February 26, 2008

PS: Asylum

In this investigation the PRS team visits the Willard Rehab facility in New York, which used to be a Mental Institution. The reports from the staff were fairly impressive, involving a number of different employees and some harrowing experiences including one case where the witness said they not only saw a woman appear in an otherwise empty hallway near them, but she apparently screamed at him before vanishing.

I was doubly excited to see Chip Coffey called in again to consult, but quickly realized that the setting was just all wrong for a psychic experiment. Not that Chip reported any impressions that were inaccurate, everything he said seemed to make sense but then again from the size and layout of the place it wouldn't have been hard to guess it used to be an asylum and many of the other inferences just follow naturally.

There was some reported contact with a spirit named Lucy, as well as some difficulty matching this "Lucy" up with a former employee — if Chip had managed to glean a last name that was verifiable that would have been impressive, but alas it was not to be. And on the off-chance Chip stops by to tell me it doesn't work that way, I'm sure it doesn't — just saying it would have been impressive. I'm also sure it won't be too long before he does have another chance to seriously impress us as he has in the past.

But there was a standout star in this investigation and it was a newcomer (to the show). Chris Moon brought a "Frank's Box", which runs on a random voltage generator and supposedly allows spirits to speak in a way that allows us to actually hear them speaking. During the investigation we see the Paranormal State team ask for a name and the name "Lucy" is clearly audible coming out of the box without delay. In fact there were a number of incidents where we see a question asked and an answer to the question seems to come from the box.

Now, this box isn't new and Chris Moon didn't invent it — although some might say it's "his thing". Ryan acknowleges that it is controversial when he explains they are bringing it into the investigation. I'm not well versed on the controversy (and anyone who is, by all means please fill us in — I'm sure we're all very curious. Also, if someone has a link to some Frank's Box footage that will blow us away, feel free to share) but from what I've seen in uncut footage there is one obvious problem: The box simply doesn't produce clear spoken answers regularly — although some operators like Chris will interpret very minute fluctuations and repeat what they heard, so the hit rate (as in, hit or miss) seems to be pretty high but I think most people wouldn't hear answers in most of those supposed hits.

That's not to necessarily say in a definitive way that there aren't actually any responses there to interpret, but if we're going to try approaching this scientifically there can't be a whole lot of doubt as to whether or not we actually heard a voice and what it said. I should also note that the machine does seem to produce voices fairly regularly, but most of them are impossible to nail down exactly what was said which means it could have been a stray radio signal or something else.

Ultimately though, it is hard to dismiss some of the more solid hits (like asking "What is your name?" and hearing, "Lucy") but there is also the old saying that if you put a dozen monkeys in a room full of typewriters long enough eventually you will get a Shakespeare play. Similarly, the impressiveness of some of the clear "responses" from a Frank's box is diluted by the sheer number of unimpressive responses — although I would agree some of them still seem impressive even knowing how rare they are.

Filed under Paranormal State, Posts by Logisti

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Comments on PS: Asylum »

February 26, 2008

Logisti @ 5:42 pm

(To whomever just submitted a comment re: Chris Moon explaining how a Frank's Box works, please resubmit your comment, it was accidentally deleted — Sorry!)

March 19, 2008

Andrew @ 9:05 pm

I lived in Willard and still live in the area. My mother went to nursing school there and worked on the grounds at the OTHER (older) drug treatment center (Van Dyke Addiction Treatment Center) since the 1970s. She has stories of ghostly activity (a woman in red) but in her 30 years of time there never once experienced anything herself.

The grounds for Willard's Pysche Center is massive. The problem with the investigation done by PS was that that only went to ONE building and a lot of the activity my mother knew about happened in other sections that aren't currently on prison grounds.

I didn't care for how they played up the aspect of Willard being notoriously uncaring or hurtful to the patients. In fact, as far as I've known from many people who worked there from the 40s on up it was one of the best centers in the Northeast.

It was interesting that the one person they didn't interview would have been the most knowledgable. She was briefly seen in the graveyard scene. This person was contacted by PS for a lengthy interview but it never aired. I'm guessing it wasn't 'juicy' enough and didn't portray the site in the way they wanted.

The whole thing had the air of a circus act, honestly.

August 17, 2008

Stephanie @ 3:28 pm

Having been a professional in the mental health field for some time, the irony leaps out when they have a ceremony with friends and family to honor the dead. I have to wonder where these "friends and family" were when the patients were alive and the contact would've been more meaningful?

November 20, 2008

E.McMillan @ 11:03 pm

My mother worked as a Pharmacist at Willard for the final 15yrs it was open. I spent many hours on the campus just strolling around (my girlfriends father was head of security at the time). I went to church services there and watched movies on Saturdays. I don't remember any of the "hall" names any more, but I've been all over that place and never actually saw or heard anything (and teenagers are prone to creative stories). The oddest thing I ever saw was after a church service, we were leaving the grounds and a patient actually laid on top of our car hood. Not exactly possessed or haunted, but at 15yrs old it kinda freaked me out. I spent a ton of hours walking around that place after dark and never experienced anything at all (just a gorgeous sunset at the bottom of the hill).

January 19, 2011

jess howard @ 10:03 pm

i was wondering were i can see the video of the willard drug treatment center haunting i have heard so much about it but am having a hrd time finding it or even the name of the book writen about the place.

