This is an age of inquisitiveness. Our doubts lead to a “must know” attitude of having to figuring everything out and to having all the answers. In and of itself, it is not a bad idea especially as it relates to doctors, researchers, and scientist. But when the eager and inexperienced paranormal investigator, or ghost hunter, decides to go off on his or her own and make the rules, well, there are severe consequences involved.
Recently I read an article a friend had shared (below). It seems even with permission, and proper credentials, the most trustworthy of people — even police officer’s — can be arrested and face imprisonment for not following the rules while conducting an innocent act such as paranormal investigating.
Diane Briscoe, an off duty police officer, and her two sons were arrested at gunpoint while conducting a paranormal investigation. She had the property owner’s verbal permission, and she also had a key to the property. However, she was missing one very important thing — a signed (dated) authorization letter.
This article brought back memories of the most recent investigation I had been a part of. I was there strictly in a literary sense — I was documenting the events. We were at a Federal building and it was daytime. The business was operational. We were not allowed to enter the premises, however we did conduct an investigation of the grounds.
The Federal property happens to be the site where it is alleged over 200 people died at the hands of a psychotic serial killer. Knowing full well we had not been given permission to enter the property, one of the individuals in the group decided to attempt to open a door of the Federal building, which had been permanently sealed. She fiddled with the door and even asked, “Does anyone have a bobby pin or a knife or anything? I know there’s something behind this door and I know I can open it.”
Now, I’m no angel. I have my share of “colorful” moments. However, I practice good moral character when at all possible. I was the killjoy and the conscience of the group. I warned against tampering with the door as it would constitute a Federal offense, and I did not want to be an accomplice in such a crime, nor did I wish to harm any possible future prospects of investigating at this location.
Here is a bit of advice, when desiring to conduct an investigation at a particular location make sure you are respectful of both the living and the deceased. In addition, if you really desire to investigate a location, do your homework. Know all you can about a place before asking permission, check history, public records, and if possible talk to previous investigators about their experiences, the internet is a veritable cornucopia of information at your fingertips.
When asking permission, don’t ask a maid, groundskeeper or maintenance worker, as they do not have the authority to permit an investigative team. Merely ask them for the property managers phone number or address.
Lastly, if and or when you are given permission, inform the authorities of the date and time you will be conducting the investigation. A quick stop at the local police station with a copy of the signed dated letter of permission will save you the embarrassment of an arrest, the bail money to get out of jail, and the risk of losing your investigation equipment as the arresting officers will not allow you time to “pack up” when you are apprehended and arrested for trespassing.
One act of caution might prove to go a very long distance while capturing ground breaking scientific evidence on your next paranormal adventure!
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