Over a five month period, knives, broken glass, lids, bottles and many other objects were thrown about in a house at Humpty Doo, NT, Australia. The picture above shows an assortment of the objects, collected after being hurled by an apparent poltergeist.
The story became big news, and many investigators attempted to solve the case.
One theory was that the spirit of a man who was still living was responsible. Another was that it was the spirit of a recently deceased friend.
The ‘Humpty Doo Poltergeist’
We have taken a good look at buildings that have been haunted by the spirits of people long past, but can a house be haunted by the spirit of someone who is still alive? For five months in 1998, a small collection of family and friends were terrified by events that took place in their rented bungalow, in the town of Humpty Doo, 40kms south-east of Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia.
The ‘Humpty Doo Poltergeist’, as it became known, was at the time one of the most well reported cases of a haunting in Australia. News crews, journalists, investigators and priests all entered the house with a skeptical mindset, but the events that took place around them swayed their beliefs. Unfortunately, as was the case with UK’s ‘Enfield Poltergeist’ some twenty years earlier, this ‘spirit’ did not like to be caught on film.
Only a few pieces of evidence were gathered on tape as they took place, the spirit preferring to act when the cameras were facing away, or had been turned off completely. Sometimes, as would seem is the case with such events, electrical gear would malfunction, making the attempt to capture evidence even more frustrating.
The activity was generally limited to acts of physical force, regardless of how it was manifested. Objects would be thrown around the house at all times of the day.
Knives, broken glass, lids, bottles and other objects would be aimed at the occupants, visitors and generally cast all about the place. (later, investigations found that thrown objects when viewed through a thermal camera had an evenly distributed heat signature that proved to be hotter than their surroundings.
No finger mark traces or palm print heat signatures could be found) At one stage gravel and shells were said to rain in through the ceiling.
One of the more intriguing forms of activity were words found around the house, spelt out with ‘scrabble tiles’. Fire, Car, Skin, TV, No Cameras etc could be found spelt out in seemingly random places.
The Activity Gets Violent, Theories…
After the symbol of a trident and a cross had been found, made of pebbles in the drive, the occupants called for priests to come and cleanse the home.
The priests (of two different denominations) did not go unscathed.
Bibles were ripped from their hands, to be found afterwards missing pages, one of the priests arms was forcefully pulled behind his back, pinning him in a kneeling position, and a .44 Magnum bullet slammed into a table as one priest was praying. The owner of the house tried to get the occupants evicted, on the grounds they were destroying the house.
The judge saw in favour of the occupants, they were not damaging the house, but rather an unseen force was. However, less than a month after the ruling, the occupants had had enough and moved out. The building was renovated and the ghost was no more. So what was happening here? Who or what could be causing the disturbances?
Two months before the activity started a friend of the family had died in a car accident, burnt to death as the paint thinner he was transporting exploded. His name was Troy, Troy also being a name spelt by the scrabble letters. Five years earlier, the person who had been living in the house had been evicted by the bank. For twenty years he had lived in the McMinns Drive Bungalow, and he was not happy to be forced out.
He stated that it was his own spirit, his own energy, manifesting in anger while he slept.
Fake, Fraud… a Hoax?
It should be noted that in one piece of televised evidence from the house, that the reflected image of someone throwing an object was spotted.
When questioned, one of the residents owned up saying they were desperate for people to believe them. Is it possible that all the events that occurred could have been hoaxed?
Many claim it would be impossible, and would have to refute the testimonies of reporters, investigators, priests and anyone else who had witnessed the events that took place over those five months in 1998.
Ashley Hall is a paranormal investigator based in Adelaide, Australia. He is a sceptic with 15 years experience in the paranormal field and runs the popular Facebook page and website The Paranormal Guide.