January 20, 2011

Learjet @ 4:12 pm

Paranormal State can be found for viewing here. http://www.extremeghosthunters.com/

Scroll down a bit. Enjoy.

April 1, 2011

Aj Gordon @ 10:02 pm

I was unfortunately incarcerated at the Willard correctional facility from November 2007 until February 2008 during which I guess was the time the investigation was taking place. I still have not seen the footage and there is absolutely no need. I myself had multiple paranormal experiences with the worst being woken up to my bed sliding followed by being tapped in the leg. That place is beaming with activity. I ended up working in the building that was actually filmed in and never really had a distinctive experience besides being really creeped out with how scary that place is. If the prison ever closes again, someone should seriously pursue investigating those buildings. I guarantee they would not miss what they were looking for. F'ing CREEPY!!

September 3, 2011

frankie @ 9:21 pm

I was incarcerated their and heard many stories of the place being haunted, never once experienced anything, but beieve in paranormal activity. I would like fot zac from ghost adventures to ivestagate the premesis. He's good at what he does

November 2, 2011

Doug Anderson @ 11:07 am

Aj Gordon, I would like to hear your full story. We investigated several buildings there and did intensive interviews with the staff! We found that Paranormal States results lack substance and proof. I have heard from staff about the things going on inside the wire and would love the inmates story! Please feel free to contact me at portcityparanormal.com. Thanks in advance! Doug

November 4, 2011

sasha smith @ 1:54 pm

hi guys i knew drom the start that place was haunted i alsopickedup on the ghost lucy bless her she wanted out of that place the evil in the asylum was awful please respect PRS they know what there doing there very professoinal

doug anderson @ 2:40 pm

Andrew, I agree with you. The Asylum was the best of it's kind. We have done extensive research on this facility and talked to folks who worked there and some that work for the DOC. We have papers from professionals in the field and they seem to agree that is provided the best care possible. There are no demons there as paranormal State would have you believe. They did one building. We actually did 4 and a full day walk around. We recorded hundreds of EVP. Some were crazy, some were sad. But most were friendly. It is an amazing place with a rich history!Thanks and stay in touch. Much more to come!

doug anderson @ 2:48 pm

Paranormal State: The Asylum. It was an episode. It was very sketchy and had no real evidence of anything. Frank's Box is not evidence! Paranormal State…..Ryan Beull sees demons everywhere. We spent a lot of time there and got tons of voices. It is very haunted but now it is off limits to all groups because of State Regs and some idiot vandals. We have stayed very low key because of requests by state facilities! If you want to know more e-mail us!

Peter @ 7:16 pm

while on a tour of willard asylum I took many photos with my full spectrum camera . while in the theater i felt a presence there I walked to the back of the theater and I snapped many photos . I captured photo of a women in a white dress looking down from the cat walk of the theater . its on my website ghosthuntersofthefingerlakes.com I tryed to get in for a full investigation but was denied . its funny I got more evidence then most groups just doing a quick walk tour of willard . I hear I capture lucy a nurse that had been seen by many people that worked in willard aslum . but its only what I have been told by people that know of lucy and by people that live nearby .

doug Anderson @ 8:03 pm

Peter, How do you know it was Lucy you recorded? Did she give her name? The only Lucy associated with the Asylum is easily looked up on line. She was a patient. we did an original 55 minute walk around and got 28 EVP. That was a year before we did our full investigation there. When we returned, we got over 150 EVP as well as some striking video and personal experiences that were a bit extreme! And guess what? Ryan Buells demons don't live there! Glad you got to get a glimpse of this place. We are still doing research on the it and will be doing so for some time! we were lucky to get in when Mr. Williams was Supt. The guy there now is by the book and will prosecute tresspassers! Take care!

August 26, 2012

sherry @ 9:45 am

I to have been at Hillary once in 2007 and again in 2012 i have seen the woman in white seen lids fly down thehall and have been grabbed buy something that doesn't like to be bothered. Di rauche talks to Lucya lot there has been girls that have seen the girl spirit in the iron room and other things that have gone on there it is haunted¡!!!!!!!!!!!!

Doug Anderson @ 4:10 pm

Port City Paranormal investigated there over two years. We have a ton of EVP as well as personal experiences. The grounds are haunted but there are no demons like PRS states. They are inmates and staff there but there are no demons. PRS is full of crap!

Doug Anderson @ 4:15 pm

PRS has no idea of what is there. There are no demons. Ryan Buell has his own demons but there are none at the asylum. He does not understand the difference between mental patients and demons. You are in death what you were in life. We did a much more extensive investigation there over 2 years. They really have no idea what they are talking about!

September 18, 2012

joey @ 4:01 pm

this is bull it is not real

September 19, 2012

Doug Anderson @ 1:32 pm

Joey, What is bull? What is not real? Just wondering what you are refering to!

September 20, 2012

Aj Gordon @ 5:23 pm

During the 3 months i was there i was touched in the leg by a spirit that had just woke me up out of my sleep by moving my entire double bunk bed, saw a good friend of mine, a grown man, bust out in tears because he just saw a woman appear and dissapear in a brightly lit hallway, not to mention countless other little reminders that they were there. This happened almost 5 years ago now and i remember it like it was yesterday. I put my son's life on it, its VERY REAL

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