarious.

(YouTube comment from ZombieSauce regarding the Plague Weddings episode): Great episode, Darren. better beware of those blague weddings. This episode’s bloopers were the funniest yet.) This comment is brought to you by the number D.

REPLY: Glad you like the bloopers, Zombie! Some day I just cannot get my mouth to cooperate, and while that’s frustrating for me, it becomes a little bonus for you at the end of that episode! As for your comment being sponsored by the Number D, how does that work? That’s like trying to smell the color nine.

(Email from Francois): Hello Darren, I hope this message finds you well. I really wanted to send you a note of support. I have been listening for 3 months now. I love Weird Darkness, and appreciate what you do.

You see, this podcast could not be a better fit for myself. When I was about 10 years old (I’m in my late 30s now), I witnessed something bizarre that I have never been able to understand or explain, but I have also never forgotten it. Ever since then, I have had an interest in the paranormal, the unbelievable, extraterrestrials, and pretty much everything else that your podcast seems to feature. I am also Catholic, and growing up I was never sure if my interests in the “weird” were really compatible with my beliefs as a Catholic / Christian. Most people around me always reinforced that uncertainty: apparently one could not believe in God, and also in ghosts and aliens. Your podcast confirms to me that yes these interests and beliefs really can coexist. It also confirms to me that I am not alone. I’ve always wondered why aliens couldn’t also be created by God. It’s more than just that, though. I myself occasionally suffer from anxiety, and I love how openly and respectfully you treat mental illness. I also have trouble sleeping, and the best remedy for this has been to listen to late-night radio talk shows (usually Coast to Coast AM). But live radio shows are too inflexible for me, not to mention that there is a frequent risk of politics driving the entire conversation. So I decided to search for something new, and sample a few podcasts. After a few that weren’t quite what I was looking for, I discovered Weird Darkness. The most recent episode at the time was The Witch of Plum Hollow. Before I knew it, I was listening to a second episode. Don’t worry though, when I do fall asleep listening to Weird Darkness, I simply listen to the episode again the next morning while working from home. Also I have been sleeping extremely well since incorporating Weird Darkness into my nightly routine. One day, maybe soon, I would love to submit my accounts of the bizarre events I have witnessed growing up, and that I later learned that my parents also witnessed before I was even born. Sincerely, Francois (PS – I love the music in the background. When I started listening, you seemed to get a few comments about the music, and for whatever it is worth, I think it does really make your podcast feel unique. I also completely understand how this helps protect your work from being stolen and reused without your consent.)

REPLY: Thanks for the incredibly well-thought out and open email, Francois – I appreciate that. Sounds like you and I could be brothers for much of what we’ve been through – right down to growing up Catholic and listening to podcasts in order to get to sleep! I’m glad you found the podcast and that you find it’s not only entertaining, but actually beneficial to your lifestyle – that’s great to hear. As for growing up in the church and believing in God while also believing in the paranormal, I think it might be time for another Weird DarkChurch Afterword. Like the previous one, it gets religious so I won’t include it in the podcast, but I will leave a link to it in the show notes so you can listen to it on YouTube. It’s titled simply “God, Ghosts, and Aliens”.

I’ll answer more of your emails, comments, and more next time! Again, you can find all of my social media, email address, and other contact information on the CONTACT page at WeirdDarkness.com.

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If you made it this far, welcome to the Weirdo Family! Please share a link to this episode in your social media to help spread the word about the podcast, and if you could, please recommend Weird Darkness to your friends, family, and co-workers who love the paranormal, horror stories, or true crime! Maybe they’ll become a Weirdo family member too! And I’d greatly appreciate you leaving a review in the podcast app you listen from, that helps the podcast get noticed! And thanks in advance for doing so!

Do you have a dark tale to tell of your own? Fact or fiction, click on “Tell Your Story” at WeirdDarkness.com and I might use it in a future episode.

All stories in Weird Darkness are purported to be true (unless stated otherwise), and you can find source links or links to the authors in the show notes.

“The Genesis of Geraldine” by David Jeremiah for Light Source

“A Demon Made Me Do It” by Jacob Shelton for Ranker and Orrin Grey for The Line Up

“The Most Haunted Village in Norway” from Moon Mausoleum

“The Lawrenceburg Shanty-Boat Mystery” by Robert Wilhelm for Murder By Gaslight

“Big Stories About Little People” by Nick Redfern for Mysterious Universe

“It Came Through the Screen Door” by Weirdo family member James Pierce

Weird Darkness theme by Alibi Music.

WeirdDarkness™ – is a registered trademark. Copyright ©Weird Darkness 2020.

If you’d like a transcript of this episode, you can find a link in the show notes.

Now that we’re coming out of the dark, I’ll leave you with a little light… 1 Peter 3:14 = “But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. Do not fear their threats; do not be frightened.”

And a final thought… Don’t sit back and let things happen to you. Go out and happen to things.

I’m Darren Marlar. Thanks for joining me in the Weird Darkness.


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