The Indiana Haunting
In previous posts, we have observed instances where unwitting victims have been targeted by a notorious demonic possession. But in this post, we examine a case in which an entire family were allegedly driven from their home by creepy demons. This forced them to enlist the help of both the police and the church in an effort to save their children.
The interview with the 'possessed' children
The interview with the children had already taken several hours and as evening approached, Valerie Washington found herself longing for the end of her working day. She had been asked that afternoon by her supervisor at the Department of Children's Services to go across town to the hospital in Gary and assist the staff there in assessing a family which had been brought in. With the children's mother and grandmother seated next door in a separate room, she and one of the nurses had spent most of the day questioning the three siblings, in an effort to find out why the police had removed them from their home.
And whilst the interviews with the family's 12 year old daughter had gone well for the most part, sadly the same could not be said for her two brothers. The younger of the pair, who was seven years old had a tendency to growl and bare his teeth when asked questions.
He would roll his eyes right back in his head until only the whites showed, announcing that it would soon be time for those who are present inside the room to die. His older brother was less aggressive, but had largely remained silent when questioned, simply staring back at the case worker with a disconcerting smile.
Realizing that she was making little headway, Washington was about to end the interview, when the younger boy had launched himself across the table at his nine-year-old brother. Calling for the children's grandmother to assist, Washington watched on wearily as the older boy then began to head butt the old woman in the chest, provoking her to take him by the hand and commence praying out loud. Suddenly, the boy went completely stiff, his head rotating slowly to fix upon the two healthcare workers with a dead-eyed stare. He then began to walk backwards. Washington's jaw suddenly dropped open in disbelief, as the child reached the wall behind him, and then continued to walk backwards up it.
He was still staring at her, sporting that terrifying grin as he stepped off the wall, his feet now standing flat against the ceiling, before he dropped down again. With a frightened cry, Washington grabbed her notes and ran from the room, with the male nurse following closely behind her. As the waiting police officers jumped up to see what was going on, she ordered them to take the children into protective custody, and then shakily began to phone her supervisor.
The Haunting of Latoya's house
The first signs for Latoya Ammons that something might have been amiss with the one-story house in Caroline Street, where she had just relocated her family, were the flies. The weather in Gary, Indiana in that December of 2012 had been characteristically cold, and yet, after less than a week at the address, she found that the porch area and screen door was somehow permanently carpeted in a thick layer of grossly distended black flies. No matter how many times she tried to kill or remove the dead insects, they quickly returned, causing her to call the landlord and ask for assistance. For his part, he seemed as surprised by the issue as she did, saying that he would get someone to come round and look into the problem. He also stated that nothing like this had ever been reported by any of the previous tenants.
Several nights later, Latoya had been sitting in the living room with her mother, Rosa Campbell, when both women had been startled by the sound of loud footsteps apparently ascending the stairs from the basement below them. Thinking that this could potentially be one of her sons playing a prank, Latoya had gone across to the cellar door and opened it only to find nobody there.
Bewildered, she switched the basement lights on, before suddenly recoiling in horror. There on the wooden steps, illuminated by the solitary light bulb shining down from overhead, were a large set of glistening boot prints. Latoya had quickly locked the cellar door, and then checked every room in the house to ensure there were no signs of a break-in. All three children were still fast asleep in their beds, with the windows and doors to the address apparently locked and secure. After several minutes, when she went back to check the stairs, the mysterious boot prints had now seemingly faded away.
Calling the Police
A few days later, officers from the Gary Police Department were called to the address following a frantic 911 call from Latoya. When they arrived, they found the tenant hysterical, seated in the living room of the house with her three children hugged close, eyes darting frantically around the room. Then Latoya explained to the officers that she had arisen in the early hours to get a drink from the kitchen, only to encounter a dark figure standing in her path in the living room.
She had cried out in fear, as the shadowy intruder had lunged towards her, only for it to fade into nothingness as it made contact with her. Consumed by a freezing sensation, and a sudden urge to vomit, she had briefly collapsed to the floor, before regaining her senses and managing to call the police.
Despite their best efforts, the police officers could find no trace of an intruder, either inside the address or its surroundings and advised the mother of three to try and get a good night's sleep. But as terrifying as these encounters were, they were only the start of the horrific ordeal that was yet to come.
Continuation of the Paranormal Activities
Two weeks later, on the evening of March the 10th, 2012, the police were again called to Caroline Street. Once more, Latoya was hugging her children close to her, tears streaming down her face. The officers listened impassively as the children's grandmother explained that both she and her daughter had been awoken by panicked yells coming from her granddaughter's bedroom. Hurrying through the house, they had found the 12 year old girl levitating several feet above her bed, apparently fast asleep. It'd been her brothers who were screaming in distress.
Unable to rouse the floating child, Rosa Campbell had immediately ordered the others to join her in prayer, at which point the girl had descended to the bed. She awoke with no apparent memory of the event. It would transpire that the local churches which the grandmother had contacted in the aftermath of this incident were as skeptical as the police officers who had attended.
