Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Amityville Horror or Amityville Hoax?

       Various novels, documentaries, and major motion pictures have been created based upon the events that took place on 112 Ocean Avenue, Amityville in Long Island, New York. The paranormal events took place during the time that George and Kathy Lutz, along with Kathy's three kids and their dog, lived there, and they moved into the home in 1975. Thirteen months prior to the Lutz's buying the house and beginning to move in, Ronald DeFeo Jr. shot and killed all members of his family in their sleep. Two days after, he admitted to committing the murders. This is inarguable fact, as should be the non-fiction novel written about their experiences while living in the colonial style home, yet the truth of the novel has been questioned.
       Here are some experiences as described in the book:
- The Lutz children began sleeping on their stomachs, the same way that the murdered children were found.
- George began drinking at The Witches' Brew, a bar near his home where Ronald DeFeo Jr. used to go regularly. George realized that he strongly resembled the murderer.
- George woke at 3:15 AM every day to check the boathouse; he later discovered that this was around the time that the murders had been committed.
- One of George's friends, upon hearing the history of the house, insisted that they have it blessed. When Father Pecoraro sprayed the first drop of holy water, a loud male voice told him to "get out".
- Doors, windows, and locks in the house were damaged by unseen forces.
       Here are some of the controversies regarding the contents of the book:
- Ronald DeFeo Jr. was a regular at Henry's Bar; there was no bar in Amityville called The Witches' Brew.
- In at affidavit, Father Pecoraro stated that his only contact with the Lutzes was through telephone. There have also been accounts which claim that he did visit the house but nothing unusual took place. In an on-camera interview (in which his face was obscured to preserve his anonymity) he admitted that during his visit to the Lutz's house, he heard a voice saying "Get out". In this same interview, he also said that he felt a slap on his face during the visit and subsequent blistering on his hands. These inconsistent stories bring the honesty of Father Pecoraro into question.
- Jim and Barbara Cromarty, who bought the house in March of 1977, claimed that the locks, doors, and windows were not damaged and they appeared to be the original items that weren't repaired.
       There have been many accustions and lawsuits regarding the portrayal of the events that may or may not have occurred in the Lutz's home. To know which side is true, to decide what to believe, you would have to either trust a novel that was not written by the actual victims of the haunting, or trust people outside of the home who argue against the Lutz's claims. The detail of events in the novel may seem illogical or impossible, but does everything always make sense? Perhaps, some things simply cannot be explained.

112 Ocean Ave. 1970's

112 Ocean Ave. Modern Day

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