With the religious community refusing to help, the family instead turned to a local clairvoyant, who stated that she could feel the presence of multiple demons inside the address, advising the terrified tenants to vacate the residents immediately. Lacking the finances for such a move, Latoya instead attempted to cleanse the address herself. She erected a simple altar in the basement, made the sign of the cross in oil on the children's foreheads and read a psalm out loud. The situation quickly deteriorated. Latoya and her mother later discovered her seven-year-old son hiding inside one of the closets, apparently talking to an invisible child.
The boy explained that he was conversing with the spirit of a dead boy, who was describing to him how it felt to die. Almost immediately, both he and his brother seemed to become repeatedly possessed by demonic entities. They would growl like dogs, laugh maniacally and speak to her in strange voices which were not their own. Following an incident where an item at furniture apparently levitated by itself and then flew across the room injuring her daughter, the department of Children's Services were contacted by a neighbor who had concerns for the safety of the children.
It was whilst Latoya and the rest of the family were at the hospital seeking treatment, that a Case worker intended to interview them. The meeting did not go well, and when her eldest son apparently became possessed and walked backwards up a wall and onto a ceiling, her children were taken into care. Desperate to get them back, Latoya made repeated appeals to anyone she could think of, including religious leaders and a local police captain named Charles Austin.
Having worked in law enforcement for around 30 years prior to this case, Austin was initially skeptical of the account given by the hysterical mother. A visit to the family physician, Dr. Geoffrey Onyeukwu would do little to persuade him of her claims. On speaking with the doctor, he was informed that in all likelihood, the children were acting out delusions suggested to them by their mother's deeply religious beliefs. But the accounts of the social worker and nurse from the incident at the hospital concerned him. Both witnesses were trained professionals, completely terrified by what had taken place there. Accompanied by another officer, along with social worker Valerie Washington, he decided to pay a visit to the family home in Caroline Street.
Despite his many years on the force, Austin found himself completely unnerved by the encounter. The video recorder they were using repeatedly failed whilst in use, the batteries apparently sucked dry by some unknown force. While reviewing the photos they had taken at the premises, the outlines of shadowy figures could be seen standing watching the officers, which were also present on the images he had taken using his personal mobile phone. When he later went to review the audio notes he had recorded, Austin heard a mysterious voice talking in the background, which had not been heard at the time of the recording. He would later experience electrical issues at his home address, with devices shorting out or failing when he touched them.
Another individual who agreed to help the family was the Reverend Michael Maginot, who'd been contacted by the chaplain from the Methodist Hospital. When he spoke to Latoya, she pleaded with him to conduct an exorcism at the house. Agreeing to a preliminary visit to the address, he found that lights flickered when he went near them, and the window blinds would move around despite the windows being securely fastened. He would go on to conduct three separate exorcisms at the residence, two in English and one in Latin, none of which passed without incident.
During one of these visits, a strange oil began to ooze out of the fixtures, dripping onto the floor below. Even after officers cleaned this up and checked that these fittings had not been filled up with oil by Latoya, more of the fluid began to drip from inside. In another incident, a social worker named Samantha Ilic, who had taken over the family's case when Washington requested to be removed, suffered an adverse reaction. As with the officers on the previous visit, she discovered a strange fluid oozing out of the wall in the basement.
When she ran her finger through it, it was freezing cold and highly viscous. Suddenly, the strange gel seemed to change its chemical makeup, hardening and quickly solidifying. A sharp pain then shot through her finger, as if it had been snapped or broken. Ilic was instantly paralyzed, as her entire body was then engulfed in a similar agony. Unable to speak or breathe properly, she fled the house and refused to go back inside. After the third exorcism, whatever was taking place inside the address seemed to cease. Latoya was reunited with her children, moving out of the house shortly afterwards.
The highly public way in which Latoya Ammons has described the events which took place in Gary, Indiana have opened her up to accusations of manipulation and sensationalism. She has given multiple interviews about the alleged ordeal which she and her family went through, with some commentators accusing her of fabricating the accounts in order to profit from them.
It is true that Latoya was in financial difficulty at the time she reported the disturbances and was several months behind with her rent payments to her landlord. There is further criticism too in the written assessments of the children, which were carried out by state psychologists. Most were of the opinion that the boys in particular were attempting to please their mother, by acting out her fantasies to the authorities. And yet, many of the professionals who were involved with the family and who worked on their case simply cannot explain some of the things they saw and heard during that time. Some are veterans in their field, highly respected and upstanding in the local community with absolutely no reason to embellish or lie about what they encountered.
There is also the issue that Latoya has given the press direct access to her medical records and those of her children in order to verify and support aspects of her account. If she were to be fabricating what transpired, surely this is something she would have sought to hide in order to assist her narrative. With no further incidents of a supernatural nature having been reported by either the family, or any of the subsequent tenants of their old address, it seems that whatever forces targeted Latoya and her children have long since moved on.
Did a demonic entity fixate on this mother of three and her young family, in an effort to claim their souls, or was this a case of a mother affecting the mental health of her children through fantasy and indoctrination? In truth, we cannot be sure. But what we do know is that this case possesses a wide and diverse range of evidence, far in excess of most others we have looked at. And for that reason, it should be viewed as a cautionary tale of the potential threats waiting at the fringes of our reality.